Those of you who know me, know that I LOVE parent teacher conferences for a myriad of reasons. I love talking with parents about the progress their child is making, hearing kids talk about what makes them excited about school, and seeing kids interact with their families. Another thing I love is the occasional overshare of personal information.
Today I had several conversations with teachers about the unpredictability of conferences. One teacher mentioned that she was worried because she had just gotten off the phone with a father who needed to reschedule because he was too drunk to leave the house. I brought up the time a gentleman showed up looking for a certain student’s conference because he thought it would be the perfect time to serve one of the parents court papers. I also shared about the time I was cornered in my classroom by a father who prattled on for 45 minutes about how he was still suffering from the electroshock therapy he had received after returning from the Vietnam War. This story instantly reminded me of the mother who started her conference last year by saying, “I’m sure my son has probably told you, but I was recently struck by lightning.”
This afternoon, one of my conference story sessions ended abruptly when an associate, who is old enough to be the parent of every single staff member in our building, interjected.
Associate: “Well, you think that’s bad? I remember when I was working at the alternative high school and a teacher there had a terrible conference. Not only did the dad show up drunk, but he spent the whole time complaining about how his ex-wife had sex with a horse.”