There are many wonderful parents out there whose children have been in my class. The wonderful parents come in all types; alas, so do the not-so-wonderful ones.
One kind of not-so-wonderful parent I encountered starting with my first year of teaching is the Parent Who Spanks. The child gets in trouble at school for hitting other children, and I call home to talk to a parent. When I was a young teacher I thought that of course it was my responsibility to let them parent(s) know what was happening at school. Then you find out the next day that the parent spanked the child to punish him for hitting. Or you find that out with horror from Mom herself (“when he gets home he’s going to get a whuppin’!”), and you suddenly wish you had never told her anything.
The logic of hitting your child to teach them to stop hitting escapes me. These parents probably have had few good role models for disciplining their children, and they probably have few skills to handle these situations. But still.
The next problem, of course, is that I cannot call this parent again when the child hits another, or I will feel responsible for that child getting whupped at home again. And I want nothing to do with anything or anyone who hurts a child.