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Add/Drop Period Woes...
Old 08-29-2019, 01:56 PM
 
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I'm a high school teacher with a colleague who teaches many of the same (world language) classes. While we have different styles, we teach the same curriculum. She is definitely more experienced, but I'm doing better each year. I always dread this add/drop period (second week of school), because I inevitably overhear students talking about switching to her class (or vice versa, sometimes students try to get into my class). It hurts my feelings when they switch out, but I know I shouldn't take it so personally (or I'll go crazy). I'm already stressing over the potential changes to my class roster. Have any of you had students drop your class because they prefer your colleague? I just had to get it out, thanks for reading.


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Old 08-29-2019, 05:26 PM
 
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I TOTALLY get it. I'd one hundred percent feel the same way.
I will say, from the outside point of view, that the adds/drops may have nothing to do with you (seriously). DD's in high school. Her "friend" just transferred into her history class. Why? Because she wanted to be with DD. (DD's annoyed by the girl's drama so is less than thrilled. She was like, "Well, she can't sit next to me. The teacher assigns seats and there's no empty one near me.") So it could be something like that.
It could also be something to do with you but something ridiculous. DD's WORST class so far in high school was taught by a teacher who was, objectively speaking, an amazing teacher. She was just really not the right one for DD. Teacher was nice, very personable, put up with me quite a bit, kind to DD, nationally board certified and very experienced. I liked her. She's a good teacher. I second guess my decision to keep DD in the class because they just didn't mesh. DD could tell within a week that their styles didn't match and I was like, 'It'll be fine." It wasn't. Everyone survived but I'd have switched her if I had to do it over again.
And sometimes? Students may prefer one teacher over another for completely ridiculous reasons.
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Old 08-29-2019, 07:13 PM
 
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Elementary teacher here-so there isnt an add drop period per se but there are the times in last few years I have had 2 students/parents ask for their child to be moved to another class. 1 was the second day of my first year at a new school and I was sure that it was going to seal my fate and get me non renewed. and why did mom and dad demand he be moved-I collected everyone's extra pencils to store for the kids because they dont need 24 pencils in their desk at a time because then they just loose them all and have none-that was all it took they DEMANDED he be moved or they would sue

It is crushing. I have cried because it hurt my feelings. I have cried because it stressed me out.

Yes we need to grow thick skins as teacher but its easier said than done. And yes we always tell each other that when a student is moved the person "dodged a bullet"-but it still hurts and feels like someone called you crappy at something that you have dedicated no small amount of time, money, and passion to be great at. Keep trying to grow that thick skin, but we are all still human.

Last edited by Kinderkr4zy; 08-29-2019 at 07:56 PM..
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Old 08-30-2019, 01:08 AM
 
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This is my second year in middle school, and yes, drop/add is frustrating. I always wonder about students who signed up for a class, come one day, and decide to leave. The only thing we did was hand out the syllabus and talk about the class! Even weirder is when it's students I've already had, and they know how I teach. I think a lot of it has to do with other students. The kids talk to each other outside of class and compare notes, and I think the kids who drop sometimes get talked into it. But for me, the more frustrating thing is the class roster, which changes and changes and changes... I printed my final set Wednesday, and on Thursday a new student showed up in a class, so I had to print that one again. Third time in a week.
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Add/drop
Old 08-30-2019, 01:35 AM
 
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I taught HS English for many years. Now retired. Students change their schedules for a wide variety of reasons.....to be with a friend, girlfriend, or boyfriend; to get away from a rival; to get a different lunch schedule if a school has dual lunches; to accommodate a class change of a different subject; to get a better schedule for sports or an after school job; to get an easier class or teacher; to get a harder teacher (yes, this does occasionally happen); because they don't want a certain subject at a particular time (like math in the early morning when they are still asleep); to accommodate student activities like ASB; etc., etc.

I know it can hurt, but please don't feel bad if a student wants to change. Focus on the ones you have in front of you, and forget the ones who leave. Don't fall into the comparison trap. You do you!


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Old 08-30-2019, 04:33 AM
 
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Not a fan of being able to switch to another section/teacher because you didn't get a good vibe or your friend isn't in the class. Students need to learn to work with all kinds of people because in the work place it won't be as easy to switch and your friend won't likely be at your job.

I get add/drop if there was a schedule screw up.

My kids both had some fabulous teachers and some crap ones. Only time they were removed was if the teacher was blatently picking on my child. Happened once. Probably should have been done 3 more times.
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I also
Old 08-30-2019, 04:37 PM
 
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Would not let my child switch because they didnít like the teacher or for other reasons. Our children need to learn to persevere and realize that they wonít like every teacher. Parents are plowing everything in their path to make it easy for them. Sorry, rant over.
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That's not right
Old 08-30-2019, 05:03 PM
 
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IMHO, your school's guidance department should not allow that. I've been a classroom teacher and a counselor, and frankly, I'm glad I now work at a school with a strict, "no teacher shopping" policy when it comes to schedule changes. There are times when students and parents give me the "hard sell" on why Junior would do better with so-and-so or why so-and-so is a bad fit, but too bad. We're good at supporting one another and I have no problem citing the policy and saying, "I am so confident in the abilities of each and every teacher in this building that I am confident Junior will get an excellent education this year. Learning to work with different types of people is a critical life lesson."

I've worked in schools such as you describe, and it's a problem. When parents and students feel they can play one staff member off another, it just sows the seeds of mistrust and division, and that's not healthy for a school culture.

I do this thing as a counselor where I act all excited and inspired when students bring me petty complaints about a teacher. I say something like, "Wow! That's amazing! Do you have any idea how well prepared for college you will be? You're lucky to have a teacher who cares enough about you to hold your feet to the fire!" A student will hand me a graded term paper with a grumpy expression on their face, and I'll glance at it and say, "Mmmmm. Not bad. Maybe a tad generous with the grade." Or a kid will say, "Do you think it's fair for a teacher to deduct a mark for EVERY single punctuation error?" And I'll say, "Sure. Why not? I might be inclined to take off more than that if the mistakes are persistent and you're making no effort to correct them, so I'd say a mark per error is more than fair. Why do you ask?" I say it in a deadpan that indicates polite curiosity as though I have no idea they're about to complain about their teacher.

School staff should support one another. I'm happy to talk to kids about how they are feeling. Or to discuss strategies for success that emphasize THEIR individual accountability for their progress (or lack thereof). But students and parents who abdicate their responsibilities and try to shift the blame to my colleagues are not getting my time or sympathy. If parents or students have a genuine, valid complaint (extremely rare), take it to administration.

I don't allow teacher swaps partly because it's policy, and partly because, philosophically, I have confidence in my colleagues and expect the students to learn to adjust.
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Old 08-30-2019, 06:30 PM
 
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Angelo, I think you are just wonderful...
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I've dealt with this for years
Old 08-31-2019, 10:44 AM
 
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No disrespect to anybody else, but kids usually want to drop my classes because I'm a tougher teacher who will make them do more. Kids often intentionally say that stuff around you just to get under your skin. It used to bother me too, but then I stopped letting what teenagers think get to me because they're only motivated by doing as little as possible. The real problem is that they're enabled by adults who just want to get them through.

The only thing that bothers me is the whole charade of a deadline" to switch classes. The reality is that in all my years of teaching, kids could switch classes for any frivolous reason they want, any time they want because adults don't want to deal with their parents. Having fake deadlines undermines the deadlines I try to have in my classes.



Last edited by Surly; 08-31-2019 at 09:05 PM..
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Old 08-31-2019, 12:49 PM
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