Calling home? Ask questions first.

April’s grade was falling. April was acting out in class. April was withdrawn when I spoke to her individually.

This was not normal for April.

When I first met April, she was funny, outgoing, and got along well with most everyone. I liked her immediately. When February came around and April began to change, I tried several times to speak with her about what might be bothering her, but wasn’t getting anywhere. I decided to call home.

When I called, I told April’s mother that April’s grade was slipping and her attitude in class was not appropriate. Her mother interrupted me saying, “the miscarriage has really gotten her down lately”.

(pause)

“I’m sorry, I had no idea she was dealing with such a tragedy.”
She informed me that the school counselor had been informed and was supposed to inform her teachers.

Didn’t you get the memo?

Needless to say, I had a much better understanding of the changes April was exhibiting. I also had very different concerns for her.

From then on, whenever calling home I have asked, “How has ______ been doing lately?”

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This entry was posted in Classroom Management, Relationships, Teacher Actions. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Calling home? Ask questions first.

  1. Angela says:

    Wow, that’s powerful. Thanks for sharing the reminder that are students are people first.

    Like

  2. Malm says:

    A lesson that can be applied in multiple areas. Not that I’ve been calling my employee’s parents a lot lately but it’s good to remember that people are people.

    Like

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