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BOTD 10/22/13 "A Call From The Teacher" A Late Chat Production

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David M. Katz

A Late Chat Production

Your twelve-year-old son, Josh, enjoys his guitar and is very good at it.  He takes private lessons and is learning a lot.  He does have a music class at school but Josh finds it boring mainly because the teacher is robotic and uninteresting and truly cares little for music.

Today Josh skipped out of his music class about ten minutes early.  He was very bored but he also wanted to meet up with a friend who had an earlier lunch period to trade some gaming cards.  Josh just walked out of class and was unobserved by the teacher who was busy at her desk with paper work while the class was doing a busy work assignment. The teacher never knew Josh skipped out of her class early.

There is a parent's night assembly next week and Josh's teacher wants him to play his guitar at the assembly.  She calls to discuss the issue with you.  Josh answers the phone and his teacher identifies herself and says she needs to speak to one of his parents.  Josh assumes he is busted for skipping out of class and hands you the phone.  He is very scared and heads off to his room to console himself by strumming his guitar and performing for his stuffies.

JOSH - 12
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You finish the call and go to give Josh the good news.  You find he is now in tears.  As soon as you enter his room he bursts out with a confession and tells you he is sorry.

What happens next?

Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult.


I think this is a case where talking about it will be more productive than a spanking. Josh realizes that he made a mistake, and he does need a little re-enforcement about possible consequences, but he doesn't need a spanking. Talking about what the school could do to punish skipping, and how it shows disrespect to the teacher. And even if he doesn't like the teacher, he has to respect the teacher. Yes it isn't fair, but life often isn't fair.
I would let him know if it happens again, his bare bottom and the board of education will get to know each other, but he dodged the bullet this time.

John Boy

Well that is a guilty confession, I will do what I must to help that. Then I will tell him the true reason for the call.


Well you're obviously feeling quite guilty about it; perhaps a spanking will ease that conscience! Twisted Evil 

Good grief no!! The poor kid is tearing himself up for nothing so we'll discuss it openly and honestly and if he feels it needed I'm not above a few stingoors for the cause. I honestly think I need to find a different music class for him as he's obviously getting nothing out of this one. I'm sure he'll be pleased to have been asked to perform though.


Ditto Mahoover.


I think he expects some retribution so I am going to flip him straight over my knee before he has time to think and use my hand over his trousers. He probably expected worse but it will get the message over. We can then talk about it and I will tell him How proud I was that he owned up and also what his teacher really rang about and how proud he should feel about that. His teacher may be making little impression on him but he clearly has on her. I won't bust him to the school but I will throw the book at him if he does this again


Gosh, Josh! You would never have been able to walk out of a class back in my day.

Tomorrow you can go back to school and face the music by confessing to the teacher. You may quaver when you do so but unless she is feeling very crotchety, I doubt you are going to get anywhere near the top of the hit parade. Smile


Its unfortunate that the teacher has failed to earn Josh's respect; but the teacher's inadequacy is his problem.

Nevertheless Josh has done wrong.  He knows he has done wrong and he's had a fright.

I don't see any point in a lecture and I'm simply going to remind him he's lucky he didn't get caught because he knows very well that he would have been collecting the strap and losing those jeans if the call had been the one he feared.

Then we'll get on with the good news.


I don't even know where to start with this one.  

Josh at least deserves a good dose of the hairbrush, if not an actual switching.  What he did violated school rules and was flat out disrespectful.

On the other hand, what kind of student is so involved in paperwork that she doesn't even see a kid get up and walk out of class? And seriously, shouldn't you ASK a kid if he's interested in performing before the school before you get permission for him to do it?

Josh is getting a thorough ticking off about proper and improper ways of dealing with the problem, and about what he can expect if this ever happens again.

Now I need to think about having a talk with the principal about this teacher, but doing it in a way that doesn't throw Josh under the train.

(And I certainly do disagree with all of you who feel sorry for Josh - I didn't see a sign of him being upset until he thought he was caught - that's not guilt, it's fear of consequences).


Editor Extraordinaire
That the teacher was so engrossed in paperwork that she didn't notice a student walking out of class concerns me a lot. What is the deal with this class? I want to have a conference with this teacher and find out what is going on. If that conference is unsatisfactory, then I'll follow up with the principal.

As to Josh, I'll give him this one, but with the clear message that any further skipping of classes will meet with serious reprisals.



I think, once he calmed a bit, we will have a talk about his behaviour, school ethics and so on. If something else will follow depends on how he responses.

Nevertheless, a serious conference with the teacher / school is in order.


Jack wrote:
(And I certainly do disagree with all of you who feel sorry for Josh - I didn't see a sign of him being upset until he thought he was caught - that's not guilt, it's fear of consequences).
Oh, caught out! Razz   In R/L, I'd have to agree because that sounds like much of how I'D have responded at his age and you're absolutely right; it's not guilt I'm feeling but dire fear of the consequence of having been 'narked out' to the rents.  In all honesty, that fear kept me on the straight and narrow about 80% of the time.  The other 20% I had to rely on deviousness and smarts (and a healthy prayer life that no one would tell on me! Wink .

Stone Man

Jack wrote:
that's not guilt, it's fear of consequences.
I was about to get swept along with others and give Josh a pass until I read this. I'm going to make the punishment something between my boy and me and not going to rat him out to the school. But I do want to talk with the teacher and/or principal about how little Josh is getting from this particular course.

I also had thoughts about respecting the teacher, even when respect (shown by actually teaching to the needs of the students) is not shown in return.

The phrase "We salute the rank not the man" (Band of Brothers) comes to mind. The same would go with this teacher, IMO, and this is the approach I will be using with Josh when making it clear why his early departure from class is not acceptable nor is any disruption via boredom.

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