This article was written by Andy McCall. Andy is in his 9th year teaching, and does everything to honor his little girl, Penelope, who passed last year. Check him out on his Blog or on Facebook: Penelope's Path.
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Most of the time, the kids aren’t the problem. The kids don’t even have a problem with the problem. It's the parents. Colleges need to start offering a class in undergrad on how to deal with these people because it's one of the most frustrating part of the job. New situations are always coming about, but these are 10 Types of Parents you're sure to deal with.
1. The Helicopters (a.k.a. The Hoverer or The Umbrella):
They just can’t let go. Usually only child parents that just want to make sure everything is so perfect. Little Bobby has never opened his car door or walked into the school alone. There’s a field trip? Guess who signed up to go “if needed”. There's a school event? Guess who is there keeping an eye on all the activities little Bobby is doing. You feel so bad for Bobby sometimes, but he can be a little Devil, so you sort of smile when Mommy wipes his face at the door in front of everyone.
2. The Ghosts:
You couldn’t tell me what they look like if my life depended on it. You’ve sent notes, emails, even tried to catch them in the car line. No luck. You really hope to get that 5 minutes of face time, but you never get it. It's always the one that you really need to talk to, but if they're anything like their spawn, it's probably better you aren’t in a room alone with them.
3. The Competitors:
Most of the time it isn’t about their kid, it's about how their kid did compared to everyone else. It's unbelievable how competitive they are when it comes to spelling tests and math facts. The kid walks around stressed to the max because if they don't ace that science test today and hit that home run at the t-ball game tonight, they're grounded. Their kid will eventually hate all things related to school and sports, but you can’t tell them that, because they're busy driving from one AAU practice to another, and throwing note cards at their 8-year-old.
4. The Hammers:
Strict rule-followers. If it's due on Tuesday, it's done by Monday. They write notes to you instead of the other way around. These "hammers" usually call their own parent/teacher meetings. They do mean well and want their kid to not be a vagrant, but I’m pretty sure they could loosen the ropes enough to slip a few extra fun-size snickers in, and it won’t be the end of the world.
5. The Nails:
Their kid runs all over them. You can tell they're trying, but with little ones screaming in the background during your phone call home, you know it isn’t going anywhere. Their kid is usually the one taking markers and screaming at playtime. You're just glad this is all you get. Hopefully, one day the coffee kicks in, and they stand up to their kid.
6. The Pinterests:
Monogrammed everything. Have you seen the newest braid style? Their little one has it. Homeroom parties are themed right down to the mummy Organic granola sticks and recycled handmade napkins, with everyone’s name bedazzled into them. I barely have time to make coffee in the morning, and their little one is handing me a happy Tuesday Streusel fresh out the oven, with Acai berry compote to dip it in. I don’t hate them. I don’t even envy them. I’m just trying to figure out how they do it!
7. The Great Ones:
Their kid isn’t perfect and they aren’t either. They work, they sign up to bring napkins or Oreo’s. I send a note home and it says, “taken care of”. They don’t want to know everything their student does, but they're still involved just the right amount. They might have slipped a bottle of wine into the bag at Christmas under the cookies you both know are going to the trash. Teachers pray for more parents like these.
8. The Judges:
Always asking questions. What is this? When is this? Why did they make this? What is the exact plan for this field trip? You know who they are. You almost want to give their kids straight As, just to avoid the headache. No matter what answer you give, they always give you that look of judgement. Lord forbid they see you in public in your pajama pants buying a carton of ice cream, because that look could kill.
9. The iParents:
I’ve never seen them not on their phone. I don’t have any questions on why their kid doesn’t listen or have the right stuff. They're on the phone with the engine revving when they drop them off. They're on their iPad handing their kid an iPad when they pick them up. I don’t think they’ve seen the sky in years. I don’t know what they do to be that important, but just as they tell probably their kids, I’ll “just google it.”
10. The All-Americans:
You can’t help but love them. Their kids are the ones you can send to the office and not worry they will run away. They're on the same lines of the Great Ones, but they're almost perfect. They're always happy because their life is great. You want to be them sometimes. You’ve never seen them not matching, but it isn’t creepy.
11. THOSE Parents:
No explanation needed. You know them. You avoid them. You're counting down the days you don’t have to fake smile at them anymore and they're someone else’s problem. Oh look, a note that they just self-diagnosed their kid based on the Netflix show they just watched. Great, here we go again.