Another Parenting 101 principle: If you have a problem or an issue with your child’s teacher, go directly to the teacher as soon as possible.
You will be tempted to gossip about it with others. You will be tempted to bury it until it festers into anger or bitterness. You will be tempted to send a scathing email. You will be tempted to stew over it until it bursts out later. You will be tempted to do lots of things that are neither productive nor biblical.
The right response is to go to your child’s teacher with a gentle and gracious spirit and simply ask to talk about the issue. In Matthew 18 our Lord taught us that if someone sins against us, we ought to go to that person and tell him his fault. Talking about it with others, unless you are genuinely seeking counsel in dealing with the issue, is not an option. It requires humility in parents to go to a teacher with the right spirit. It also requires humility in a teacher to be willing to acknowledge his faults and rectify them. It takes wisdom, too, because sometimes the teacher has done nothing wrong or has unintentionally hurt feelings.
Regents teachers are not only willing to talk things over with you, they are eager to do so. Almost every week, I see or hear of faithful parents who come to a teacher and share their concern, and the issue is dealt with peacefully and effectively. We live in a community, with teachers partnering with parents to teach and train children for Christ. We are fellow believers — grown-ups — who are called to act in love.
Now, I know that these are your children, and it is easy to get emotional or upset when you perceive that a teacher is out of line. All the more reason to pray, get control, and go straight to the one who needs to work it out: the teacher.
What do you do if that meeting doesn’t yield results? That is the time, perhaps, to go to the headmaster and seek another hearing. Maybe there is more information that will clear things up, or maybe the headmaster can go to the teacher and get to the bottom of things and bring a resolution to the matter.
In any case, we should consider what St. Paul taught us in Galatians 5:14-15.
For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another!
We do well to practice these words daily — and heed Paul’s warning — as parents and teachers.