Something to think about. The “Bad” Parents.


Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan 1888


I understand some people out there think there are “bad” parents. I understand that. I can understand that perspective, but if you’re a teacher and you think this way I want you for one second to think differently.

Think about what a bad parent is and who defines it?

Does a “bad” parent seem to always fit in a certain socio-economic class?

Is this person who is defined as  a “bad” parent, the definition that is defined by the media,  is that person truly a “bad” parent?

I work in the inner city.  I’ve never met a “bad” parent.  I know there are parents that  I don’t see, but I don’t know if they are bad or not. I don’t know what a person I don’t see is doing.  I know I have their child in my classroom. That is what I know.  That is the only statement I can make about a person I don’t see.

There are studies that say parents are a big factor in a child”s education. If you can’t make your child a genius then you’re a bad parent?

I don’t believe that.

I don’t believe that because someone is poor, working 12 hour days, can’t read in English that they are a bad parent.

I don’t believe someone is a bad parent  because they are poor, unemployed, suffering from mental health issues, and do not understand math.

We all do what we can.

As a teacher what you think of a child’s parent and their neighborhood translates to that child.

How effective do you think you will be as a teacher if a child can read on your face that they’re one of the kids who has a parent that doesn’t care or that their neighborhood is a slum? How effective can you be with that attitude?

Am I saying to ignore the realities of life, no.  What I am saying is that from the minute you walk in the classroom and put on your teacher pumps or loafers you have to go into suspension of disbelief mode.

You have to be a leader and a leader believes that things will work out.

A leader doesn’t show the team that it’s hopeless or that they are hopeless. A leader makes you feel that you are the greatest person in the world.

A kid can’t feel great if they believe their parents are crummy.

A kid can’t feel great if they believe their neighborhood is crummy.

As a teacher perspective is everything.

Try your best.  Don’t waste valuable energy on things you can’t change.

Society’s ills can’t be changed by being annoyed, because a parent didn’t return a phone-call.

Mrs  F


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