I've already written a few posts about Big Red and her stellar grades and school work ethic so this one might not come as a surprise...
I've decided to back off and let Big Red fail 6th grade. (She'll have repercussions of course.)
It's not that I don't care, I'm just not dragging her through the school year anymore.
I've written emails to teachers. I've tracked down countless missed assignments and arranged for her to have extra time to turn them in. Once I get her caught up she shits it all up again. Maybe she's not developmentally ready for 6th grade. Maybe she doesn't care. Maybe it's the fact that there's never been a major consequence. I honestly don't know what it is but I do know that everyone in Big's life has gone over and above for her and she doesn't try to help herself one bit. She doesn't seem to be bothered by F's or being grounded for 3 months. So I'm going to let her fail.
What amazed me about all of this has been the teachers responses.
When I brought this up to Big's teachers they offered to give her extra credit and extra time. One teacher actually just excused all of the missing grades!!!
I was disappointed, but I wasn't shocked. I've spent 6 years pleading with teachers to hold my child accountable and do what it takes to make her learn and grow as a person. I don't care if she has to miss recess or has to do extra homework or is embarrassed; so long as she's learning and not just being pushed along to the next babysitter.
The last teacher I met with told me that Big has the ability to do well but has no motivation and they're not sure how to motivate her. My response was "wanna motivate her? - embarrass her. Make it known when she doesn't have homework, call attention to her when she's goofing off."
The teacher looked at me as if she was waiting for the punch line. I have to say it's not the teachers fault here. Us as parents have thoroughly fucked the education system and our kids in the process. We've pushed teachers into a corner and don't allow them do do their job. We're more worried about them upsetting our children than we are about them teaching our children.
I've seen it happen in my in my own circle of friends. Parent's bashing their kid's teachers
in front of the kids. Parents "not standing" for the way their kid is
treated in school.
Little Timmy comes in last place in field day and doesn't get a ribbon and mom's on the phone raising hell because Timmy doesn't feel appreciated. Susie gets yelled at in class for not listening and mom is on the phone demanding action against the teacher.
You know what, maybe your kid is an asshole and needs to learn some respect. I know 9 times out of 10 when my kid is in trouble it's because they're being assholes and not because they have teachers hell bent on torturing my them.
I know there are some shitty teachers out there, but our kids need to learn to deal with those too. Life isn't fair, not all bosses are fair either. Life is sometimes shitty and if our kids don't learn to cope with that early on we've essentially fucked them too...
Anyway, back to my story. I've decided to let it go and see where it gets us. Maybe she'll pull her head out of her ass, but I'm not placing any bets on that happening. What I am expecting is a major fight at the end of the year though. I'll place money on it that I actually have a fight on my hands when I try to ensure she's back in 6th grade again.
Am I being mean and heartless here? Did I miss the parenting memo? I don't know any other way to get the message across. I hope I'm doing the right thing, but I really feel like a shitty mom.
(I should note that she gets scored in the 90-95 percentile on all of her test scores. She's not delayed in that sense. She actually gets A's and B's on classwork and tests, she just refuses to bring her homework home or actually do it when she does bring it home)
On a positive note...she's a kick ass babysitter. Maybe she can work in a daycare when she's older.