How do you respond to an angry parent?
You swipe across your phone’s email app one last time before bed and there it is: that disgruntled parent email (DPE) you could have waited a lifetime to see, or at least until after your morning coffee. Whether it’s a stream of consciousness rant or a carefully numbered list of grievances, no teacher likes to see the DPE land in their inbox.
Parents get upset, of course. You teach their kids every day, they are bound to have strong feelings about the job you do. The DPE is just part of the job. So how do you respond with tact and measured grace, without groveling?
This is the toughest year of every teacher’s career. But it’s also likely the toughest parenting year, too. If nothing else, relate to your student’s parents on those terms. Be friendly. Be brief. Be gently honest. And then quit checking your email before bed…