My worst parent - Lawyer mum was on my case

19th March 2010 at 00:00

It's a small world, or so they say. And after the experiences I had with my worst parent I couldn't agree more.

I came into teaching later than some. I had a career in the legal profession where I was something of a fish out of water and was frequently left gasping - not at the activities of my clients, but by my fellow lawyers who I found to be (with some noble and notable exceptions) a tad arrogant.

When I became a teacher, I was delighted to work alongside dedicated and talented professionals. I was in the right place at last and the hit I had taken in salary was more than compensated by the sense of social worth and personal commitment.

But I had not reckoned with the parent factor. In particular, one of my parents was none other than a former solicitor colleague who I had fallen out with. Clearly, this was payback as this former adversary (and highly adversarial) mother took every opportunity to query my classroom skills and judgment. Indeed, her poor child was probably cross-examined nightly as a witness to my professional negligence.

As a new and not too confident teacher this became very trying. Every homework comment triggered a note asking for more clarification - which itself was then contested. In legal terms, this was the behaviour of a serial and vexatious litigant. In layman's terms, this translates as nasty and vindictive.

I threw myself on the mercy of the headteacher and explained the situation. Thankfully, she sorted it, and stood up to the bully - an act which only served to remind me how lucky I was to be working alongside true professionals.

The writer is a primary school teacher in Surrey. Email your worst parent stories to Every one that is published earns #163;50 in MS vouchers.

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