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Teacher Sparks Debate After Refusing To 'Give Up Time' & Help Her Students Catch Up After Their Parents Took Them On An Unauthorized Vacation

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teacher helping student with her work

A teacher is once again proving how taxing it can be to work in the public school system.

Posting to the UK-based forum, Mumsnet, an educator revealed that she was asked to give up her free time to tutor a couple of students who had missed vital learning because they had gone away with their parents.

She refused to give up her own time to help two students catch up after their parents took them on a two-week vacation.

In the teacher's post, she explained that the end of the year was steadily approaching, and to prepare for the end of the term, she has been working extra hard.

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"Two kids from the same family but in different years disappear off for a two-week family holiday, which hasn’t been authorized," she wrote. She made it a point to acknowledge that she doesn't want to judge or shame the parents for that decision.

She pointed out that since the two students were taken out of school right at the end of the year, they each missed two weeks of vital learning and important assignments. Now that the students have come back to school, their parents are requesting that their teachers give up their time to help them catch up.

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"I’ve said no because I already have a s--t ton of end-of-year stuff to finish and I don’t have the time," she bluntly stated. Since the teacher refused to help out, the students' parents are accusing her of being "unreasonable" for not doing something that is included in her job description.

Teachers in the public school system are constantly asked to do the impossible, and are often met with harsh feedback from parents, who either don't care about their children's education or who care too much and aren't willing to reach compromises.

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On top of all of that, educators are often paid significantly less for the amount of work that they do.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average public teacher salary in 2021 was $65,090. This figure was lower than the 2021 average pay of all full-time, year-round workers, $75,203.

Teaching constantly involves extensive work both inside and outside the classroom. They spend hours planning lessons, grading assignments, providing individualized attention, and participating in professional development.

Despite this significant workload, teachers often face limited resources and support, which can add to their stress and workload.

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In the comments, people praised the teacher for her decision.

"Of course, you're not being unreasonable. I have been a teacher for 20 years and with the best will in the world, I have virtually no time to do anything extra. They're being completely unreasonable," one Mumsnet user pointed out.

Another user added, "This is the perfect example of feeling the consequences of your actions so no l wouldn’t assist. Their children didn’t need to go on holiday. If they can afford to go on holiday, then they can afford a tutor."

Photo: Studio Peace / Shutterstock

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"I’m not against people taking their kids out of school for in-term holidays, but they definitely can’t expect you to take on extra time to teach their kids what they’ve missed," a third user chimed in.

When it comes to teaching, parents can often be a huge obstacle that can come between their children and the education they need. Of course, not all parents contribute to teacher stress, and many parents are supportive and cooperative partners in their child's education.

While it is natural for parents to advocate for their child's best interests, it can become problematic if it is at the expense of the overall classroom or school community.

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.