As a teacher I often have a worried feeling every time my students undergo a test. I was afraid that I didn’t teach them well and train them hard enough to pass the test. I was worried that when they failed, it reflected the quality of my teaching.
As a parent I always want my children to perform well in their tests. I want to be sure that my children are academically well. I want them to be successful as a student. I want their success to reflect that we have done anything we could do as parents to make them successful academically, that the endless hours of tutoring we committed to help our children at home really worked.
Well, imagine the feeling I had as both a teacher and a parent when my son’s teacher sent me a text message, requesting a meeting to talk about my son’s academic performance. If such meeting had been called two weeks ago, I would not have been worried sick. The meeting was called today, just a week before his school report is going to be distributed. That is not a good timing for meeting. Such meeting only means one thing: he fails his grades and has to repeat the year. As a teacher, I feel awful. By profession, my duty is to bring out my students’ potentials so that they can excel academically. I think I can consider myself a good teacher, as on many occasions my students performed really well in tests. But why couldn’t I bring the best out of my own son?
As a parent, I feel terrible. I thought I had helped him in his school work, making sure that he studied extra hours at home, making sure that he understood whatever he learnt at school. But why couldn’t I make him successful in his academic performance?
Double feeling of guilt is billowing in my chest. I can’t stand the shame of being a teacher and a parent who can’t help her own son in his academic abilities. Oh, yes, I want to beat myself for his academic failures. It is my fault, more than his, that he couldn’t do well in his school work. I should have helped him more. I should have tutored him more. I should have focused my attention more to him in the evenings when he struggled to understand his lessons. I should have. I could have.
It’s time to take the bitter medicine and face the reality. He has to stay behind and I have to face the fact that after all I’m not that good as a teacher and as a parent.