There hasn't been one quote, blog piece, article or update about the "Stress Management " Session held last month. The MEF and MHS PTO sponsored the event and promoted it in the media. I was unable to go because I work 3-11. I haven't heard one thing about what happened, what was discussed, if students were allowed to speak or what plan, follow-up and solutions were offered. All the SILENCE makes me wonder who behaved badly and what is being hidden and covered up? I was hoping for true dialogue and help for so many kids who are anxious and depressed. The teachers are equally unhappy and need to be heard and respected. I guess the reviews for the "show" weren't good and the play was "shut down" hoping to be forgotten.
I heard that it was too stressful" to report the results! However, Ed C. is working on it.
Hi, I was not actually present at either stress meeting but I know several others who were. From what I understand, the meeting this May was not a community discussion about stress, but instead a presentation about how parents can reduce stress on their children, presented by a man who does talks at several schools. The meeting actually offered a decent perspective for parents on what their child's life is like, and explained how stressed they may actually be, but did not cover changes the school administration could make at all- only changes in parent-child relationships.
I am not sure why this has barely been discussed at all, but I do know that it did not do any good for parents who already know their child is stressed, or anything for students/teachers, who did not speak at the event. Hope this helps some.
Let's see if I have this correct - so the PTO or school paid to have a speaker come in to tell parents how their kids are stressed and offered some advice to them about controlling it. As if parents don't realize when their kids are stressed out or don't know to go on the internet or purchase books to learn about stress and how best to deal with their kids? Also, there was no effort to connect the school's role in this process of stress management?
Sounds like the school system and PTO again missed an important opportunity to open up a dialogue with parents and discuss such an important topic that many parents in the system seemed concerned about. It must have been a disappointing night for many parents.
That thing was not a forum nor did it involve much dialogue other than the stagey stuff the fancy paid speaker prompted with his cutesy Gotcha prompts.
The evening began with lots of preening and at least a half hour with the MEF brass and a guy named Tug doing a ridiculous amount of long-winded self-congratulatory stuff about how many books had been written/sold, PBS features, theatrical presentations, etc., etc. They wanted us to know just exactly how they were impressed with themselves and with this speaker, and please get real anxious and go buy more of his self-help parenting books, haha, aren't we cute and engaging and oh-so-important. Then the guy talked for 2 hours nonstop (not even an intermission), which anyone in showbiz (like the puffery Tug) should have known, is not a way to keep the audience engaged. The guy has some cred, but made sure we knew about the "700 schools" he's visited and spoken at "all over the world," though he often brought it back "home" to the place that has employed him for 20 years, The Belmont Hill School. From the sounds of it, the schools he's mostly visited are very high-end, in places like the far East where there are ridiculous parental/societal expectations, etc., and Belmont Hill (a private boy's school--$48,300 for those boarding), where there are ridiculously pretentious expectations but not automatic or necessarily impressive academic "results." "Book signing and sales will take place at the end of the evening." (The guy's written 9 books, one of them, Understanding Independent School Parents.) The event was billed as a "talk" with some Q&A.
Though the guy has been on the talk circuit long enough to have a schtick and lots of anecdotes (basically it was 1.5+ hours of listening to those anecdotes) that work for people paying big bucks to hire him, it was a fairly useless way to spend 2+ hours. This guy talked to Melrose parents (lots of the MEF gang fawning over themselves in the audience) as if Melrose Schools are on a par with the elite institutions he's typically hired to address. So of course the parents there ate it up, wanting to believe they, too, are in the same league with Belmont Hill, etc. These country-club mommies need their fantasies, after all.
To be fair, there were certainly some relevant tidbits shared (though nothing new or that common sense and good connection with one's kids couldn't have produced).
This was no "stress forum" or even a workshop or dialogue. This was a talk/schmooze with a fancy self-help author/presenter. Wonder how much those MEF contributors paid for this thing. Surely they came away feeling pumped and proud that such an important person came to help them understand how stressful their children's school day is. Now they can get back to their margaritas and plan their next enchanted trip.
There was another "stress" evening (April maybe?) held at the Knights and organized by none other than the charismatic Mr. Ed. It was an exclusive, by invitation only, thing for the hand-picked MHS students who whined so well at an earlier "stress" meeting, also organized by Mr. Ed. Of course there isn't anything public to report. This is Melrose and its school system, after all!
Well, thanks for the vote of er, confidence, folks. Couldn't give a fig whether you like what was said or not. Remember, this is an anonymous message board. So if you'd rather read Disney, just go to the mayor's blog where Brigid regularly dishes up a lot of C-/D+ fantasy writing. Or just join the MEF or Birth to Five group. You'll be in great company there with the parallel reality folks.