My parent conferences are over, and they went extremely well. Everyone showed up except for one, and I think they were home with a sick kid. Almost everyone (including Little One’s mom) reported that their children love school so much they want to come even on weekends and when they are sick. I got all my forms filled out by the families, and managed to race through lots of handouts and topics, plus go through the children’s portfolios and talk about goals. I even remembered to tell every family that their children’s backpacks should be mostly empty, with no art, papers, school supplies, books, or toys hanging out inside.
But one conference gave me a stomachache. Through an interpreter, one mother came to tell me that a boy in my class has been bullying her boy, for weeks. The bully calls him an offensive word for homosexual, in their language, every day. I didn’t know the word, so I never noticed. That boy has also hurt her son a few times, and is just plain mean to him. Her son is very serious, very quiet, and very sensitive. I feel TERRIBLE.
The bully’s parents came in for their conference first, so I didn’t get to talk to them about it. We were so busy talking about all the other problems their boy is having, anyway, and his parents didn’t seem all that engaged…..
I went in search of an adult male in my building who speaks the boys’ language and can be scary. I found one I hadn’t thought of — a gay teacher who is quiet, funny, and gentle, and was chatting with the Princess when I went to ask her help finding someone to talk to my bully. The teacher was very offended by the word my bully has been using, and is in a way the perfect person to do it. He already bonded earlier this year with one of my little girls who was having separation anxiety, and now he is determined to talk to my victim, and build a reassuring relationship with him. He will talk to my bully on Monday morning, accompanied by our lead behavior person, and later he will also talk to my victim, to see how he is doing, and let him know he’s got someone to talk to.
Then the behavior team will call the bully’s parents to let them know what is going on.
I hope we are on the right track to turning things around, for both boys.