Should I keep him in or take him out?

@toe_ster (771)
United States
August 23, 2007 11:29am CST
My son is in this program at his school that I guess is a really good program from what I have heard. He got into in kindergarden by luck of the draw i guess, because I heard from many parents that there is a waiting list to get in.It is a program of students and teachers from kindergarden through fifth grade. They are seperated into their own grade and class but do a lot of learning and lessons together. A kind of kids learning from kids kind of thing too. So basically he will stay with the same classroom of kids from kindergarden on up through fifth grade, just rotating teachers. I have not quite got the concept down no matter how many times I asked and had it explained to me. Basically the rundown was that the teachers started this program to sse if they could take one group of kids and take them as far along as they could. Taking out the struggles and time of learning new kids and their tempraments and work habits, and that beginning of the school year adjustment. They get the same group back every year and kind of pick uo where they left off. Well so far I think it is ok, but I have one little problem. There are about 8 boys in the class. All but my son and one other boy in the class are all sons of the PTA board. So they are pretty tight. They are always doing things together in and out of school and the boys moms are there at least 3 times a week if not every day. These boys came in as best friends. So my son is kind of the outsider with the other boy. And we had many conferences and notes and phone calls from the teacher urging and pushing us to make playdates with the other boys so my son canmake a friend in his own class. He has made friends outside friends in other classes but she wants him to make friends in his own. I understand since he will be with these boys for the rest of elementary school, but the teacher has also tried to get us to not befriend the other boy in the class whose mom is not on PTA. She said he is kind of a troublemker and loud one and he might be a bad influence. SO maybe this year will be better, but I fear a repeat of last school year. I do have the opportunity to pull him out and put him in the rest of the school but will I be losing out on a good opportunity? I have asked many parents and teachers at his school and it seems they are split down the middle too. Any suggestions?
4 people like this
11 responses
@mrsbrian (1951)
• United States
23 Aug 07
if it was my child I would take him out,why should a child be limited to the children he is around and can only be friends with? life dosnt work that way he needs to be well rounded and to learn to live with all types of children, which he would get by changing different class rooms every year.
2 people like this
@toe_ster (771)
• United States
23 Aug 07
A lot of parents in the program agree and often pull their kids out by third or fourth grade togeive them an opportunity to socialize with the rest of the school. My husband and I are torn. We have asked my son and he wants to stay in it. I think he likes the idea of already knowing what to expect. He already knows who is in his class and he already knows the teacher and what they will be doing. But I just fear for his social and emotional needs. I agree with you. He needs to meet more of the school.Life is not about knowing and grownig through life with the same kids.
1 person likes this
@carmelanirel (20979)
• United States
23 Aug 07
Hi toe_ster, Have you asked him about it? Are his grades good? If the child is not learning and unhappy, I would remove him. And since the teacher encouraged him to not make friends with the one boy, where would that leave that child? He is probably a troublemaker because the other boys have their group and he is angry about it. It doesn't seem worth the trouble..I would say remove your child and hopefully the mother of the "troublemaker" will also remove her child..
@toe_ster (771)
• United States
23 Aug 07
I always wondered the same thing about the other boy. He was a likeable funny sincere kid. My younger children liked him too. We invited him to my sons birthday and thought he was a good kid. Then was told by the teacher that he is a bad influence and talks too much and has problems in class. My sons grades are ok, it is just his behavior. He started the year off good and by the end of the year was struggling. She thought it was because we did something to him at home to cause him some kind of insecurity. I think it is her not us. He will have . a new teacher who he has worked with throughout last year and they are always around older kids. BUt I do feel how you do. Thank u for your input. It is really good to have some genuine feedback.
1 person likes this
@deebomb (15322)
• United States
24 Aug 07
I think I would have a real problem with the teacher attitude towards the other boy. The one she calls a trouble makes. It seems to me her attiitude is all wrong. It may be she just doesn't like him. She is discrminating toward him it seems becauuse his Mom's not PTA. These other boys are getting too clanish. They should all be encouraged to have friends out side of this group too. I'ed pull my son out. It just doesn't feel right about those boys.
1 person likes this
• Canada
24 Aug 07
I have never heard of this before and don't quite understand what it is all about either but don't agree with the teacher suggesting to you that your son should not hang out with this other student that he has befriended because he has problems . Just because a child has problems does not mean he is a bad child for your son to hang out with . What is this child's homelife like ? What are the reasons for his behavior problems , this is what they should be focussing on , not trying to take away friends . All children should be taught to get along with others that may be different from us and not told to get along only with a selective group of children or what their parents do . This could hinder your son in making some great friendships that could last him a lifetime . I realize this program is intended to benefit your child but you have to look at what it is also teaching your child . They are trying to say that some people deserve more in life because of who they are . You will have to make this decision between you and your family as it has to be something you are comfortable with but if you have any doubts about it then I would suggest pulling him . Best of luck in whatever you decide .
1 person likes this
@foxyfire33 (10009)
• United States
23 Aug 07
This sounds to me like a very strange and limiting social experiment. I'm all for giving kids the best chance possible academically but this doesn't seem to take their social development into consideration. They are limiting your son's friendship choices to about 6 boys AND deciding for him that the other boy is a bad influence. These are what 6 and 7 year old boys? Seems to me they normally DO get loud and boisterous at that age, doesn't mean they are bad seeds. And what kind of message is that sending anyway? That children should only be friends with children who are JUST like them and avoid any children that are perceived as "different"...that just seems wrong in so many ways. If it was my son, I would pull him out. I know what it's like to be stuck in a group in which I was the "outsider" as both a student and as a parent. Once those labels are made it's very difficult to lose them. But I can also say that because I know MY son and his personality would not handle that kind of situation. If your son can handle it all well and is happy then try to stick it out awhile longer.
1 person likes this
@wiccania (3360)
• United States
23 Aug 07
It's not up to the teacher to choose who your son should and should not be friends with. It's up to you and your son. I wonder of those other boys parents received notes about them taking the initiative and trying to include the two "outcast" boys in their play dates and activities. Was your son invited to any birthday parties for these boys, for example? If not, then perhaps those boys' parents aren't interested in their kids being friends with anyone whose parents aren't on the PTA board. It's a two way street. You and your son can try all you want to befriend these people, but if they don't respond, then there's not going to be a friendship. As for the other boy being loud and disruptive, perhaps that stems from not being able to make friends with the other boys.
1 person likes this
@twoey68 (13651)
• United States
24 Aug 07
Actually if it were my child, I'd put him in the regular part of the school. It would seem to me that by putting him in the special classes, he would be missing out on a more open, normal type of schooling and getting to interact with all types of kids. I'd also worry that he may get the idea that he is better, smarter or more special b/c he is in this special class. It would also bother me to have anyone tell me that my child needed to play with his own classmates and not the rest of the kids. But thats just me. I'd say do what you feel will give your child the best learning advantage but also allow him to pick his own path. Maybe if you talked to him and asked him how he liked the special class and what he wants to do...you might be surprised :) Good luck!! AT PEACE WITHIN
@pinnibabu (135)
24 Aug 07
such a confusion. I would surely take my child out because i dont want to set such limitations. There is more in this world and I am sure there would be plenty of such opportunities.
@vinzen (1022)
• India
24 Aug 07
Its totally upto you, as you are the better judge and his parent and you have to finally take this decison. The more people you ask the more confused you will get, as each one of us would give you our own different views, adding to your problem more in a way. But as you have asked i can suggest that there is no harm going for it, as its something different that maybe is taking place in the school. Agreed that the other boys are all friends and are PTA kids etc, but that would teach your chold to make a niche for himself and fight and make his own place too, rather than have everything laid out in a platter. Also, as they are all starting this new thing toegther, kids dont take much time to mingle and become friends, you are just feeling this , like we all normally do when we join a new school, its the same way, new friends, but am sure hed make friends with these kids too. If you feel that its a good chance and opportuniy that he must not miss, then go for it, if you feel that these other smaller worries and things your son wont be able to cope with, then leave it, though i feel they are small things and can be managed too. Go for it :)
@fianne (1059)
• United States
24 Aug 07
ask your son if he's happy or not. then you will know the best suggestion from him...
@cutepenguin (6457)
• Canada
24 Aug 07
I find it a bit odd that the teacher is encouraging you not to let your son be friends with the one other boy. That child would only get worse, especially if they are acting out because they have no friends or they feel left out. Oh well. I think, although I don't have kids, that I would pull my child out of this program. While familiarity is good, meeting new people and facing new challenges is an important part of school and life. And every kid has years where his friends are not in the same class as him, and they meet up at recess, but what if he doesn't ever make friends with these particular boys - he'll always feel like the odd one out.