Do you think it's my responsibility to call these parents?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by 1stGradeRocks, Dec 2, 2013.

  1. 1stGradeRocks

    1stGradeRocks Comrade

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    We are going on a field trip later this week. I still have 7 students who have not returned their permission slips. I sent home another copy with those students today. If they don't return them, do you think it's my responsibility to call the parents?
     
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  3. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    I would.
     
  4. Sarge

    Sarge Enthusiast

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    I'd call. If it were older students I wouldn't. But with first graders, it's not so much a issue of responsibility, but the actual developmental limits of their memory from morning to afternoon.
     
  5. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    I wouldn't with my grade 7 students, but I would with grade 1s.
     
  6. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I'd call, even for my high schoolers. It's just less of a headache.
     
  7. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    I agree with the others. Especially since they are little I would call (or email if you know the parents check their email)
     
  8. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    Yes, I'd call them.
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    If not your responsibility, then whose? Call.
     
  10. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Call.
     
  11. 1stGradeRocks

    1stGradeRocks Comrade

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    The parents responsibility to check the agenda that is supposed to be signed every night.
     
  12. Honest_Teacher

    Honest_Teacher Comrade

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    What, exactly, was your goal in posting the original thread?
     
  13. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    If you don't call, and the students don't have their permission slips, what happens on the day of the trip?
     
  14. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    I always touch base with my parents regarding the permission slips and money. If they have not returned the permission slip I want to know why. Sometimes, they have simply forgotten, thought the other parent took care of it or don't plan on letting their child go on the trip. In my situation, all students are allowed to go on the field trip, regardless of the ability to pay. Sometimes it's tricky trying to determine if that is the reason why the parent hasn't return the permission slip or if there is some other reason.
     
  15. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Are you really going to play the game of "It's not my job" over something like this??

    OK, so you win. You don't call. And seven six year olds miss a field trip that the others will be talking about until they graduate.

    Kind of an empty victory.

    Of course I would call.
     
  16. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    When I give the students the form I let them know they can't come on the trip without it. That usually inspires most of them to get it signed quickly.

    At the end of the day, it's your job to call. This is not the time to make a point... your kids will miss out because the adults couldn't get it together. Save yourself a headache and make the calls.
     
  17. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    So are you willing to punish first graders for their parents not holding up their end of the bargain? That's seems kind of crappy, don't you think?
     
  18. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    I always call-I've even called on the day of. Unless that I've heard from the parent for sure that they are not letting them go, I want to give them every opportunity to get that learning experience. I know with my kiddos sometimes they spend the night at grandma's, sometimes Mom thinks Dad signed it and he didn't, etc. It's worth it to me to be sure.
     
  19. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    Of course it's the parents responsibility, but it is your students who will suffer. I'm pretty on top of things, but as a mom, wife, and teacher, things happen sometimes!
     
  20. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    Even my dentist's office (thankfully) calls with a reminder of my upcoming appointment.

    Some parents just don't have it together. Some do, but are going through a rough patch at home. Others may have sent it, thought they sent it, and somehow it didn't end up on your desk.

    Any of those scenarios only will punish the child. Just call.
     
  21. OhThePlaces

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    I always make phone calls a day or two before the permission forms are due. It takes less than a minute to give a friendly reminder and it's worth the trouble if it allows my kids to experience a field trip that they might otherwise miss out on.
     
  22. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    You could do what we did last year - make a simple bracelet reminder out of a strip of paper - something like "Please return the field trip permission slip tomorrow!" and staple it in a circle so the students can wear them home. That might help both the kids and the parents remember.

    Of course, that may have been a better idea for today, now that tomorrow is Tuesday.

    I would call, but I've never had to. We send out permission slips eons in advance, and even the parents who rarely sign anything always send the permission slips back.

    I do sympathize, though. I have a few of those never-check-the-homework-binder-or-return-anything parents. It does get very frustrating. I'm willing to bet your post has to do with frustration over repeat offenders. I try to remember that it is RARELY the student's fault at this age.
     
  23. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Oh my. Are you sure you teach FIRST graders?
    Have you considered that its a few days after Thanksgiving, the week of Hannukkah, families are in holiday rushes, busy at work, juggling schedules...some pick their kids up, feed them athe them and send them to bed just to get up tomorrow and do the same. Have a little empathy. For the kids, if not their parents. Call.
     
  24. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    If I taught little kids, I would make the calls ... Another reason why I could never teach elementary.
     
  25. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    I'd call too, because as most have said its not the kids' fault. But it is super annoying to constantly deal with parents that don't check folders, don't return slips, etc. etc. I've been constantly re-scheduling parent teacher conferences for two parents who keep showing up at the wrong time or not showing up for almost a month now. Every time I schedule something I'm planning on giving up my prep or coming in earlier than usual. If it's a once in awhile thing, yeah sure I can understand, we all get busy. But for many of my students its an all the time thing. I go above and beyond as it is in my classroom to have to do even more because some parents can't stay on top of their responsibilities is just added work.
     
  26. Blue

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    My GS is in 8th grade. We never see any paperwork from the school. We think there is a big black hole filled with paperwork between home and the school. Luckily, his school has an automatic phone call to remind parents of important dates.
     
  27. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    As many of you know, I've been that parent.

    In fact, I was that parent the entire year my youngest was in first grade. My world was crashing down-- every single time I came up for air, there was another crisis-- my mastectomy, the death of my father in law 10 days later, the kids coming home with head lice, the baby sitter's car accident (from which, thank God, she eventually recovered, but it left us with no sitter for 6 weeks), my radiation starting on Christmas Eve, a pregnancy scare 10 days into radiation, the surprise loss of our dog, then the death of my niece's 3 year old daughter. All within one school year. There were many, many notices I missed.

    It would have hurt me to the core to see my daughter punished because I was unable to keep all the balls in the air.

    As a teacher, I would make those 7 phone calls, regardless of how old my students were. If for no other reason, do it to avoid making 7 ardent enemies with 6 months left in the school year.
     
  28. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Gotta love that black hole! I've had several students over the years who have that same black hole (and one whose black hole was somewhere in the classroom--his papers could go missing even if he never left the room!)
     
  29. Loveslabs

    Loveslabs Companion

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    Answer: You will have crying children.

    Answer: You will have angry parents.

    Answer: You will have chaos because parents will be trying to get to the school to sign the form before you leave for the trip. Then you will be late taking off for the trip which is actually disruptive, stressful, and unfair for everyone involved.
     
  30. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    As alice said, any of those families could be going through a crisis. I had a family death in the middle of the school year, and the time before, during and the months after had me in shock, grief and depression. I had always been a conscientious parent, but things slid that school year. Luckily, my kids were older and my husband was there.

    Your students are so little. What will be served by not calling?
     
  31. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    Our secretaries do call parents the day of field trips and get verbal permission to send children. That saves a lot of drama.
     
  32. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Ours have done this as well, although I try to avoid them having to do that--they are busy enough as it is.
     
  33. Loveslabs

    Loveslabs Companion

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    We are not allowed to accept verbal permission. It is board policy we must have written permission. Plus, it is not the secretary's job to do my job. It is chaotic in the office in the morning and adding fuel to the fire is not helpful.
     
  34. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    I know it's extra stress on the office. But our secretaries make it look easy. :)

    But as I said, the teacher should try to reach parens before the day of the trip.
     
  35. Loveslabs

    Loveslabs Companion

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    We have one secretary for over five hundred students. She also doubles as the school nurse since we only have a nurse on Thursday afternoons from 12:30 to 1:30. Add into the mix that we have a resource officer in the office in the morning to help with cranky parents that are think we are whipping posts and you can see why it isn't so easy in every school to ask the secretary to do your job.

    When it comes to school funding things really suck for some schools. :(
     
  36. GemStone

    GemStone Habitué

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    I see your point. Not every school has sufficient resources to assist in these situations.
     
  37. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    I understand yor frustration. We have a planner that parents are supposed to sign each night. I often use it to send messages to parents. There are always some who never sign. I had a mother ask to meet with my principal and I a few weeks ago. Her son is failing my classes because he doesn't study. She told the principal that she has repeatedly requested that I let her know when the tests are and I didn't. I calmly pulled out his planner and showed her all the notes I had written about tests. It's frustrating. But her choice to not check the planner isn't his fault. Even in 4th grade I choose to call parents when forms don't come in. It's 10 minutes out of my life, and my kids deserve it.
     
  38. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Here is how the conversation will go with your admin the morning of the field trip:

    YOU: I will need someone to supervise these 6 kids today because they have not brought back signed permission forms to attend the field trip.

    ADMIN: Why haven't they brought in the forms?

    YOU: I don't know. Parents haven't checked the planner.

    ADMIN: Have you called the parents to follow up?

    YOU: No.

    ** Insert crickets chirping **

    Save yourself and the kids the embarrassment.
     
  39. BookReader813

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    I wouldn't say that it is your responsibility, but it would be a courteous gesture to give them a reminder call. ;)

    Just my :2cents:
     
  40. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    This is when the ability to send out an auto-dialer message would REALLY come in handy.
     
  41. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Connoisseur

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    I would call. Luckily at my school we have them sign a permission slip when they reregister their kids every year. It is part of the registration papers they sign EVERY year. The teachers get this paper. I keep mine in a small notebook and that notebook goes with me when we leave the campus and fire drills. This paper has phone numbers and other contact information for my class.
     

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