Thursday, January 31, 2008
The Public School - Part II
Thanks so much to all of you who gave me such encouraging comments. It really helps when you know others have gone through similar experiences and that you are not going crazy. Sometimes I wonder if other parents get upset or if their is something just wrong with me. Thanks for letting me know I am not alone.

We finally got things taken care of after hubby called and spoke with his counselor. The teacher refused to release Zach from the class and the counselor stopped returning my phone calls.

Dave called yesterday afternoon and amazingly got a call back a little while later. The counselor overruled the teacher and switched his class.

I do want to state that I believe we have a really good High School. We have an engineering department that may rival many colleges. Our children are able to take many classes that they would not be able to if they went to a smaller school. However, because of its size, parents need to be very pro active in making sure their childrens needs are met. We need to be confident in our rights as parents and never let the school forget that they work for us and we, the parents, ultimately will be deciding what is best for our child.

That being said.....we went to the High School baseball meeting last night. This is a required meeting for all parents. We are told the "rules".

I had heard the speech from the head coach before. I enjoyed watching the faces of the freshman parents.

Let me explain.

The baseball program is run much like the military. The players are expected to act and dress a certain way. Excuses are not accepted. If you don't wear a belt to practice you spend the afternoon running laps.

The players are given all the rules, in writing, and are expected to follow them. If they have a problem regarding the team they are expected to talk with the coach. He will not talk with a parent until the player has made the effort to resolve the problem himself.

If a player gets into trouble in class he will be sent to the coach. Forget the Prinicpal's office. The true fear is being sent to the coach during his class where he will scold you in front of his entire class. Just the thought of this keeps most players in line.

Some of the parents really dislike the coach's philosophy. I happen to love it.

At some point we have to let our kids take responsiblity for themselves. This is the perfect atmosphere to do so. The coach is hard. True. However, he is fair. He keeps his word, and I have never seen him act inapproprieately (or you know I would have gotten involved).

Last year Zach was scheduled to pitch for a Friday afternoon game. He was sick on the Thursday before and forgot to call the coach and tell him he would not be at practice that day. The next day he went to school and when he arrived at the bus to travel to the game was told he would not be the starting pitcher because he had not called in sick the day before. When Dave and I arrived at the game we were surprised to see our son sitting on the bench. Some of the other parents explained to us what had happened. They encouraged us to complain to the coach as they didn't see how it was Zach's fault. I asked Zach about this after the game and he told us he forgot they were suppose to call when they were sick (this was his first year on the team) but that they had been told this was what they were required to do.

I don't really understand the parents that felt some sort of outrage for our child. He had been told what to do. He didn't do it. He suffered the consequesnces. Do you think he will ever forget this rule again? The answer is No.

Only 46 students per year of the over 5000 at this school have the opportunity to play on the three baseball teams. That is less than one percent of the school population. This is a Division I school and it is an honor to be picked for one of these teams. If our boys don't want to get the grades, act respectfully, and follow the rules I am sure their is another player who would love to take their place on the team.

At the end of the meeting I went up to thank the coach for filling out the school informatin form for our social worker. Each of the kids had to have one filled out by a teacher. He got it done in one day and sent it right off.

When I thanked him he told me how much he enjoyed having Zach on his team. That he was a really nice young man and alway very respectful of others.

Of course now I think he is the best coach ever. Ahem.

This morning I got a call from a mom of one of the freshman boys that I would say is even a bigger control freak than I am. She wanted to know if the coach really meant all that stuff he said. Yep. How will the boys ever remember all that on their own? I assured her that her son would do fine. She wasn't so sure. I asked her if she was planning on going with him to his first job to help him remember everything. Well, no she replied. Than perhaps you better let him learn now.

She wasn't very happy. Neither was I last year. Honestly, I believe it has been one of the best things for my son.

See, their is hope for me. I am learning to let my controling ways go just a little.

Have a great day my friends.

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  posted at 10:14 AM  

At 12:07 PM, Blogger Kelli said...

Great post. I think the coach has the right idea. Completely. I wish more teachers and, well, parents, had this philosophy :)

At 1:09 PM, Blogger Heidi @ GGIP said...

Great post. Kids that age can learn responsibility. My father is a college professor and he now OFTEN gets calls from parents complaining about grades and stupid stuff. That is ridiculous. Their kids are adults. It also just started happening in the last ~5 years.

At 6:05 AM, Blogger Michelle said...

Wow! Impressive. You bet your son won't forget to call in sick again. I've learned some of my best lessons in life by dealing with the consequences of my actions. Good for you for standing behind the coach on that one.

At 1:10 PM, Blogger LISA said...

I think most kids end up having more respect for a coach (or teacher) like this.

At 10:00 PM, Blogger Momma said...

Sounds like a good coach and a good mom gleaning from him. Btw, we attended a retreat last weekend with the author of our homeschool curriculum. One of the couples there had 7 children, 3 adopted last year from Ethiopia.
adoptive mom of 4.

At 7:37 PM, Blogger Melanie said...

I'm so glad to hear that the coach is strict by firm and doesn't back down on his rules. Kids NEED to learn to take responsibility for things and that they can't just slide through life. Good for him!

At 4:46 AM, Blogger Lori said...

Oh my you've had a lot on your plate lately! Hang in there, you're taking the right approach in my opinion.

At 5:52 PM, Blogger Qtpies7 said...

Sports and pleasing a coach has been one of THE best things in my son's life. He has learning disabilities, and he will work harder than ever to be sure to swim for his coach. Coach has nothing but praise for him. He is getting 4th-5th place and his coach is telling him he is a swimming star and that when he is a junior/senior he will be kicking butt, etc. Man, that guy knows how to motivate my son! I wouldn't interfere with his coaching for the world.
And if you check out my WW today, you will see what he has done! Varsity swimming, 9th grader, TWO blue ribbons!!!!! And not a single F on his report card so he can swim.


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I am a spontaneous, out going, daughter of the King, who is married to a wonderful guy who is a quiet, shy, non-spontaneous, scientist who also loves the Lord. Truly a match made in heaven! We fight and argue, love and laugh, every single day. I am passionate about orphan care and love to tell our story to anyone who will listen. This blog is dedicated to that journey.

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