Ashley is a loving mom and wife who also happens to work full time as a librarian. Most importantly, she puts God before everything.
Failure or Future
Being told that you need to make a decision to hold your child back and fail them for a grade can make you and your child feel like a failure. Let's learn to redirect the word failure into the word future.
My Sweet Baby
"I am going to need her to retain this year and repeat the first grade."
This sentence broke me. I cried right in front of a first grade teacher. I honestly didn't know what to do. I don't remember much after that. I just remember feeling like I failed that sweet little girl that I've been through everything with for the last seven years. What am I going to do? How am I going to tell her? Is she going to get picked on or made fun of? These are just a few of the many thoughts I had running through my head for the four hours and twenty-five minutes that I had to wait between the parent-teacher conference and the time I picked her up.
I decided to do the only two things that I knew to do in that moment. I prayed and called my mama. Between God and I talking, and the phone call with my mother, I came to the realization that this isn't about failure. This moment is about the future. More specifically, my daughter's future. If she wanted to have a better future, she needed to fail and guess what? THAT IS OKAY!
We all fail at different things in life. Some fail at school. Some fail at sports. Some fail at life (and the good Lord knows I do). Failure is the first step to success in the future. Did she walk the first time she tried? No. Did she ride a bicycle the first time she got onto it? No. And did she read and write everything the first time she picked up a workbook? NO!!
My sweet baby watched her older sister get all of her awards at awards day with no tears and we were proud of both of them. She said goodbye to all of her friends and didn't tell a soul that she wouldn't really see them again. We transferred her to a different school (for other reasons and I am sure I will write about that one day) and she has been perfectly fine with getting to go to first grade again for more practice.
Retention, no matter what grade, is not about a failure, it is about future. If your child is going through this same problem, my advice is to ensure them of just that.
© 2022 Ashley Toole