Convincing parents to get their child extra help when they are not meeting milestones.I am a UPK teacher and I am having a hard time convincing parents that their child is showing some obvious...

Convincing parents to get their child extra help when they are not meeting milestones.

I am a UPK teacher and I am having a hard time convincing parents that their child is showing some obvious delays.  I have a few parents this year who are not willing to allow extra evaluations when the child is not meeting milestones.  One parent sees the delays and asks my opinion but does not follow up.  She only gets frustrated with her child and makes excuses for her.  Does anyone have ideas on how to talk parents into having their child evaluated even though they label it as a preschool child with a disability.  The label does not follow them into Kindergarten at least in New York they are reevaluated if they still show delays once they enter Kindergarten. 

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amy-lepore's profile pic

amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted on

Be sure to offer parents an inexpensive or free program which will help their children make necessary achievments.  Remember that in this time of economic difficulty, some parents will not be willing to sacrifice or just can not find the means to help their children.  In addition, if the child comes from a family where education is not valued (no one has a high school diploma, much less any collega), then you are probably fighting a losing battle when you tell them it will cost extra money.

Have you checked with your supervisors?  What advice can they give you?  Is there any way you can apply for a grant which will have someone like Sylvan tutors come to your school once a week or so?

Just some thoughts...

linda-allen's profile pic

linda-allen | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted on

Have you considered that maybe the parents don't know how to give the help the child needs? You are an educated person. Are those parents?

What is UPK?

seelee51's profile pic

seelee51 | Elementary School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

As the director of my own preschool, I have this problem all the time and know how frustrating it can be.  Parents first response may be a defensive one out of denial.  One of the first things I preface is that while I have taught special needs students for years, I am NOT qualified to diagnose.  I emphasize that I may be wrong, but feel strongly about airing on the side of caution, especially since early intervention can be so beneficial if there IS a problem.  

I then proceed to share my observations with them.  If the question arises, "Why didn't you tell us sooner?", I explain that child development is a tricky thing.  There are times when children seem to be lagging and suddenly, they make a huge leap.  I also tell them that I try to be as sure as possible of my recommendation for testing, so anecdotal information and classroom observations by both the teachers and myself are crucial for me to make that determination. As the nursery school teacher responded (#5), I too share some of my experiences with my own children, one of who was classified, so they know that I understand, as I was in their shoes as well.

I then discuss areas of concern. It's sometimes difficult for parents to understand that although their child may be able to decode words, his/her receptive or expressive language may be delayed. All you can do is give your professional opinion & hope they act on it.

 

kimdauph's profile pic

kimdauph | Elementary School Teacher | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

UPK is Universal Pre-Kindergarten.  It is big in New York and the Governor would like to make it available to all who would like it. 

As far as helping the Mom, I had our social worker offer to help Mom with the process. She would go with her to the meetings and so on.  Mom just said that until her Doctor tells her there is a problem then she is okay.  However, then the mother gets easily frustrated with the child.  For example, she called her child a brat today because the girl was not getting ready to go home fast enough for her.  The girl was not potty-trained until she attended school this last fall, she has balance issues and is always getting hurt.  She is also still learning basic skills, like drinking from a cup without a lid or straw. 

The Doctor only sees the child once a year or if they are sick.  They may not know the child well enough to see that there is a problem. 

The problem I run into at this age level is that it is a parent's choice to send their child to school and if they want them evaluated.  I agree parent's should have rights and do know their child best.  However, during my education I did not learn how to talk to parents about sensitive topics and even how to convince them that their is help and other options. 

  I am a nursery school teacher in a private nursery school in New York state.  I have also had these issues with parents.  I have had some success though because I am a mother of four as well and have a child with ADHD.  If you can relate to the mother of the child in any way this usually helps.  What you need to remember is that no parent wants to accept that their child is not perfect.  I always try to attack the situation with understanding, having walked in the shoes of parents having a teacher tell them something is wrong.  Another thing that I have found is that parents always seem to run to the pediatrician and use that as their defense but the bottom line is that you are a trained educator who assesses the child's situation daily.  I usually make sure that I have a standards checklist all filled out on the child who needs further evaluation and I also explain that once the child turns four years old it is much harder to get the evaluation before Kindergarten.  This means lost time that the child could be receiving crucial services.  Ultimately it is the parent's decision about whether to evaluate or not and we just have to do our best for the child.

readingdiva's profile pic

readingdiva | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted on

UPK is Universal Pre-Kindergarten.  It is big in New York and the Governor would like to make it available to all who would like it. 

As far as helping the Mom, I had our social worker offer to help Mom with the process. She would go with her to the meetings and so on.  Mom just said that until her Doctor tells her there is a problem then she is okay.  However, then the mother gets easily frustrated with the child.  For example, she called her child a brat today because the girl was not getting ready to go home fast enough for her.  The girl was not potty-trained until she attended school this last fall, she has balance issues and is always getting hurt.  She is also still learning basic skills, like drinking from a cup without a lid or straw. 

The Doctor only sees the child once a year or if they are sick.  They may not know the child well enough to see that there is a problem. 

The problem I run into at this age level is that it is a parent's choice to send their child to school and if they want them evaluated.  I agree parent's should have rights and do know their child best.  However, during my education I did not learn how to talk to parents about sensitive topics and even how to convince them that their is help and other options. 

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