Friday, December 12, 2008

Not MY child!

So there is a wonderful gut wrenching feeling that tends to come over a mother's body when she sees the bus driver escorting her six year old son off the bus with a bloody lip. It is a cross between knee weakening panic and mind blowing rage. It is in this state that most information coming out of the bus driver's mouth sounds like, "wah wah wah, see his lip, well, wah wah wah wah wah - fight with (name of other kid)- wah wah wah wah wah - may not be able to ride bus - wah wah wah wah wah wah - just wanted to let you know!"

Uhm, okay - thank you, thank you for the "wah wah wah" information - (I now have to either kill my child or go google the house of (child's name) and kill them....)

Wait - take a breath - get story - find out what happened -

Max, baby - what happened?
It all (child's name)'s fault!!! He pushed me and I TRIED to tell a teacher but she wouldn't listen to me and he kept pushing me and so I pushed him back and then he hit me and then the teacher yelled at us and NOW I can't have recess tomorrow and it as all (child's name)'s fault and now he is my enemy and it's not FAIR!!!!!!
Wait - this is (child's name) from you class? I thought he was one of your best friends?
He isn't ANYMORE - now he is my enemy.....
Okay - that is a very serious word and I do not like you using it. You may not like what he did today, but that doesn't mean you won't be friends again.

Okay - so now I have 2 parts of this story - the "wah wah wah" information from the bus driver and the run on sentence from the "life is not fair" kindergartener. Okay - next - immediately call teacher at school.

This is Max's mom
I heard what happened...
What did happen?
Well, you tell me what you know
(Okay, now I am starting to feel like I am in a Abbott and Costello routine)
Well bus driver was vague - (always best to not let teacher know mind blowing rage prevented you from hearing anything but Charlie Brown teacher voice when bus driver was speaking) and Max was too upset to discuss calmly. But honestly - I know boys can be boys - I am really not worried about the fight - I am worried that this happens more often than not and we need to address this at home. Are you having trouble with Max?
Well, I am going to talk with both of the boys tomorrow.
(I don't want YOU to talk with them - I want to talk with MY son) Thank you - I appreciate that - but I just want to make sure that we do everything we can to make your job easier - so please - the moment you have any issues, please let us know and we will take care of it immediately.
You know (child's name) is such a sweet boy, I just cannot imagine this happening with these boys.
(I DON'T CARE ABOUT THE OTHER BOY) I have no doubt this was a boys will be boys situation - I just don't want to go from Max is doing great to Max is being kicked off the bus because of a fight - there is a lot of grey in between and I want to correct the situation BEFORE we get there.

I do not play the nicey nice game well at all - I am a meat and bones kind of person. I am a get to the point, the real point, and only the point person. So the dance around the topic and think of the nicest sugar coated way to say everything approach pretty much drives me bonkers. The fact that most education systems now days have a "don't say that" policy layered with a "no tolerance" policy is, quite frankly, absurd. Don't speak frankly with a parent about anything, but the moment something hits the fan - the kid is out, no questions asked, no discussion. WAIT - WHOA - aren't we missing a few steps here?

Now do not get me wrong - I know the system is not perfect - nothing is - including my child - my child was 50% responsible for that fight and trust me - I don't care who started it, we ended it. Both my husband and I had long talks with Max yesterday and today and this morning we both met the bus driver to witness the apology and discuss the fact that it was never going to happen again.

This time I was much calmer and "wah wah wah" turned into - it didn't happen on the bus, he didn't see it happen - he has no idea why they threatened to take them off the bus because he has never had problems with either child.

So the rest of the story is - I have a bus driver who tells me the kids never give him a problem - I have a school teacher who says she never has a problem with the kids - and I have a child who tells me that a (bus duty) teacher would not listen to him when he tried to do the right thing so it escalated when the kids got frustrated.

Now I have to google (bus duty) teacher... listen lady - don't ignore my child when he is trying to follow the rules then threaten him when things escalate behind your back.

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