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OnMyOwn

WWYD - Conflicts with Class Time

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Well, you are the parent and ultimately in charge of her schooling. You have to decide what is best for your daughter to do, and I it sounds like you already know what she needs to do - miss science classes. 

 

When approaching a friend-teacher in this circumstance, I'd lay out my concerns first. I really don't want to hurt your feelings blah, blah, blah... It's no reflection on you as a teacher... My daughter really enjoys your class, etc. HOWEVER commitments to another class - Latin - are going to keep her from attending some of your classes. In addition we already had a vacation scheduled prior to knowing she'd miss these other classes...

 

Ultimately, you are using this science class as one piece of her science education. You are in charge of how to educate her and her grades. For an outside class commitment, you should keep the agreement you made - pay the teacher, do any required volunteering, etc. Some classes like drama, it is more dependent on the student being there so that everyone can practice. Attendance requirements should be laid out up front for those classes. For science, I'd make sure it is known that you don't expect her to slow down or give your daughter special treatment. Also that her missing the classes is not a reflection on the teacher, but just due to other class and family commitments.

 

It can be tough dealing with friends and dealing with homeschooling flexibility. Unlike other schools, you are not putting all the responsibility of educating your daughter in the hands of other teachers. 

Edited by Julie of KY

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Do what is best for your daughter. Since your dd would be able to do the class work at home, on her own, without requiring any additional/extra effort/time from the teacher, it sounds like the primary issue is the bio teacher's feelings about your dd missing class. There's nothing you can do about her feelings. It's commendable that you take the co-op class seriously enough that you're torn about missing class, but those opportunities (JCL & translation contest) are too great to miss. That happens & the co-op teacher, if she's been doing this for a while and/or if she's been through the college app process, must know that you need to prioritize your dd's needs and goals.

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Thank you, Julie and Yvonne! I have been really torn about this, feeling like it makes the most sense for my dd to participate in the Latin competitions, but also feeling like we had already made a commitment to the class. I think I'm going to bite the bullet and let the teacher know she will be participating in the competitions and that I am sorry about her missing those days because I know how much she has put into making it a great class.

Edited by OnMyOwn

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I teach a high school science class. I don't mind when people miss. I see my role as being there to help them. If they choose to miss, that's their choice.

 

I do have strict policies about assignments. I won't accept anything late for any reason (except illness). I will help them work ahead but I've learned over the years that I don't have the time to accommodate requests to turn things in late. So if they want a grade from me they have to keep up with assignments even if they are absent. And I can't typically take the time to give extra help to students who are missing a lot due to other commitments.

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The teacher's feelings? Of course, as a teacher (and I teach science at a hybrid school), I want all my students to attend every class and to be on time for every class. However, this teacher sounds like she is taking the absence personally. 

 

You need to do what is best for your family. 

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The teacher's feelings? Of course, as a teacher (and I teach science at a hybrid school), I want all my students to attend every class and to be on time for every class. However, this teacher sounds like she is taking the absence personally.

 

You need to do what is best for your family.

Honestly, I think she was probably just really overwhelmed with everything she had going on at the time and likely regrets her response to me. But that reaction has made me question myself about whether it okay to have my dd miss the class for her Latin stuff.

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Honestly, I think she was probably just really overwhelmed with everything she had going on at the time and likely regrets her response to me. But that reaction has made me question myself about whether it okay to have my dd miss the class for her Latin stuff.

 

Part of it can be in the semantics. There is a difference in how the following two statements will be perceived by a teacher:

 

"I will have to miss class for xyz important reason. Can I still take the class/be successful/what do I need to do to catch up?"

and

"I will have to miss class for xyz important reason. Is this OK/Will I miss anything important?"

The second implies that not attending is "OK" and that class may not be important, which is annoying for the teacher who prepares and makes sure to use class time wisely.

 

This poem by Tom Wayman is nice in the context:

https://www.loc.gov/poetry/180/013.html

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I teach a high school science class. I don't mind when people miss. I see my role as being there to help them. If they choose to miss, that's their choice.

 

I do have strict policies about assignments. I won't accept anything late for any reason (except illness). I will help them work ahead but I've learned over the years that I don't have the time to accommodate requests to turn things in late. So if they want a grade from me they have to keep up with assignments even if they are absent. And I can't typically take the time to give extra help to students who are missing a lot due to other commitments.

 

 

Part of it can be in the semantics. There is a difference in how the following two statements will be perceived by a teacher:

 

"I will have to miss class for xyz important reason. Can I still take the class/be successful/what do I need to do to catch up?"

and

"I will have to miss class for xyz important reason. Is this OK/Will I miss anything important?"

The second implies that not attending is "OK" and that class may not be important, which is annoying for the teacher who prepares and makes sure to use class time wisely.

 

This poem by Tom Wayman is nice in the context:

https://www.loc.gov/poetry/180/013.html

 

When we were in a coop, there was a week each year when were committed to a multiday swim meet.  I would teach my session and then load my kids in the car.  They had to coordinate with their other teachers to determine what they were missing and if they needed to turn anything in ahead of time or via email.

 

I likewise had students who had conflicts from things like big musicals or family trips.  The students who were successful looked at the syllabus and made sure they turned in work and otherwise kept up.  The students who were not successful were those who took weeks away from class because of a conflict, did not do any work in the subject while they were missing coop and never really got around to completing assignments, even late.

 

A lot depends on if the coop class issues a grade and is the only source of instruction in that subject or if it is a supplement (like just being a lab class) that could be made up with home based work.

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