Posts Tagged ‘Social Work’

Should Teachers be Able to Tell People they Are Bad Parents?

January 23, 2014


Ofsted chief inspector Sir Michael Wilshaw wants teachers to feel free to tell parents they don’t think are doing a good job that they are ‘bad parents‘.

This is a most preposterous opinion and one that indicates he might not be the right person for the position.

Parenting is a very difficult job, as every child is different and no single strategy works for every child. Some require firmness, others thrive with a more calm approach, some need to be motivated, others need to be shown how to relax. There is no course or degree that parents are forced to attend prior to having a baby. Parents start as rank amateurs and learn on the job. Sometimes they get on top of things, sometimes they struggle. This is to be expected. If every adult waited until they had all the answers before embarking on parenthood the birth rate would plummet.

What better profession is there for understanding the fragility of rearing children as the teaching profession? Up to 30 children in the classroom, some with special needs, some high achievers with a thirst for greater challenges, some with aggression, others who daydream and then there are those that lose every book and pencil they’ve ever been given. We know how hard it is to nurture children, so why would we pass judgement on others?

The ideal teacher doesn’t criticise parents, but rather, works with them. The best outcomes occur when teachers and parents join forces in improving outcomes for their children.

Sure, we have all encountered parents with attitudes and methods which we do not approve of. We might even tactfully suggest they take a different approach. But how is name calling going to change the parents in question? How is mud slinging going to assist the child?

Click on the link to read Loving Parents Are Allowed to Take Some Time Out

Click on the link to read How Life Changes When You Become a Parent (Video)

Click on the link to read Have Our Children Stopped Dreaming?

Click on the link to read How to Spend Time With Your Kids When You Have No Time

Click on the link to read The Meaning of Being a Father (Video)

Click on the link to read 24 Signs You Are a Mother


Children To Be Taken Away From Parents Because of Their Weight

September 5, 2011

There is no doubt that social workers are unheralded and deserve much credit for the work that they do.  But having said that, I can’t hide my displeasure at their willingness to break up families in the name of raising thinner kids.

It bothers me that people think they know what is best for someone elses children.  It disturbs me that people can justify taking children from their flawed but loving parents and subject them to foster homes and estrangement from their flesh and blood all in the name of helping them to lose weight.

What about what the children want?  Has it ever occurred to them that some children are prepared to deal with the consequences of being severely overweight if it means they can remain with their parents?  Since when did physically healthy foster kids have it much better than obese kids enjoying the closeness of their parents and siblings?

And don’t tell me that parents that raise obese kids are ‘cruel’.  Yes, they have made poor parental decisions and yes their poor decisions may have all kinds of serious consequences for their kids.  But parenting, like weight loss, is not an easy job.  It is unfair to taint parents as ‘cruel’ and ‘unfit to parent’ just because they are not succeeding in breaking bad habits.  No parents wants to see their child suffer.  Some just need a lot more support than others to break bad habits.

Four obese children are on the brink of being permanently removed from their family by social workers after their parents failed to bring their weight under control.

In the first case of its kind, their mother and father now face what they call the ‘unbearable’ likelihood of never seeing them again.

Their three daughters, aged 11, seven and one, and five-year-old son, will either be ‘fostered without contact’ or adopted.

Either way, the family’s only hope of being reunited will be if the children attempt to track down their parents when they become adults.

In an emotional interview, the 42-year-old mother said: ‘We might not be the perfect parents, but we love our children with all our hearts. To face a future where we will never see them again is unbearable.

‘They picked on us because of our size to start with and they just haven’t let go, despite the fact we’ve done everything to lose weight and meet their demands. We’re going to fight this to the bitter end. It feels like even prisoners have more human rights than we do.’

The bullying and stand over tactics by the social workers and courts were deplorable.  Making them send their kids to dance and sport lessons is not sensible at all.  Why wouldn’t the courts give the children a say about whether or not they wanted to go to dance and football?  Ask a young girl suffering from obesity whether or not she would take up dancing, she would invariably say, “Over my dead body.”  Clocking in and out to satisfy court imposed curfews and having social workers stand in corners taking notes at dinnertime just added to the lunacy.

Society is too harsh on parents.  Parenting is a difficult job.  Instead of judging or punishing parents for bad choices, would it be too much trouble to offer real support and encouragement?  Has this couple ever once been offered free appointments with dieticians or councillors?
Soon we are going to get to the stage where it is socially acceptable to classify any parent with even a slightly overweight child as a reckless and sub-standard parent.

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