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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2007
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    15,564

    Default Spin-off from grades: Ever have yo' mamma call your college?

    The Chronicle of Higher Education (trade journal for that industry) has published a few articles that claim parents are calling up profs to run interference for their kids.

    Fer realz?

    A) Have you done that-- as parent or the kid?

    B) What do you think about it?

    Please help me understand because it was not part of my experience growing up. And I'm afraid that as a prof who got this first call, I could only ask "Fer realz?" and sound like an idiot before I revved up the (totally inappropriate) rant machine.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat



  2. #2
    Join Date
    May. 8, 2006
    Location
    Northern Indiana
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    765

    Default

    Oh hell no. I never had a parent get involved in ANYTHING school related from the time I was a sophomore in high school on. I'm an adult. I can handle it, especially in college. If you're in any sort of higher education, it should be expected that you don't need mommy or daddy to take care of things for you. I won't do it for my children either. Ridiculous.

    Though it does remind me of the lady who recently posted on my university's facebook wall.....talking about how great her son is and how "YOU'D THINK" a school like ours would be falling all over him and "HOW DARE THEY" not respond to his application in a timely fashion.
    Sweetie, we currently have 40,000+ students on campus, thousands applying and very large classes.....give them more than a couple weeks to process your precious spawn's application.
    To be loved by a horse should fill us with awe, for we hath not deserved it.



  3. #3
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    Dec. 4, 2010
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    305

    Default

    No way. I graduated in '11 and I cannot imagine having a parent contact my professors, nor did I know anyone whose parents did so. I went to a small college where it was (and is) commonplace for many professors to maintain personal relationships with students, and students were treated and expected to act like adults, not children. Anything regarding coursework, grades or the like is between a professor and their student, not the student's parents. If either party needs outside assistance, they should be approaching a dean, a department head, an advisor, etc- not a parent.

    The only instance in which my parents had any contact with my school (after my registration as a freshman) was with financial services and once with the Dean's office when I had to take a short leave due to a serious medical issue. The administration preferred to deal with parents in that type of situation, and in any case, I was so ill that I was in no shape to be working out administrative details. Once I was well enough to do so, I worked out the rest with my advisors and professors.



  4. #4
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    Nov. 13, 2005
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    between the mountains and the sea, North Carolina
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    2,936

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    If my mom had called my university, 1) good luck getting through to anyone who knew me, 2) they would have laughed in her face and refused to release anything relevant regarding my grades or records to her.
    "Choose to chance the rapids, and dare to dance the tides" - Garth Brooks
    "With your permission, dear, I'll take my fences one at a time" - Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey



  5. #5
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    Jan. 3, 2009
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    On the buckle
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    958

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    Absolutely not. I have a junior in HS and a junior in college, and they both take care of things for themselves. I've heard about parents like this, but I've never met any. Big mistake in my book!
    Mon Ogon (Mojo), black/bay 16 H TB Gelding


    1 members found this post helpful.

  6. #6
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    Aug. 17, 2006
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    ONTARIO CANADA
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    1,502

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    The only way the uni will accept my parents calls if its a urgent or emergency, and only to whomever i list on my profile
    Beyond the Ring-para dressage, training, coaching
    www.facebook.com/btrparadressage

    Proud Team Four Star Minion! Renegade for Life!


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  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar. 15, 2007
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    (throw dart at map) NC!
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    5,323

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    Quote Originally Posted by mvp View Post
    The Chronicle of Higher Education (trade journal for that industry) has published a few articles that claim parents are calling up profs to run interference for their kids.

    Fer realz?

    A) Have you done that-- as parent or the kid?

    B) What do you think about it?

    Please help me understand because it was not part of my experience growing up. And I'm afraid that as a prof who got this first call, I could only ask "Fer realz?" and sound like an idiot before I revved up the (totally inappropriate) rant machine.
    Yes, this happened in my lab. An undergrad bound for medical school was working on a project and he didn't complete the written part of his project in the semester he was supposed to receive credit in. We gave him an "incomplete" until he finished the written part in the next semester. His dad called to question this move and be sure that a grade would eventually be granted.

    What do I think? As an adult, the student should handle these situations on his/her own. The expectations are clear: follow them or don't, but don't expect a good grade or reccomendation if you don't fulfill the expectations. We were surprised and "aghasted" that the father would intervene in his son's incomplete grade.
    Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 3, 2012
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    Twin Cities
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    2,319

    Default

    had one of these. It was for a 1000 level bio course.

    One of the reasons I like teaching at a community college is that most of my students are not traditional college age. This entire incident reminded me, AGAIN, why I have that preference. If I had a class of only teenagers I would go nuts.

    Anyway, here is the story:

    morning of day one:
    Second week of classes & I get a bunch of psycho calls & emails all in the same period of 3 hours from nutjob mother.

    by law, I can't even confirm if someone is taking my class. I did not take her calls, emailed her back & referred her to the dean.

    Student had missed entire first two weeks of class & had been dropped from the roster. Mom finds out (student had been dropped from all of her other classes for same reason). Student apparently is brought in by mother & signs a waiver to allow mother (and grandmother, btw) in on her records, etc. She also harasses admin into letting kid back into all of her classes.

    afternoon day one:
    more phone calls & emails. They are so strange; go back and forth btn polite & angry, clearly woman has serious issues.

    I email re-enrolled kid the syllabus & tell her to look at course materials that she missed. I also ask student to let me know that she rec'd my email & that the syllabus came through ok, also to contact me if she had any questions about syllabus or course policies. Student emailed back that she got my email, syllabus was good, she was fine. Neither of us mentioned mother or related.

    Day two:
    still am getting calls & emails from nutter mom.
    I still refuse to discuss anything (didn't take her calls & avoided my office) with mom b/c 1) she was clearly a whacko & 2) wtf? its pretty clear why your kid is failing b/c she can't wipe her own a** without you checking it.

    last nutter email from mom says "Suzie Q will be in class tomorrow with her GRANDMOTHER [in caps, like I was supposed to be scared/impressed?]. Grandmother will require information about assignments, due dates, exam dates, grading system, bla bla bla" Basically, everything that is on the syllabus.

    day three:
    Grandma comes to class (cuts in line ahead of actual students waiting to talk to me) & states who she is. I tell her course policies, etc are given on the syllabus, which is given to enrolled students. One of the college policies (on the syllabus) is that only registered students are allowed to be in the class room.

    She is not an enrolled student, so she has to leave.

    bye bye grandma.

    Suzie Q attended that day & was never seen again. If I was that kid I would work like crazy to get school done w. early so that I could get out of that household ASAP. Good grief.

    I might add that some of the mother's rantings were about how her daughter wouldn't be able to achieve her dream of becoming a social worker. I know three ppl that need a social worker...

    We knew an MD (so he had def. been thru school & knew how it works) that didn't understand why he shouldn't be able to tell his son's college English teacher to let failing son do extra credit, since dad paid the bill. This was in 1989. So it isn't all new.



  9. #9
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    Jul. 31, 2007
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    Brought her grandmother to your class?

    You win.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat


    1 members found this post helpful.

  10. #10
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    Dec. 7, 2008
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    257

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    My mother worked at my college (in the administration, not as a professor). My mother was not happy with my first semester course load (she thought I had too many writing intensive courses) so she took it upon herself to question my adviser about it during a meeting they were having on an unrelated topic. His reply was something along the lines of "Jesus, you're not going to become one of those helicopter parents, are you?"

    Well, I guess that got her attention, and after that she TOTALLY stayed out of my life at school. Which was a good thing. I really don't think the professors cared that I was a daughter of a school employee, and my mom and I only saw each other when we wanted to grab lunch or something.

    And for the record, I was NOT overwhelmed with writing courses my first semester, thank you very much!



  11. #11
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    Jan. 26, 2010
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    6,379

    Default

    How about mom calling work?
    http://www.npr.org/2012/02/06/146464...-the-workplace

    It just keeps going.



  12. #12
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    Jul. 3, 2012
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Beentheredonethat View Post
    How about mom calling work?
    http://www.npr.org/2012/02/06/146464...-the-workplace

    It just keeps going.
    Could you imagine???



  13. #13
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    Sep. 23, 2006
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    892

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mvp View Post
    Brought her grandmother to your class?

    You win.
    Sounds more like grandma brought her to class!



  14. #14
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    Oct. 28, 2007
    Location
    NY
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    4,517

    Default

    Firmly in middle age, I'd happily take my family going to bat for me. While it may drive you nuts in this setting (college), later on I am grateful I have family that I can count on. I'm sick with a high fever and glad my sister and Mom are here to monitor me and take me to the Dr if this fever doesn't break.



  15. #15
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    Aug. 2, 2004
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    Whidbey Is, Wash.
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    Noooooooooooo!! *horror*
    COTH's official mini-donk enabler

    "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl



  16. #16
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    Aug. 22, 2001
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    Almost Aiken
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    2,783

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Chall View Post
    Firmly in middle age, I'd happily take my family going to bat for me. While it may drive you nuts in this setting (college), later on I am grateful I have family that I can count on. I'm sick with a high fever and glad my sister and Mom are here to monitor me and take me to the Dr if this fever doesn't break.
    I'm sorry you're sick, and it IS wonderful to know you have people who will take care of you.

    The difference is, when you're really sick you **Can't** take care of yourself, and you need help - it's physical, not a learning and effort thing. Kids in college screwing up and then expecting Mama bear to come to the rescue and ward off the consequences is another kettle o' fish, and a stinking one at that. Parents can't lead their kids around by the hand forever - it's not fair to the soon-to-be 50 yo kid, and it's not fair to the rest of the people that undeveloped person has to work with.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  17. #17
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    Jan. 26, 2006
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    Fort Worth, Texas
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    Quote Originally Posted by saje View Post
    I'm sorry you're sick, and it IS wonderful to know you have people who will take care of you.

    The difference is, when you're really sick you **Can't** take care of yourself, and you need help - it's physical, not a learning and effort thing. Kids in college screwing up and then expecting Mama bear to come to the rescue and ward off the consequences is another kettle o' fish, and a stinking one at that. Parents can't lead their kids around by the hand forever - it's not fair to the soon-to-be 50 yo kid, and it's not fair to the rest of the people that undeveloped person has to work with.
    no, it appears eveything is working as it should. We are training a generation that the government will be their mother.


    6 members found this post helpful.

  18. #18
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    Feb. 4, 2005
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    San Antonio, TX, or thereabouts
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    691

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    Dude, are you kidding?? I intercepted (and shredded!!) my first college semester "report card" that was mailed home (not terribly Successful, shall we say, between Calc/Physics/Chem, mixed with copious amounts of freedom and alcohol.) Now this was way back in the day, before such things were available electronically. My father to this day has no idea just how bad it was -- not that he cared, he trusted me to do my job, which was college, and I got things figured out Semester 2 and following. Getting my act together was its own life lesson, as was transitioning from a little high school to a tough university full of super-smart people. Graduated with maybe a 3.7 average?

    It's a shame that the helicopter parents can't learn to trust their own kids.
    "And now," cried Max, "let the wild rumpus start!"


    1 members found this post helpful.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May. 25, 2011
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    NYC
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    17

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    I have to admit...my mother tried to do this once. I had been diving on a Sunday morning, burst my eardrum, and subsequently spent most of Sunday afternoon in the ER. That evening, over dinner, mother dearest says, "I'll call [boss] for you in the morning to explain why you won't be in" My reaction? "What do you mean I won't be in? I'm driving back to the city tonight, will be at work tomorrow, and even if I weren't, it would definitely not be you calling her!" She's not usually a helicopter parent, so I'm not sure where that even came from. Just...not. Not going to happen!


    2 members found this post helpful.

  20. #20
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    Apr. 28, 2008
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    I teach at a law school and recently heard that an acquaintance at a law firm had a parent call after a junior associate received a bad review. This "kid" was a PRACTICING LAWYER, not an intern! Shocking.

    Parents who do this in the workplace should know that you have just tanked your kid's career, as no one is going to take him or her seriously. They'll have to change jobs to be respected (and that's if the story doesn't leak out which this stuff inevitably does). Cut the umbilical cord already.



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