When does parental involvement at school go from good to bad?

Parental involvement in a school can be a good thing as long as the parents know their place.  Many eyes have begun to roll after that first sentence, I know.  Schools want parents to be involved because most times, if parents are involved then the behavior problems are minimized and the students come prepared to learn.  Parental involvement can be good because different people bring new and fresh ideas.

Parents can have opinions and suggestions but they can't make demands.  It seems as though some parents think they are entitled to have their ideas put into place simply because they exist. Schools don't have to do what parents say.  Teachers and principals have the right to make decisions at their school without consulting the parents.  If you are consulted or asked your opinion, you should give it and feel privileged to have been asked.  Your input at your child's school is not a right, it is a privilege.  I am in no way suggesting that schools discourage parental involvement.  Parents are important to a school.  Things seem to get ugly when parents want something and they don't get it.  Slanderous emails about teachers are sent and some parents have threatened to stop donating money to schools because they didn't get what they wanted.  I once had a parent tell me that parents who donate a lot of money to a school should have some say as to what goes on in the classroom. WTF!!  If you own stock in a company, can you go to a shareholders' meeting and demand changes to company policies?  Microsoft, here I come!!  If schools knew that strings were attached to the donations that they received, I'm not so sure they would take them.

There seems to be a lack of respect towards teachers from parents.  Parents criticize teachers in the presence of their children.  Teachers are threatened with lawsuits.  Teachers are professionals just like doctors and lawyers and they should be treated as such.  Parents think that they can tell the teachers how to teach and interact with children.  How many parents would tolerate someone coming to their place of employment telling them how to do their job?  Parents everywhere, the school is the teachers' place of employment and you need to respect that fact.

Are teachers perfect? NO! There are no perfect parents either.  We are all flawed in some way.  At some point while your child is in school you may have an issue with a teacher.  The key is how you handle that issue.  Be respectful.


  1. I know exactly what you mean! Parents can have input, but they shouldnt make demands. Everyone should be respectful, and I have seen first hand how some are just plain hostile to their teachers, the administration and to other parents who volunteer there time.

  2. Teachers need to respect parents. Schools do need to consider the rights of staff and other students balanced against each individual family's expectations. They need to consider budget, time, developmental needs. But schools do not have the right to manipulate communication between parents, ie no class lists, parental involvement, ie no parents allowed to observe in class, and a parent's right and need to protect their child, not doing anything about bullying other than trying to label the kids whose parents complain.

  3. Parents should be involved in every aspect of their child's life, especially school. In this era it's vital. In public schools parents have great impact on what happens regarding the education process. Teachers and administrators focus too much on monies rather than the educational or academic quality our children receive. Teachers are younger and less concerned with what the student actually learns, its more about how much he/she can teach. There's no time for student questions, everything is homework, no classroom reviews, just testing, assign and test! There's no time for a child that struggles, he's just pushed on even though he didn't get it. Teachers do deserve the upmost respect. Teachers are the reason we have great lawyers doctors other teachers, but they must remember every child deserves a chance and to get respect you have to give respect. Parents stand up and stwnd out for your child(ten).

  4. Thank God I can homeschool my kids, teachers like the one who wrote the blog above are the reason I took my son out of public school. Are teachers a special class of professional that doesnt have to answer for poor performance? The NEA thinks so, they make it nearly impossible to fire even child molesters. All people deserve respect, parents teachers and even children. You arent special, like the rest of us if you dont do your job or you abuse people you should be fired. Parents have EVERY right to protect their kids even from teachers, that is their job. You should learn to respect that. We all pay your salary, you should answer to us all.