My seniors and their's killing me. (Vent)

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Californiablonde, Jun 1, 2012.

  1. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    So it's that time of year again. School is over in three weeks. Kids are getting restless. This happens every year, usually after spring break. Suddenly the attendance records are atrocious. The kids are getting bored and don't wanna come. So they don't. Especially my seniors. They all know that it is absolutely imperative to make it to every single class simply because they will get F's and they won't graduate unless they do. All it takes is two months of being lazy and their whole future could hang in the balance.

    My older brother is a huge example. He moved out of the house two months before graduation. He stopped going to school. Pulled the "I'm eighteen so technically I can do whatever I want" routine. Well he ended up not graduating. Where is he today? Still living at home. Two adult children, one five year old child, divorced, and a grandfather of three. He has been unemployed for at least two years. Before he lost his last job, he had numerous jobs he couldn't keep. My brother's work ethic is terrible. Basically he doesn't have one.

    My ex got him a job at one time to try and help him out. It was at an autobody shop. My brother doesn't know much about cars but they took him in anyway. My brother does not like to work. At the autobody shop he would stand around and smoke cigarretes instead of working. Would make up excuses not to work. He ended up getting fired. Made my ex look like a dumb ass because he is the one who recommended him. That's just one of the many jobs he's lost over the years. I have made him an example to my kids at what NOT to do when you grow up. Some of my students are headed down the same path. One of them is my sixth period TA. I will call her Melissa.

    Melissa has terrible attendance. She is in danger of failing, if she's not already. I have spoken to her mom about her lack of attendance a couple of times. Mom says they are having family problems right now because they are going through a divorce. Melissa is out of control and refuses to do what she is told. Our assistant principal has had talks with her. I even had a talk with her at one point, telling her I can relate to the issues she is going through right now. My parents divorced when I was sixteen and it was hard. But I still went to school.

    Told her that she is only damaging herself and her future by sabotoging her chance to graduate. Told her that later on in life, when her friends are driving nice cars, have nice jobs, and can afford to buy nice clothes, she will be kicking herself for not graduating. I seemed to get through to her. She started attending all of her classes, including mine, and promised she would be good the whole rest of the year. Told me she really really wants to graduate and that her teachers say she is on track as long as she doesn't miss any classes from now till the end of the year.

    I really thought she changed for the better. I was wrong. She cut three classes this week. Two of them were mine. Now I have been put in the very uncomfortable position of deciding whether or not to give her credit for my class. She needs my class to graduate. If I give her no credit, she will not graduate. I could let her skip and give her credit anyway, but that really wouldn't be fair. I know that if I was her mom I would be really upset if my kid didn't graduate all because of one class. I would be angry at the teacher/staff member who gave her a failing grade. So more than likely we will pass her because we would hate to have her future lie in our hands.

    There are some teachers out there who may not be as forgiving. Melissa is only one of a big handful of kids who are in danger of not graduating due to attendance right now. I just hope my own two kids don't follow suit and do the same thing to me one day. I can't imagine the anger and frustration some of their parents must have right now. Hopefully I won't be one of them some day.
  2. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Oh well it was nice to vent anyway. I'm off and running. Have a great weekend y'all.
  3. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My middle son's English teacher did this to him his senior year. She failed him for attendance even though the reason he missed every single day was an excused absence with a doctor's note. We only get 10 days here per semester and he ended up getting very sick twice that semester. She was the only teacher who refused to honor the doctor's notes. We ended up pulling him out at the end of that semester and sending him to adult high school and he graduated from there before his home high school He was the youngest student in the adult high school. He was 17 and the oldest was 88.
  4. pigless in VA

    pigless in VA Well-Known Member

    Talk to Melissa one more time. You got through to her once, maybe she just needs a reminder. But, don't blame yourself if she doesn't graduate; she is making the poor choices not you. Sometimes we learn faster when we do something monumentally stupid.

    :sushi:Have some more sushi!
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2012
  5. 1905

    1905 Well-Known Member

    I know it's hard to watch a trainwreck happen, especilly when it's a student you care about. I have a feeling you care about all your students like this. Talk to her again, or let her do most of the talking. See where she is at, you may not be doing her any favors by allowing her to graduate, she may be better off in hs for another year. Don't worry what the parents think, the main goal is for her to succeed. It seems like things you told her she did take to heart. You care, don't be sorry for that. Vent away. My son was pretty much done 2 months ago also. Once he got accepted to college, forget it- he never wanted to go to school again! I kept trying to tell him they could change their mind, but you know, he knows more than I do- I don't know anything (please!). It was an argument every morning.