Tuesday, September 18, 2007

More Griping and Moaning, Via E-Mail

I couldn't be a bigger fan of the electronic mail; it lets us be in touch in an instant. However, there comes a time when parents should have those privileges revoked. Today, I encountered such an instance.

I have a student who is floundering. She barely passed the big state test in reading last year. Her parents are divorced. Dad is an assistant principal in the district and he has access to e-mail. He fired one off this morning, basically making me feel like I am some kind of incompotent nitwit without one iota of common or professional sense.

He let me know, in no uncertain terms, that his daughter could read on a much higher level than I had said. Her problem, in his esteemed estimation, was one of motivation. He told me that my assessment tools were unscientific and fraudulent and he had written his Master's thesis to prove it. Now, I am not the biggest fan of AR in the entire world, but I am not stupid enough to tell a parent, any parent, that his child was only assessed using one tool. I have made certain that I backed up the STAR test with other assessments - and scientific or not, my STAR test results are often backed up by other tests.

The fifth grade counts AR as one test grade for the entire nine weeks. He is bent out of shape over that. Funny, he didn't have anything to say about it a month ago during Back to School Night. A month ago, he didn't have a problem with it. Now that we're half way through the nine weeks, his precious has only gotten 0.9 AR points. Fifth graders are supposed to have 20 for an A. If his precious already had 17 points, his panties wouldn't be in a knot.

He insisted that we not grade for AR. The county doesn't support it. The data is unscientific. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. State standards require fifth graders to read 1,000,000 words this year. AR tracks those words. We assign grades to those words. It is called accountability.

This is his problem. He is the father of two children, both of them identified for our intervention program. This is troubling for him, as it makes him look bad. He doesn't care one whit about anything other than how this will make him look. Oh, yeah. And getting back at his ex-wife. That is playing in here somehow. He let me know that he didn't know what kind of standards his ex-wife held his children to, but when they were with him, he expected quite a bit from them.


I e-mailed him my best sweet Southern girl. And I let him have it. I wasn't in Nancy Grace's sorority for nothing.

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Blogger cupcake said...

Oh, good grief. That dude sounds like HE needs the intervention.

Good luck with his spawn. If the email doesn't work out, let Nancy have a whack at him.

9/18/2007 9:19 PM  
Blogger The Vegas Art Guy said...

OH, boy the joy of dealing with management. Maybe if he spent more time reading with his kids, they'd do better. It worked with my daughter. I still haven't gotten my copy of Esperanza Rising back and that was summer of 06. lol

9/19/2007 1:13 AM  

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