I am putting this in writing for two reasons, first I need to get it off my (rather generous!) chest! Writing is supposed to be therapeutic. Second, I am making a sociological statement on the declining social fabric that is happening all to quickly here in France (it's just my opinion and is not based on any scientific research, just non-empirical observation!).
I am not sure whether I have mentioned it before but, in an effort to supplement my meagre income, I work as a teacher, teaching English as a foreign language. With my private one on one clients it is a dream and the most rewarding thing ever. With the primary school children I teach every Friday afternoon it is a nightmare!!!
Last Friday a particularly odious little boy decided to ruin the class for everyone else and I asked him to write out the words "I must not play around in class" in English ten times. He was told what the words meant and I asked him to take it home to have his parents sign it, thus drawing his appalling behaviour to their attention. Now, if that had been my child, I would have been mortified, I do not see my children as little deities who can do no wrong. However, here in France, there is a new breed of parent, the Snowflake parent.
The "snowflake parent" is part of the social justice movement, except in France they have little Napoleonic syndrome too. Their little darlings are just "expressing themselves". NO. THEY. ARE. NOT. They are disrupting the other children in the class and preventing them from learning a language that could expand their horizons.
The particular "snowflake parent" of this child felt that it was acceptable, not to excuse his son for his parlous behaviour, but to write on the bottom of the written punishment that the "course was not an actual lesson but a non-obligatory peri-scolastic activity". The written punishment this particular child received was not his first that day and the other staff member was also taken to task for reprimanding the "golden child" in such a fashion. This parent was recently elected as a "Conseiller d'Ecole" (effectively a "governor") so is now so full of his own perceived importance he feels compelled to criticise the disciplining of his child instead of dealing with the child's behaviour. But then what did I expect from a family where the mother can criticise me for riding my bike, without lights, at dusk on a little used country lane, in order to get home because a sodding school meeting has taken two hours to dissect problems that could have easily been resolved in half an hour! Yet her own husband (he of governor status) can roll up outside school on his Ducati motor bike to collect his (then) five year old son (who was (and still is) well below the 25 percentile on the height chart) to ride pillion on the back of said Ducati with nothing but a BICYCLE HELMET to protect the precious one's head!!
I have had it!!! These ridiculous, self-important mini Napoleons with snowflake tendencies are going to be the death of France.