Going to School…With Your Parents?

There are pros and cons when it comes to seeing your parent in the halls

Erin Hogge, Managing Editor

photo from Grace Small
Sophomore Grace Small poses with her mother.

Imagine walking down the hallway and passing your mom or dad. For some students at Kettle Run, this is an everyday occurrence.

There are things that students like and dislike about having one of their parents in the same school as them all day. Staff members whose children attend Kettle Run are well known. Senior Tre Warner, son of Principal Warner, does not mind the fact that he is the principal’s son.

“For the most part, he stays out of my way,” said Warner. “And I stay out of his.” Warner sees both benefits and drawbacks to going to school with his father. “One of the benefits would be getting free stuff every now and then,” said Warner. “But the worst thing would probably be feeling like people don’t really trust me because my dad’s the principal.”

Principal Warner, like most parents, likes to know where his son is throughout the day. As the principal of his son’s school, he can do just that, even if his son does not like it.

In an email, Warner wrote, “I think in the beginning it was really tough for him and we’ve talked a little about it over the years. I honestly believe he has come to be okay with it and on some level enjoy having me as his principal.”

Though her father does not work in the school anymore, Junior Katie MacMahon found that there were more pros than cons when it came to having her dad in the building.

“It was nice because I could always put my stuff in his room rather than in my locker he could help me with work whenever I needed it,” said MacMahon. “I always learned about stuff happening in the school before anyone else did and it was fun because we could talk about things during the day because he knew everyone. It was nice going into classes on the first day because teachers already knew who I was because of him. Also, my lunches were always awesome because sometimes he would order food for me.”

There are countless people across the United States that are completely opposed to the idea of having a teacher instruct their own child. Some parents and school board members in the nation have gone as far as trying to block children from attending the school in which their parent works. This is because of the concern that a teacher may not be able to detach their work from their family life and give equal treatment to all students. Principal Warner does not think this has been an issue at Kettle Run.

“It’s a personal decision to do so and most staff prefer not to teach their children,” wrote Warner. “I have to believe that most students prefer not to be taught by a parent. I don’t worry about the difference in treatment because most staff, oddly enough, will go out of their way to ensure that their child is not treated differently, which sometimes leads to the potential for the child to be treated differently, so they stay away from that arrangement.”

It’s one thing to have a parent who is one of your teachers, but it is another thing to have one of your parents as a coach in the sport you play. Senior Ellyse Sutliff plays travel volleyball with the support of her mother. However, Sutliff also plays for Kettle Run’s varsity team, and her mother is one of the coaches. Though she is not Sutliff’s own coach, she is at every practice and game. Sutliff’s relationship with her mother has not changed significantly inside of school versus at home.

“We act pretty much the same,” said Sutliff. “I would say our coach and player relationship is different than our mom and daughter relationship, just because she helps me with different things as a coach than she does as a mom.” Sutliff, like MacMahon, enjoys having a parent in the building with her all day. “I got to eat lunch with my mom all first semester, and it’s really helpful when I need her to sign something,” said Sutliff. “There isn’t really a ‘worst thing’ for me. My mom and I are pretty close anyway.”

Overall, students feel that there are good and bad things about having a parent work in their school. For the most part these things are positive.