No parent wants to hear bad news, so when the phone rings and it is the school, I think the natural thing for us to do is to worry about what news may be on the other end. But stressing about anything doesn’t do any good for anyone. In this contributed post are some tips to help you with how to respond when your child’s school calls that can help make the conversation a lot easier and help put a lot less strain on your emotional health, read on…
Every parent dreads receiving an incoming call from their child’s school. Let’s be honest; it’s rarely good news. At the very least, you’ll need to leave work to deliver their sports kit. In the worst case scenario, the school may be calling to tell you that your child is injured.
The moment the receptionist utters those words, you’ll likely see red. After all, shouldn’t children be safe at school? Straight away, you may swing into a blind panic and take it out on the person at the other end of the phone. In truth, though, you need to keep a cool head to ensure you approach this situation in the best way. The last thing you want is to make false accusations against your child’s wishes. Instead, do your best to stay calm for the duration of your school interaction. You can achieve just that by keeping these pointers in mind.
Avoid accusations until you know the facts
As soon as you hang up the phone, it’s easy to get caught up in thinking what might have happened. During the time it takes to find your car keys or book a cab, you’ll imagine 100 different scenarios. The more you think about these, the angrier you’re likely to get. And, guess what? When we’re mad, we don’t always function well. In fact, you may be so blind with rage that it takes double the time to find your keys. And, that means double the time before you reach your child. Instead, avoid even thinking about this until you arrive at school. At this stage, you don’t know what’s happened. Don’t stress yourself out and lengthen your journey on imagined horrors.
Assess the situation
Once you’ve arrived and seen your child, you can assess the situation. Make sure, to keep your stress levels in check here, too. Don’t barge in and shout at the teachers. Instead, sit down with your child and ask what happened. Then, assess who’s at fault. If the school is to blame, calmly consider the correct process after an injury. Flying off the handle at this stage will only harm you if matters go to court. Make sure you act in a professional manner. That way, there’s no chance the school can argue against their part in your child’s suffering.
Focus on your child’s needs
Perhaps the most important thing to remember is that you should focus on your child’s needs above all. This is the best incentive of all for not stressing out. Your child needs to see you strong, not overcome with stress. Instead of getting angry, then, you should focus on what your child needs. If they need to go to the hospital, take them there straight away. Even if they’re well enough to go home, staying at school while you demand meetings and explanations could cause further distress. Instead, take them home. Only consider how best to approach the issue once you know they’re safe and sound, and you have some distance yourself.
Phone calls from your child’s school are usually nothing to look forward to and getting that phone call can put you on the edge of your seat. I have had a few calls from the school because my children were sick and it seemed like the school call can have you feeling more worried than you should be.
No parent wants their child to get hurt or upset and having it happen while out of their eyesight can make the situation a lot tenser. All you have is the receptionist’s details of the account and you have to wait to get to the school to find out what has happened. So the second tip of avoiding accusations is very useful in this situation.
Sometimes when we are upset we can forget what the actual situation was about and in this case, it is our child. So trying not to let the news upset us so much that we forget about our child’s needs is important. This is also a great opportunity to teach your child how to appropriately deal with anger or stress.
Dealing with stressful situations concerning our children can be very difficult but our children can learn how to properly deal with these situations from us. Take a breath, assess the situation, and do what is right for your child and your family.
Have you had to deal with a phone call from your child’s school that was stressful? How did you deal with it? I would love to hear about your experiences below!