A first grade class at Ridgecrest Elementary in Cottonwood Heights, Utah, (and scads of other schools around the country, too, if the 1,994 downloads are any indication) made a Mother's Day “gift” to take home. Was it a sentimental card? A loving poem? Perhaps the impression of the child's hand forever memorialized in plaster of paris? No.

Public School Fail: Mother's Day Report Card

Some teacher (or in this case it may have been Principal Teri Mattson) thought it was a grand idea to have six-year-olds rate their moms on personal behaviors. The “report card” reveals how well “the mom” lives up to expectations! Kids get to rate (with smiling, neutral, or frowning faces) their moms on these items: 

  1. The mom cares for her children.
  2. The mom cooks healthy meals for her children.
  3. The mom has an organized bedroom.
  4. The mom takes time to enjoy her hobbies, such as reading.
  5. The mom works hard to make money for her family.
  6. The mom is funny and makes her children laugh.
  7. The mom takes care of herself by getting her hair done and taking bubble baths.
  8. The mom is a safe driver and does not get distracted when driving.

Inspire Me, ASAP!—the username of a woman who offers items on Teachers Pay Teachers—created this worksheet. It is apparently receiving lots of positive feedback (and smiling faces!) with comments like:

  • The moms will love these!
  • How fun is this?! Can't wait to have my kiddos make this!
  • Super adorable!
  • Adorable idea. I can't wait to see their answers.

I showed the worksheet to Sam without comment or background. (If you know Sam, he is not one given to emotional displays.) His mouth dropped open and he audibly gasped. “Wow. That is subversive!” No kidding. And, yes, the teachers “can't wait to see their answers.”

Now the questions are:

  1. How many parents are going to speak up about this?
  2. How could teachers/administrators be this clueless?

Whenever things like this happen, I see a ton of private griping and moaning and negative social media commentary. Few parents, however, are willing to push back. In a nutshell, parents are afraid of school employees. These taxpayer funded teachers and administrators hold so much power (grades, influence, activities, resources) that parents vehemently object in private while smiling and nodding in public.

They work for us, people. They must be held accountable.

Giving such a worksheet is not just invasive and stupid. In Utah, it's illegal.

Title 53A Chapter 13 Part 3 Section 302

Except as provided in Subsection (7), Section 53A-11a-203, and Section 53A-15-1301, policies adopted by a school district or charter school under Section 53A-13-301 shall include prohibitions on the administration to a student of any psychological or psychiatric examination, test, or treatment, or any survey, analysis, or evaluation without the prior written consent of the student's parent or legal guardian, in which the purpose or evident intended effect is to cause the student to reveal information, whether the information is personally identifiable or not, concerning the student's or any family member's:…

(e) critical appraisals of individuals with whom the student or family member has close family relationships

Teacher Margaret L. has provided us with a Teacher's End-of-the-school Year Report Card, bless her heart. This one is actually genius!

Thank you, Margaret!