Sunday, March 15, 2009

Over The Line

I promised Rosie's mom I would call her any time Rosie was not in class. Friday afternoon I was forced to make my first call.

Surprisingly, Rosie answered the phone and when she realized I was on the other end, she put her mom right on. Rosie's mom was quite upset with Rosie. She thanked me for calling and asked for my e-mail address, which I readily gave her. Imagine my surprise when I opened an e-mail from her a few minutes ago and saw this:

Rosie's mom wants to stay in better touch using some of Google's coolest new products.

If you already have Gmail or Google Talk, visit: (I am omitting the website)
You'll need to click this link to be able to chat with Rosie's mom.

I replied with this:

Thank you for your e-mail. I do not chat on line but will be happy to address your concerns in an e-mail or on the phone.

I don't mind answering the e-mails. I don't mind the school phone calls or even an occasional evening phone call, but this one hit me by surprise.

I am not a KIPP teacher and I do have a life outside of school. Chatting online with parents is not something I want to do or care to do. Talk about stepping over the line.


Rachel Grynberg said...

Sounds like the mother is missing the point -- all that time wasted, she could've already talked to you. One problem I find is that the parents literally don't understand English very well. Not just linguistically -- they don't understand how critical arguments are made with it. I've talked to three parents in this new class I work with and I know THEY DON'T GET what is really going on. I've tried to be blunt, I've tried to be long, short, etc. I think what I will have to do is ask them to STOP TALKING and STOP THINKING and just listen to what I am describing. I tried to tell a parent that I was concerned because his son was sick -- and really sick -- two days in a row. He responded by being all angry. Finally, I just said, "I'm not angry with your kid. I'm just concerned that he's coming to school unable to function and he can't do that and expect to pass. You need to figure out what's going on with him physically." Long pause and then he said, "Oh. Okay." I thanked him and said goodnight.

I still don't know if he got it. If the kid comes in sick tomorrow, I'll know.

Anonymous said...

by the way, that email message you got from them is an automated message. She likely doesn't even know it went to you. A colleague recently forwarded a copy they had received "from" me. I had not sent it. So you might be reading too much into this one.