<<Kitty see, kitty do.
Stop bullying! Bullying and public displays of humiliation are wrong. Putting videos on You Tube and publicizing them on Facebook is inappropriate, cruel and humiliating.
So why do parents keep doing it?
Did I just say parents?
I sure did.
Take a look at this article, and this one and this one.
Each time a parent did not like what they heard from the school instead of working it out privately, they made a video or called the media so that they could publicly flog the school and get their way.
Gross, parents. You’re really, really gross. And by this definition: "Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively impose domination over others," YOU ARE THE BULLIES.
The My Little Pony backpack boy was pulled out of school while Mom went on various national shows and trashed said school.
Prayer kindergartner Mom didn’t even have confirmation from the school that her child was telling the truth. I know we don’t like to believe this – but kids sometimes aren’t honest! Whaaaaa?? Maybe not YOUR kid. Or that lady’s kid. But I have it on good authority (hint: I used to be a kid and I also have kids) that sometimes kids make stuff up.
Restraining order parent sounded like he had the right idea at first…but then the article goes on to say that they’ve had trouble with this crazy Dad in the past because he didn’t like how the school pick up and drop off car lines worked. So he picketed. Awesome! That sounds stable and normal! No bullying here, no sir!
Parents. Stop it. You’re embarrassing yourselves. You’re doing exactly what you are accusing the teachers and administrators of doing. You’re using the internet and the media to create a bully firestorm – in the name of “standing up for your child” – as if a parent who chooses to work WITH the school is lame and is failing their kid.
Teachers and administrators are dropping like FLIES, people. They don’t get paid enough, they work ridiculous hours, they not only have to manage your child’s EDUCATION (which – last I checked – was kind of a big deal), they have to manage cultural differences, language barriers, friendships, safety on the playground (no playing, running, climbing, or fun and don’t get shot or kidnapped), and now more than ever they have to manage YOU. The parents.
I’m all for “standing up” for your kids. I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again – when I think it’s necessary. I absolutely stand by my work about eating healthy in schools (which is not a new concept btw. I didn’t start that one. But I support it) and keeping the sugar to a minimum during school parties. But most of that is not school-related. It’s PARENT RELATED. It’s the parents who plan the parties. It’s the parents who bring donuts, cupcakes, cookies and candy to the schools.
Side note: I write this stuff and then have to attend these events at the school. It’s not very fun for me because I know that when I rock the boat that it makes people mad. But I also know that if someone who disagreed with me simply approached me to discuss it, I’d happily engage in the conversation. Most of the time, however, I get quiet whispers behind my back and dirty looks. These are the people who read every word I ever write just so they can be appropriately appalled by it. Whatever. Come talk to me about it, chickens. I’m actually pretty nice in person.
I’m calling for an end to parent-driven school bullying. The kind where parents threaten, intimidate and humiliate schools who have hardly any recourse because they are bound legally to NOT disclose any additional information that could implicate the parents in any way shape or form. It can go in the file and can be discussed privately – but schools can’t call the news and say, “This parent is a bully and we can prove it.”
Is there a happy medium? Can we work together with schools instead of attacking them? Yes, I believe so. I believe it’s possible. And when it’s not, I also believe that you can manage your child’s affairs privately with school staff and administrators. Every struggle within the school regarding your child doesn’t have to be an opportunity for you to cry on your Facebook page, “MY CHILD IS A VICTIM AND IT’S THE SCHOOL’S FAULT.”
Instead of pushing your kid out of the way and TAKING A STAND, involve your child in the process of negotiation. Explain to them that there’s something you see that you don’t agree with. Show them how to manage a compromise wherein both parties sit down and discuss openly some solutions for the issue at hand. I’m not saying every person at every school will be 100% agreeable. But I bet you’d be surprised. Teachers and administrators want your kids to be successful. They go to school to study how to make that happen.
Before you get on your megaphone, smart phone or camera phone – think of the example you could be setting for your kids.
Give the school a chance to work for you before you start working on bullying them.
You want to stop bullies? Start with you.