a Mother ran into my classroom screaming & demanding I postpone a 3rd gd math test because SHE was too stressed about it and didn't feel her son was prepared. I said no and she LOST it. What do I do?

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Wow. I agree with don’t give in, give the kid the test and the chance to do corrections. I hope your admin is supportive. If they interview you, emphasize the need to give the test so you can assess the data and evaluate the needs of each child in your class, especially this close to when they will be taking the big standardized test for the first time. (I assume your state is like mine and starts that in 3rd grade.) Is this normal for this parent? If not, when this is all over, maybe offer to sit down with her and help her understand how she can help her child. Maybe even record some videos that parents can access at home because math has changed a lot since we were in school. I have parents who even struggle with how we do subtraction. Another idea is offering some after school tutoring time, because we don’t want our kids or their parents to get stressed out. If this is normal for her, avoid being around her without witnesses. Make sure your coworkers know so they can help get assistance if needed. A friend of mine had a parent threaten to drive her car into the school. Sometimes crazy’s just crazy.

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You could tell the mom that you would be happy to provide her with a copy of the test for her to review. You could agree to allow the child to complete the test at home. You may want to provide students with multiple ways to demonstrate mastery of a skill with examples of what each stage of mastery looks like. Parents should expect teachers to create academic opportunities that engage, challenge, and encourage students to think critically and achieve at high levels. Parents should also expect teachers to create an academic culture within the classroom that values mistakes and creativity, promotes discourse, and utilizes collaborative structures that build community, respect, and friendship amongst classmates. If a parent is demanding and screaming at you view it as an opportunity for you to clarify your intent so that parent is at ease. Take time to reflect on ways you can improve as an educator and an advocate for your students. Plan ways to improve parent communication so that it is supportive and constructive as opposed to hostile. You hold the keys.

I mean this ad respectfully as possible, but WHAT?

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How did a parent get to your classroom anyway? If you bow to one parent, you set yourself up for every other parent to demand you do what you are told by them. Make sure administration knows what happened.

likesmartfunny

Parents aren’t allowed past the office in my school without an escort by the teacher *expecting* them. We actually have to be buzzed through to gain access to our classrooms from the office area.

likesmart

Let admin handle her crazy. Call security if she won’t leave, proceed as normal. Be ready for her to be a psycho for the rest of the year, so just send home extra reminders, emails, etc to cover your butt. But above all else, don’t engage her, don’t try to fight fire with fire, just let it go. Move on with your day. She’s a psycho and always will be.

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That has GOT to be unnerving !!

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Here’s a thought, is one test worth all of this trouble?

I bet you are a pretty busy person and you have many other things on your plate. I would just let this go.

See what you can do to work with the parent/child. Reschedule the test for this kid. Make a plan to ensure that the kid is prepared for future assessments. You come off as the reasonable one, willing to work with the parent. And this causes less frustration than fighting a battle. You both win.

Just a thought.

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I wholeheartedly agree, 6. We need to teach parents that it is time for the student to speak for himself, and take consequences, come what may.

likesmart

First problem is that NO parent should be at or in your room with other students present. That would be an emergency lock down for our school!
Second problem her stress level plays not impact on a third grade math test. I would suggest a Dr. appt.
Third, the relationship you have with the student should allow you to reassure him that his best is ok and you will answer any questions he might have with the test.

likesmart

Stick your ground. Don’t give in. Get admin support if you feel you need it

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How did she get into your room? That’s what I’d be worried about.

likesmart

Did the parent not have to stop in the office when they entered the building? If they were supposed to and they didn’t, I would call for security.

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Zero protocol is shocking in this day & age.
Seven years ago when I was the parent of a 5th grader in latchkey it was very difficult to get into the building at 4:30. Now all adults, except staff, have to have a picture ID in hand to be allowed in the main office, but even then they are locked out of the rest of the building.

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Stand your ground! I don’t know why she would be stressed about it. She isn’t taking the test, her kid is!!

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She sees the child as an extension of herself. Poor kid

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I do not tell my students or parents when I will give them an assessment. It just adds to the stress. I assign short quizzes throughout so it gives me a good estimate of when the whole class is ready for a unit assessment. Usually 5-6 weeks.

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Nope! Life is full of stress and we can’t just turn it off when we get overwhelmed. She isn’t even giving the child the chance to try! Let’s see how the child does before we lose our minds lol!

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Wow!! What a mother? She’s setting a horrible example for her child!!

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How did she get to your room?!? Give administration a heads up and direct her their way. That’s their area.

likesmart

Where's your security????

likesmart

Always be sympathetic and sit down and discuss things
Also a trick I learned is begin writing down everything she says, let her know that you are really listening, if she is talking too fast to write everything have her stop and let you catch up.
These pauses let her take a breath and calm down
Also if you read it back to her, just to make sure you have it right, she will begin to lose the anger and open a discussion
If you can get to a point where she is supporting you and her child there will be less anger and more discussion, more help for her child
Good luck
Angry parent are tough, but they genuinely care about their kids, they just don’t know how to help or when to back off

likesmarthelpful

I agree, but it isn't realistic if 25 3rd graders are sitting in the room!

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Let admin handle it.

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First, how did she get to your classroom without security or the office knowing? Obviously, your school has a serious security issue. Second, parents don't dictate test dates. Third, wow. You need to report this to the office and principal. Our office controls when and where parents see us. We have two security guards and two policeman on campus at all time.

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Her identity is a little wrapped up in her kids performance and she's clearly not well. Have compassion on her but let her know that her son is not going to stop being a wonderful son nor will she stop being a mother who loves him even if the worst happens. It is one measure of his work, but it's not the measure of his worth.

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Add a little sugar and your favorite berry flavor to those crocodile tears of hers and carry on.

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Well I’m sure that Mom is fine now, she has plenty of time to do her don’s third grade work. 👍🏼🤣

funny

I meant son’s work, obviously. Sorry!

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Reading all these...were other students present during this intrusion? That wasn’t clear. Her coming into my class in that manner would have ruined the focus of the class and I would have to reschedule the test anyways. Steady practice and reflection on errors is all they need at the 3rd grade level. Sorry for your experience.

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