What say the peas: is this helicoptering, or am I a slacker? Difference of opinion with dh

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Posted 10/3/2012 by gryroagain in NSBR Board
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PeaNut 44,870
August 2002
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Posted: 10/3/2012 11:45:32 AM
I have a sophomore. I don't do conferences for him anymore. I have nothing to discuss with his teachers. My kid currently has a 4.66 GPA, I think he's got a grip on his education. Going wouldn't impart to him that "I care" or am "involved because it's so important".

If one of my kids is having a problem, of course I get involved and talk to teachers. But wasting both of our time to hear, 'He's a great kid, gets his work done on time, is very polite and studious'? Nah. I don't need the ego strokes and the teachers have plenty of other people they do need to be talking to.

"When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself." -- Wayne Dyer


PeaNut 123,049
January 2004
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Posted: 10/3/2012 12:03:57 PM
This is the first year both our girls are in high school.

For my senior, I go to at least one session a year. They usually have two. If I go to the second one, it's only to meet new teachers. She's had a 4.0+ all the way thru and there are teachers I skip b/c they clearly think its silly for me to come. With the other teachers, I go to meet them before there is an issue so we both at least have met. I don't anticipate one, but you never know with teens. I also go to the teachers I might have questions about their program, like my daughters first AP class, for example.

My freshman is different. She's more of a solid B+ student and can gradually slip off course to being a C+ student due to flaky kidness. I feel with her it's important to stay in touch.

That being said, it IS still both girls responsibility to stay on track and deal with issues (a couple of the freshman teachers are chronic assignment losers, so one really has to watch the online grade system. Both girls deal with that on their own.

Anyway, I don't think slacker or helicopter applies here. DH and i are pretty hands off with schoolwork other than going to an annual meeting. I would not call that hovering

IMO though, with your DD being in only two classes, i think its a good idea for one of you to go to make sure your family is "plugged in" to school life. If DH wants to go, he represents the family and that is sufficient. But if you ultimately decide that neither will go, I wouldn't judge.

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PeaNut 337,804
September 2007
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Posted: 10/3/2012 12:08:57 PM
Another thought is to email the 2 teachers and tell them you can't make it that day but you'd be glad to schedule another time to talk to them if they think it's necessary. That way you'll get about as much feedback in an email that you would get sitting in front of them for 10 minutes.

And if the teachers say she's doing great and you don't need to go in, then you're in the clear. However if they say they need to speak to you then you should make a time to go in whether it's Monday or another time when you don't already have plans.

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PeaNut 3,902
April 2000
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Posted: 10/3/2012 12:23:28 PM
I think you should go. In fact I think you both should go. It's NOT about the kid being able to handle their schedule on their own. That has nothing to do with it. It's connecting with teachers, and showing your kid you care about them and their education. Not only do they talk about things in conferances that they need to improve on,but the GOOD things your kid is doing! It's all about connecting, and having a working relationship with the teachers that teach your kid. VS having the kid come home and complain or talk about a teacher, or praise a teacher and YOU know nothing about them.

Our school has conferances for all the kids K-12 2xs a yr. In HS you don't get scheduled, you go from teacher to teacher like someone else said. We usually only pick a few, or the ones our dd suggests. We love doing it. The teachers love talking to us, and getting to know us. It's a WIN Win thing. BOTH my dh and I go also. It shows our dd that we are BOTH involved and care!!

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PeaNut 5,735
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Posted: 10/3/2012 4:38:01 PM
School is important! By having both parents blow off the opportunity to meet with their instructors sends, IMO, the message that it's not.

When my children are in college, that's different. At this point, I foresee being available to my children's teachers until they graduate high school.


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PeaNut 223,117
September 2005
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Posted: 10/3/2012 4:47:06 PM
If it just a delayed start that means it is just an hour or so of your life, still leaving you with PLENTY of time to enjoy a blissful afternoon to yourself. My vote, go! You are sending a message to your children and the staff that they are important. Why just because they hit highschool does that mean your are off duty? It is not saying you are hand holding, you are accomodating the schools request.


PeaNut 146,398
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Posted: 10/3/2012 5:07:04 PM
Kudos to the school for keeping the lines of communication open.

It's NOT all about the grades. A kid can be doing spectacularly well academically, and not so well in other arenas. The reverse is also true.

I want to know what my kids are like as students, as classroom citizens, as social creatures in that setting. As a teacher, it's amazing how differently one child can be experienced by different teachers in the same year.

Also, remember some of these teachers might be writing letters of re ommendation in a few years. It would be good to know how they see your child.

By all means, send your DH, and take your day off.

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PeaNut 163,613
August 2004
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Posted: 10/4/2012 12:26:04 PM
I'd love it if our school did that.

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PeaNut 463,630
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Posted: 10/4/2012 12:43:02 PM
Thanks for the interesting replies!

Just to address a few people who thought dh was trying to horn in on my alone time, definitely not! He is great about it- I went on a solo 4 day trip to an island in May. He travels a lot for work and does things on his own, too. It isn't that at all- just a difference of opinion on whether these sorts of things are necessary at the high school level. Though I will admit that it falling on my "me time" day, and happening at 730 in the freaking morning, make it a lot less attractive!

DD doesn't care if we/I/dh goes or not- though she did mention a boy showing up in her music theory class for the first time this week, and he isn't new, he just skipped first period every day for 5 weeks, so maybe it makes sense to have the teacher- parent day! the recommendation angle is a good one, though- we will need those for a program she is interested in for next year. She missed the cut off to apply by 1 day, she has to be 15 by the date the program starts. So establishing a relationship would be good, but again- I expect her to do that, really. If they are going to write a recommendation for her, what do we have to do with it? But something to think about.

I think dh is going to go, I'm sleeping in and heading to the spa. DD is in 2 bands for home schooled kids that meet that day also, he will be busy!
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