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The Parent Who Hates You

I am feeling discouraged by a parent who seems impossible to please? I try to develop a realistic, productive outlook on relationships with students' and parents. The problem is I have to try to not take it personal, this is easy said then done. I have found that most teachers have one parent every year who hates them. The key is understand that I can't please everyone, and that teaching is my joy she can't steal that from me. I try to be pleasant to all my parents even the hard ones.

So here is how I am working on it; I am being mentally prepared for that not every parent will like my teaching style and will not take it personally!- This was so hard because I put so much into my teaching that it is personal to me. A long time ago I gave a mentor of mine advice that now I need to take myself "You can't please everyone." Its so true!

So here are some helpful tips that I have learned from this year...

1. Establish expectations up front
I do this at the start of my year at our open house and on the first day of school. Yet their are parents and students who don't show up to those events it helps if you have this in writing, not just like rules, school expectations but those of your class. I also resend reminders of this in January.
2. Establish Your Authority
Even if you parent knows me since I was a baby I am Ms. Carrington. My niece and I go to the same school and even she as an 8 year old gets it at school I am Ms. Carrington the minute she is in the car I'm Auntie. I have had parents in my class who I was the flower girl in their wedding yet know when we are dealing with the classroom I am the Teacher. Parents should also respect that just as in any profession. This is easy done with parents when they understand for 8 hours of the day I am with your child during those hours I need them to understand that I am in charge to educate and keep them safe this can only be done with your acceptance of this as parents and their participation as students.
3. Invite them into your classroom
I always remind my parents I have a open door classroom they can come and visits attend a trip, I ask for 48 hour notice just to make sure the room is set for a parent visit. I have had Parents come in really see what it is I do in my class and how my teaching is very different and very student center and parents see how if a child acts up how this takes away from the plans. Also I have had parent who then notice how hard my job really is with 20+ students at times. Then you will have those parents who talk, talk , talk and never step foot in the class and will still complain. Once again I say "You Can't Please Everyone!" I still invite them just to say they had the invitation given to them.
4. Partnership with parents

I stress to my parents that we both want the same things for their child to do their best and be great and successful. The problem comes when just like any good parent every teacher knows that "ALL PARENTS think their child is GIFTED, WELL MANNED, An "A" student " Well all teachers know that's is our line we walk trying not to walk over the line too far. Well developing a strong partnership is important when the tough talks have to come they will know you have the best interest of their child at heart. This can be done as simple as using words like "us, we, and team" when talking to parents. I also try to support my students at other events, like band, sporting, even outside of school events. Also provided parents with resource when they need help and explaining to them the level of development their child is at, sometimes parents are more understanding when they realized that most issues are due to development growth at this stage their child is at currently.

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