Thought Catalog

13 Teachers Reveal Their Most Ridiculous Parent-Teacher Conference Experiences

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Twenty20, nikmock
Twenty20, nickmock

1. “There’s a mother sitting in the chair just outside my classroom door. As I finish one conference, I step out and extend my hand for her to shake. She completely ignores it and pushes past me into the room. Then she proceeds to stand and tell me that her son ‘Doesn’t do B-level work’ and I should ‘Perhaps consider an occupation in a better-suited field.’”

– Adam, 45

beetlejuice

2. “In the middle of a conference, this dad starts talking about the newly-implemented Standards Based Grading system at the school. He goes, ‘Yeah, I heard there was a couple meetings and a big uproar about it…But it’s just grades. Who cares? Get over it.’”

– James, 55

beetlejuice

3. “One of my first conferences as a student teacher, this parent introduces herself to my cooperating teacher and I, then turns to me and says, ‘Now how long are you here for? Because I have to be honest, the kids don’t really like you.’”

– Rachael, 23

beetlejuice

4. “We’re having this conference, and in the middle of me telling Mom and Dad Audrey’s last quiz score, Dad burps very loudly and totally acts like it didn’t happen, as did the rest of the family.”

– Jamie, 29

beetlejuice

5. “Don’t ask me how the conversation turned to superheroes, but all of a sudden this dad pulls down his shirt collar and goes, ‘Hey, check out my cool superman tat!’ Umm…okay, cool? I wasn’t really sure how to respond.”

– Isabel, 27

beetlejuice

6. “So I’m sitting there, and Johnny’s parents are telling me that I must not know what I’m talking about since Johnny’s always been a straight A student and doesn’t struggle with math. I smile, nod, and tell them that Johnny is a great student, but he struggled on our last test. Their classic angry-parent response: ‘Test? What test?’”

– Elizabeth, 33

beetlejuice

7. “I am in the middle of a short presentation to about thirty or so parents on Curriculum Night. I’m talking about Google Classroom, which my science course uses for in and out of school activities and homework. This father interrupts me and goes, ‘Do you really expect Cam to finish all that homework? He has football practice every night! I don’t think you teachers understand that students have lives outside of school.’”

– David, 40

beetlejuice

8. “One of my worst conference memories? This student wanders over to my desk while I’m explaining something to his parents. He looks at this ‘Super Teacher’ cartoon I have posted on the wall above my computer. Student: ‘Why do you have that posted on your desk?’ Me: ‘Because it looks like me!’ (We have identical blonde hair and it’s an inside joke between teachers.) Student: ‘But you don’t really think you’re that skinny…do you?’ Parent: *Snorts.* Says nothing.”

– Jen, 41

beetlejuice

9. “I’m trying to tell a couple that there have been several incidences where their daughter has been caught stealing from other sixth graders. Mom, with hands on her hips says, ‘I really don’t care what you have to say about this. It’s your job to teach these kids right from wrong. Not mine.’”

– April, 32

beetlejuice

10. “I’m explaining the syllabus to a group of six or seven parents. All of a sudden this father laughs obnoxiously and says, ‘You expect my kid to write a two page paper? He’s in eighth grade!’”

– Matt, 38

beetlejuice

11. “It’s my second conference of the year. A couple walks in, unannounced, and the mother goes, ‘Sam tells me you don’t do that good of a job updating the grade book. Care to comment?’”

– Rebeccah, 26

beetlejuice

12. “My most annoying conference was when this Dad’s phone is going off. I mean, it keeps going off. Probably five times. And every time he picks it up, wipes the screen, fiddles with it for a moment, and leaves the volume on loud.”

– Angie, 29

beetlejuice

13. “My favorite conference memory? This dialogue between a parent and child. Parent (to me/out loud): ‘Wait! You expect my kid to learn that? That’s way too hard! I can’t believe that the school expects them to know that!’ Parent (to child): ‘Do you even understand what is going on in school? Student: ‘Yes, Mom. Apparently I am way smarter than you are!’”

– Kyle, 56 TC mark

Marisa Donnelly

Marisa is a writer, poet, & producer. She is the author of Somewhere On A Highway, a poetry collection on self-discovery, growth, love, loss and the challenges of becoming.

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—Lee Crutchley, Author of “How To Be Happy, Or At Least Less Sad”

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