May 1, 2018 4:14pm CST
This is an open letter to the teacher who called my child a monkey today. After drying his tears this evening, I have a LOT to say, but I'm going to keep it short and sweet. Dear Miss, I am assuming that you have a lot on your hands managing a full classroom of children from diverse homes and backgrounds. I am guessing that this must be difficult for you, but that you get by on most days. I know that in a classroom you must be neutral and that you cannot and should not favor any one child over another, so that you would treat my child just as you would any other. I appreciate your work, Miss, and the powerful role you play in helping to mold my son's mind and shape his outlook on life. And that is why I do NOT appreciate the fact that you called my child a monkey and then went on to urge him not to infect any of the other children. See, I get that you are trying to be snippy, Miss, or maybe you were flustered... but I want to make this abundantly clear. You DO NOT have the right to call my child that or any other derogatory name. See, in your classroom, my child may be one of many children... but in my home, my son is my world. And I do not want you messing with my world. Don't get in his head. Don't mess with his head. Don't mess up his head. It's 2018, Miss. And you have a very powerful job. In the classroom you create tomorrows, our tomorrows... Let's make that a good one. Let's make tomorrow a better one. I hope you have a better day tomorrow Miss. For I love classrooms, but I do so hate courtrooms.
6 people like this
• Manchester, England
To be honest, when I was a child, the term "cheeky monkey" was often used as a term of endearment to describe someone who was a little bit cheeky/naughty but in a likeable way. Maybe the teacher had no intention of upsetting your son but you are right to bring it to her attention so the matter can be discussed. Perhaps if she understands how much the remark upset him she'll not use it again. And maybe if she explains her intent to your son then he will realise that she didn't intend to upset him.
• Jacksonville, Florida
I'm sorry your little one was hurt. =( Teachers of all people should be sensitive to all of the children's feelings in their classroom. I call my own children little monkeys when they are climbing on things and being silly but they know the way I say it is meant to be funny and not hurt at all. Another reason I Home School-teachers can be bullies at times too...
• United States
@JolietJake I know. And my son is more boisterous than most, I concede. But I honestly don't think this is all it is. In fact, I think... 2018... my son's teacher should have been better than this. My son came home. He started to tell me the incident all laughing... and then his face fell and he broke into tears and I felt powerless because this is something that happened and I couldn't protect him from it.
She must have had her hands full that day or she was probably having a bad day. But a teacher should never do that to a child no matter how naughty a child is, they don't deserve to be called names. If there was a problem at school with your child, especially involving behaviour, she should have called your attention.
• United States
@Shellyann36 Thanks! We had a productive conversation The teacher was able to understand how such a slur, whether so intended or not, could be received and how it could hurt. She understood the importance of managing one's vocabulary in this diverse space we must all occupy and she apologized for yesterday's incident. In her defense, she did not mean it the way it was received... and I was able to see that as well. This conversation could have gone a completely different way if we hadn't both approached the topic with an intent to listen and to learn. The administration was, of course, involved by way of protocol... but I think we were all pleased with the outcome. I know I am. And we are all better educated for it. For my son, too. It was a teachable moment for him.
• United States
I have heard my son's version of it. I'm trying to get an audience with his teacher to hear her version of it and then I guess I can put together the context clearly. But as far as my son said, another child was playing around and the teacher caught him. My son laughed and the teacher sent him (my son) to the principal's office, followed him on his way there and called him a monkey.