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DDs teacher said whaaaat?!

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Want2help posted 6/14/2014 18:45 PM

My DD is 5, and attends a small, private preschool (she's been there for almost 3 months). Her teacher seems like a nice enough woman, but we have some cultural differences (she is from India, I am from a "liberal" city in the NW, and I'm pretty feminist), so that may or may not have anything to do with the following issue:

This morning, on our way to do some shopping, DD was talking about a boy who drew her a picture. She was talking about his name and all of the things this boy says and does, rambling on, then she says-

"Mrs.______ told us to call (little boy) a girl. I don't know what he did, but he must have done a 'girl thing', because she told us to call him a girl."

I tried not to overreact, and asked under what circumstances the teacher encouraged the students to call him a girl? She does not know, but she said that all of the kids laughed at the boy.

She then told me that even the little boy's "best friend" laughed, causing the little boy to claim that they are "not best friends anymore" because of it.


I am absolutely livid. As far as I am concerned, unless this boy came out as being transgendered, there is no reason on God's green earth why this teacher should be encouraging the other students to call him a girl.

#1, I think using status as a female as an insult is disgusting and offensive to me, and I will not have my daughter being taught that girls are the lesser. It is NOT okay to say someone "throws like a girl" or "hits like a girl", etc.

#2, I feel this teacher was encouraging bullying! Telling her class, which is around a dozen students, to hurt the feelings of another student?

We're leaving on vacation tomorrow, but I will be contacting the director as soon as I get back. My only problem is that I have already had to have a meeting already, over one of the aids telling my daughter that her parents will "get over it" (regarding incorrect sunblock application, which really wasn't a big deal, but telling DD "you parents will get over it" really upset her for some reason, and totally undermined our authority).

So, any advice on how to approach this situation would be greatly appreciated. I feel like not everyone has the same views as me, and the director (and owner, if I can get that far up the ladder) may not see it as that big of a deal.

[This message edited by Want2help at 6:46 PM, June 14th (Saturday)]

purplejacket4 posted 6/14/2014 19:24 PM

I think you're spot on. Just calmly report the facts as relayed by your daughter. Unless the director is a moron they'll get it.

Myname posted 6/14/2014 19:32 PM

I would go to the principal or whoever is in charge of the school and let them know what DD told you. I would focus your complaint on the fact that the teacher is encouraging bullying. I think that would be a much stronger argument. Bullying is a big no no these days for students or teachers to do.

Just to say I had a teacher in 1st grade that encouraged the class to regularly pick on me and call me names. I was eventually removed from the class after I stopped wanting to go to school. My parents had to talk to the principal a few times before I was taken out of the class.

meaniemouse posted 6/14/2014 23:37 PM

I would talk directly to the teacher first, find out what she says then talk to the director. I'd want to hear first hand why anyone, especially a teacher would encourage that type of behavior in children, let alone tell them it's ok. This is more than just a cultural difference; this is not someone who should be teaching anyone, especially 5 year olds.

Bluebird26 posted 6/15/2014 04:28 AM

I would talk to the teacher first. Get the whole story first. Then if necessary take all that info to the director.

I work in a school, trust me there is always 3 sides to every story.

Not saying this is acceptable if this is what actually occurred but I think it's important to get all the facts first otherwise if this is simply a misunderstanding in the future if you have an issue the director may not take your issue seriously.

tesla posted 6/15/2014 07:00 AM

Teacher here. Talk to the teacher first. Report what child said, ask if she can fill in the rest and then take it to the principal if you are still concerned.

thebighurt posted 6/15/2014 07:39 AM

I had a similar issue years ago with a high school teacher who belittled and bullied girls to the amusement of the males all around him, not just male students. He was a bit of a 'folk hero' among the males.

Attitudes at that time were such that nothing I said to anyone involved with the school changed anything. A number of years later, attitudes changed and he was 'punished' for his actions by being suspended *WITH pay* until they sorted it out!

Raspberry posted 6/15/2014 08:59 AM

Breaks my heart!!!

hurtbs posted 6/15/2014 09:01 AM

I would strongly urge you to talk to the teacher first. I am a teacher and the "filter" between child and parent is often an interesting one. Children at that young of an age often do not understand the situation or environment or take unique experiences from it.

Bring it to the teacher in a very non-confrontational way - "Hey, my daughter said this happened in class and it concerns me. Could you clarify the situation for me?" If you find out that there is a reason for concern, then bring it to the principle.

Chrysalis123 posted 6/15/2014 09:54 AM

I would strongly urge you to talk to the teacher first. I am a teacher and the "filter" between child and parent is often an interesting one. Children at that young of an age often do not understand the situation or environment or take unique experiences from it.

I am also a kindergarten teacher. Many times young children retell a story only from their point of view and sometimes completely miss the mark of what really happened. This could be something very innocent and not inappropriate....it also could be inappropriate.

I would bring it up with the teacher first with mama bear claws fully retracted.

FirstLoveGone posted 6/15/2014 10:21 AM

Can we take a step back and realize that kids aren't always the best at accurately re-telling events? Heck, my DD is 8 and she sometimes manages to misconstrue things.

In the past month, I have had to contact my DD's teacher over things my DD thinks she said. I approach it as, "Hey, Mrs. XX, DD told me that you discussed XX with her, can you let me know what this was about? I don't want to solely rely on DD's re-telling."

You need an accurate assessment of the facts before determining your next course of action.

Want2help posted 6/15/2014 16:18 PM

These answers are why I can never picture my life without the collective wisdom of SI.

I will calm down, and not do anything until AFTER we're home from vacation, when I'm more calm, then I will discuss it with the teacher.

Audrina posted 6/21/2014 14:34 PM

This oould be a misunderstanding...please ask the teacher. You don't want to run to the director when you you have not spoken to the teacher and get the whole story.

I work as a preschool teacher and have experienced how children can say things that are misunderstood or embellished.
You should hear some of the stories some children tell me about their parents.
And when I ask the parents it is not what it seems and we have a laugh about it.
I urge you to speak with the teacher.

[This message edited by Audrina at 4:07 PM, June 21st (Saturday)]

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