Why I’m NEVER Having Kids

Why I’m NEVER Having Kids #62: School Daze, Part 2 – Parent-Teacher Conferences are TORTURE!!

June 30, 2008 · No Comments

Above: A video example of a BAD teacher conference.  Hilarious!!

(Note: In this 5-part series, I will be discussing the various reasons why having to deal with putting my kids through school makes me NOT want to have them.  Feel free to share with your friends, and add any commentary you might have!)

As a kid, nothing brought more fear into my brain than hearing that my parents were off to my school for a parent-teacher conference.  I didn’t get grades that were TOO bad, but I was always nervous that they’d come back and be ready to ground me indefinitely for… well, for whatever it is my teacher may have said about me that was negative.

Looking back, though, I can imagine that it was probably even MORE of an unjoyful experience for my parents.  And, now that I’m out of school, it’s an experience I’d like to NEVER go through!

Why, you ask?  Parent-teacher conferences are nothing more than meetings where the parents end up being judged – “graded,” if you will – on how well they’re raising their kids.  Teachers might not directly say if you’re doing a good or bad job, but you can tell by the conversation how the teacher REALLY feels about the job you’re doing at home.

For example: If a teacher says, “I think Susie is doing a great job communicating her thoughts in the classroom,” what s/he’s REALLY saying is:

“You two (or one) are doing a GREAT job helping your kid feel comfortable about expressing their ideas at home – good for you!  You deserve a gold star sticker!”

BUT… if the teacher says, “Little Susie isn’t participating in the classroom discussions,” what s/he’s REALLY saying is:

“You are the WORST parents in the world – what, are you so busy telling your child what to do that you don’t let her throw in her own ideas at home?!? You have her so scared to talk that she won’t open up!  Boo, parents, boo – you don’t get a gold anything!!”

Okay, so maybe the teachers aren’t thinking these thoughts.  But parents take any criticisms about their kids performance in just about ANYTHING like a personal attack on their parenting.  And how could they NOT feel that way?  Logically, if I have a kid that’s not doing something right in school, it means there’s something I didn’t catch wind of that should have had more attention paid to it.

On the other hand, dealing with some teachers can be downright torturous to talk to.  You have the professors that think they know it all, and seem shocked when a parent brings up a concern their child had about the teacher’s learning technique.  Question them, and you have a parent-teacher conference that feels more like a rectal exam: full of tension, very unpleasant, and not over fast enough!

Then, you have the teachers who are the “negative ninnies” of the bunch, i.e. the ones who grade the hardest and have never seen the letter “A” in their life.  Go into a conference with them, and you’ll hear so many bad things about your kid’s academic performance, you’d think they were the most retarded kid in class.  Too bad the teacher doesn’t tell you that she NEVER gives out A’s, hates her job, and grades unfairly to get back at “the man” for making her become a teacher in the first place!

I didn’t like dealing with teachers as a student, and I’m DARN sure I don’t want to have to deal with teachers again via parent-teacher conferences.  And the only way to avoid them? By NEVER having kids!

-A.P. Taylor

Send your “Why I’m NEVER Having Kids” stories/ideas to neverhavingkids@gmail.com.  If you’re a parent, send your “Dealing w/Kids Horror Stories” – who knows, your story could be the catalyst for my next blog!

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