Year: 1998-1999
Month: October
Leader: Group G

Situation/Case Study:

If you have a concern with a student's speech you talk with speech teacher. In 3rd grade the teacher talked with me about this student. I called the parent. She said, "he has an overbite". The parent said, "Well you're not going to help him?" He did not qualify at that time for services. I tested him again this year. The principal decided to do academic testing also. He doesn't qualify. We had a meeting to talk about it. State law says this speech pattern does not qualify for direct services until student turns 9. The parent was nice in front of the principal. When he turned 9 we relooked at his situation. It involves articulation. Test again? No, I won't put him through it again said the speech teacher. This year the teacher came to see me. "He's hard to understand". He invited the parents in for a meeting. His dad and mom were glaring at each other during the meeting. We explained the interventions we had tried. Teacher used nice tone of voice. The parent said to me, "I'm sure you won't help him."


A teacher might feel threatened professionally since her work ethic is being questioned. "She won't work with him... doesn't want to...." A teacher might feel frustrated...challenged...angry...puzzled about what to do next. She feels frustrated and like she's not a trusted, qualified professional in this situation. A teacher in this situation would have conflicted feelings toward the parent. A teacher may feel hesitant to meet with any oppositional parent. This could limit her effectiveness. A teacher in such an event might feel frustrated, hesitant, and pressured because the parent's mood swings are unpredictable. The teacher might feel frustrated because her intention is to help the student and she's not receiving parent support. The teacher would feel obligated to help the child in this case because he is the innocent, helpless victim and the teacher would feel frustrated and angry about the mother's lack of respect for the teacher's professional opinion. A teacher in such a situation might feel conflicted over what to do next, because she wanted to help the student but was uneasy and uncomfortable to work with the parent. A teacher in this situation would feel vulnerable due to the lack of support and controlling nature of the school administrator. A teacher in this situation feels frustrated because the parent has undermined her good intention for child and her professionalism. She might feel frustrated and confused...because not everyone is treated this way by her (mom). The teacher in this situation would feel quite frustrated because she is unable to help a student who needs her help. The parent is unwilling to cooperate for whatever reason. The principal is supportive to a point, but does not want to upset the parent further.

Theories behind practice:
Maintained temper. Documenting all interactions. Sticking to procedures. Former teachers were consulted. Continued to be professional. Separated child from parent.

Impact on others:


Context of the child helps us to understand the case better. Wish there was a class in the teacher education program about overpowering, manipulative parents. Label - can see fear from the label.