EducationPop Quiz

Pop Quiz – When Parents Attack

It’s the weekend, Pop Quizzers! To celebrate, I’m writing this post under the influence of sweet sweet root beer. I know that’s probably not too big a deal for many of you, but it’s pretty much entirely unavailable over here. My local supermarket just started stocking some “USA import” products and now I can finally enjoy the third-greatest soft drink in the world.


We had a parents’ consultation evening last night. A while ago I posted about how little direct contact Scottish teachers tend to have with pupils’ parents and so these events are really important. I quite enjoy them and they almost always run very smoothly.


Yesterday, however, things didn’t quite go to plan for another teacher. One of my colleagues found themselves face-to-face with an extremely aggressive parent. They were subjected to a full-blown finger-pointing spittle-screaming tirade, complete with personal insults and more. They were left understandably shaken and they still felt extremely upset today.


The school takes incidents like this very seriously and the parent in question was removed from the premises last night. They have also been called in for a meeting with the Head Teacher. I don’t want to go into too much more detail for obvious reasons, but suffice to say it was a highly unpleasant experience for my colleague.


Today I wanted to ask whether any of you have ever had a similar experience with aggressive parents (or students, if your students are older).


Have you even been faced with an aggressive parent? If so, how did you deal with the situation?


Does your establishment have a policy to deal with incidents like the one experienced by my colleague?


How would you have responded if you were in my colleague’s position?


The Pop Quiz is a question posed to you, the Scholars of Doubt. Look for it on Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons (ET).

Featured Image Credit: Livescience

Previous post

Required Readings, 5 December 2013

Next post

Required Readings, 8 December 2013



Alasdair is a high school English teacher in Scotland. He's a passionate skeptic and science fan, which is why he runs a discussion club for young skeptics in his school. He loves space and astronomy more than pretty much anything and is studying for a physics degree in his spare time in order to become qualified to teach science.

He lives with a cat made of distilled hatred and spikes.


  1. December 7, 2013 at 4:51 am —

    Not yet, thankfully.

    What drinks outrank root beer? Is one of them Irn-Bru?

  2. December 9, 2013 at 3:54 am —

    Irn-bru is indeed one of them. How stereotypical. The other is Dr. Pepper, sweet nectar of my life.

    • December 10, 2013 at 12:16 am —

      Who could blame you? It is delicious.

Leave a reply