If you’re a teacher you will totally understand where I am coming from. Dealing with painful parents for me is THE most difficult part of being a teacher. You have to deal with them for at least a whole year and it could be a number of years at worst!
Although the article is titled ‘Get Rid of Painful Parents’ I am not going to be giving you tips to physically get rid of them but I am going to tell you how to get rid of their painfulness so to say.
1. First of all set boundaries at the start of your year and let parents know of the most convenient time FOR YOU when they can come and discuss any issues they have. This is so important as you don’t want them hanging around first up in the mornings wanting to talk to you in front of other parents and then edging into the morning routine. That just causes massive stress for you at the start of the day and it also takes away from the part of teaching you actually love…the children!
2. Next, actually listen to them! This might be hard but try to really listen to what they are saying. Are they really asking for help? Perhaps they are reaching out. Or maybe they just like to complain, ignore your advice or whatever the case may be.
3. Work out their personality. This is so crucial. Are they the aggressive type? If so, make sure that when you do organise meetings with them that perhaps there is another teacher present or at least in the room next door. I’m not suggesting that they would hurt you (this is highly unlikely!) but these types can start to make things difficult for you. It’s a great idea to have a colleague present who can witness the conversations.
If you have any concerns about dealing with any parents don’t forget to chat to your senior teachers or supervising teachers. They have been dealing with parents for a long time and will have a wealth of knowledge.
I am also happy to discuss any issues with you so just send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org All of what you share will be kept confidential.
Do you have any tips you can share?