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  1. #1
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    Tough love or too far?

    With a 1.222 GPA, I'm glad to see this Mom taking steps to get her son motivated, but are her tactics acceptable? What would you do differently?

    "A frustrated mother in Florida is using some tough love to push her teenage son to get better grades.

    Ronda Holder forced her son, James Mond III, to stand on a Tampa Bay street corner with a sign stating:

    "I DID 4 Questions on my F-Cat AND Said I Wasn't Going to Do it!" said the sign, written in black marker on a large piece of paper hanging around the 15-year-old's neck. "GPA 1.22... Honk if I NEED [an] Education."

    The 33-year-old mother said she wanted to embarrass her child into taking his education seriously.

    "You take the phone. You take things from them... It don't work," Holder told Fox 13 News in Tampa Bay. "So embarrassing is the best thing. He don't like to get embarrassed."

    She plans to make him continue standing on the corner every day until his grades improve." (More at link)

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nati...in_school.html

  2. #2
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    I read about this earlier and I am 100% behind the parents.

  3. #3
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    I am not sure that embarrassing a kid will motivate them to do better in school, however it sounds as though the mother could use a better education too. 'don't' instead of 'doesn't' ?

  4. #4
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    I am kind of on the fence about it too. Maybe if he did something he should be embarrassed about, like stole her car one night or something stupid like that.

    But bad grades often mean a kid needs help. And even if the mom says it is only because he is not turning in work or studying for tests, that is often because they give up and are already embarrassed because it is too hard.

    Instead of standing out with a sign he should be sitting with a good tutor imo.

  5. #5
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    Shaming, which we all have our view on if this is or isn't in this case, never works. It's aversion, at best... imo.

    The child will have to be motivated from within, not a street corner.

    I don't see how embarrassing this child will bring about any self esteem that is obviously need. You know, the kind that pats you on the back and says "You can do it! I believe in you!!"

    My question is, where was Mom when the fundamentals for this child's education was building its foundation? Say in kindergarten?
    "Minds are like parachutes. They only function when they are open." - James Dewar

  6. #6
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    I don't like this method to get the 15 yr old to improve his grades. I find it harsh and to embrass is not the way to motivate. At that age, it won't work but could cause some emotional issues. As stated, where was all the care lavished upon him years earlier? Habits that have to do with school are usually reinforced at a young age.

    I think it won't work and I do not like it at all.

    Goz

  7. #7
    keeponsearching's Avatar
    keeponsearching is offline The mighty Oak was once a little nut that stood its ground.
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    Im not so sure.. But I will say maybe the mom wants him to have a better education than her. Now that being said. I always wonder if kids have anxiety over school. I know I did. I did great on school work, but during test time, I would not do so well. I didn't even realize it untill I was much older. Not to mention talking in front of the class. I know there is a huge population that does not like standing in front of people. Maybe for the kids in school that re flunking, they should at least give a chance to see if thats really the case, or if it is stress. I'm reading the shy child, I have a very shy child. And its tough. Reading about what she might be thinking, when she goes into an uncomfortable situation, reminds me so much of myself. I just want to help her, so she can go farther. I would hope all parents would want to help there child... So really Im not so sure about this embarrassing, it could just be his problem in school.

  8. #8
    Kimberlyd125's Avatar
    Kimberlyd125 is offline Softball is for everyone. Fast pitch is for athletes.
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    I think she knows her child better than we do. If she thinks this is the best way to make him straighten up, who are we to say it's not.
    I see nothing wrong with what's she's doing.
    As far as critiquing her grammar, maybe that's why she cares so much. She wants him to get a better education than she did. Maybe she didn't have anybody who cared enough when she was in school.

    JMO
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  9. #9
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    From Reality Orlando's link in first post:
    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nati...in_school.html
    Florida mom Ronda Holder uses humiliation to get teen son James Mond III to do better in school
    By Michael Sheridan
    DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
    Monday, February 21st 2011, 11:39 AM

    "You take the phone. You take things from them... It don't work," Holder told Fox 13 News in Tampa Bay. "So embarrassing is the best thing. He don't like to get embarrassed."
    The hair stylist and niece of a former Tampa Bay police chief didn't finish high school herself, and neither did the teen's father, James Mond Jr. But both parents were angry that no matter how hard they tried, James Mond III wouldn't put in the effort.

    "He'd tell us, 'That school doesn't give homework' or 'That teacher has a problem with me,'" James Mond Jr. told the St. Petersburg Times. "He just sat there looking up at the roof like he wasn't listening."
    For Holder, she just wants her kid to get an education so he can get a job and have a shot at a real future.

    "I don't want any of my kids to stand by the side of the road asking for change," Holder told the St. Petersburg Times.
    He just thinks standing on the corner is embarrassing now. Wait until he is doing it for food and shelter because he can't get a job, when it is the real deal not just momma trying to make a point. She obviously knows her child and is trying to get him to straighten up. If the kid dropped out of school, joined a gang and did something illegal to get noticed on this board, her mothering abilities would be impugned then too and all would be wondering why she didn't try to do more.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaxson View Post
    I am not sure that embarrassing a kid will motivate them to do better in school, however it sounds as though the mother could use a better education too. 'don't' instead of 'doesn't' ?
    At least she is smart enough to know that her son needs an education.


  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by katydid23 View Post
    I am kind of on the fence about it too. Maybe if he did something he should be embarrassed about, like stole her car one night or something stupid like that.

    But bad grades often mean a kid needs help. And even if the mom says it is only because he is not turning in work or studying for tests, that is often because they give up and are already embarrassed because it is too hard.

    Instead of standing out with a sign he should be sitting with a good tutor imo.
    Sometimes they are just lazy. My son had a very high IQ, yet he graduated High School barely. He is now in College and doing well but mainly because he is in competition with his girl friend.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gozgals View Post
    I don't like this method to get the 15 yr old to improve his grades. I find it harsh and to embrass is not the way to motivate. At that age, it won't work but could cause some emotional issues. As stated, where was all the care lavished upon him years earlier? Habits that have to do with school are usually reinforced at a young age.

    I think it won't work and I do not like it at all.

    Goz
    I have a son that drove me crazy. I tried everything. When he was 16 I gave up. I told him I didn't care anymore he had just pushed me so far and I had tried everything. I told him if he failed he would have to work and pay his own way through summer school. He did just enough not to fail. Maybe that Mother is in the same place I was. I don't see embarrassing him working either. And I wouldn't have done it but I know that feeling of just hoping you will find something that works.

  13. #13
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    She is clearly frustrated. Maybe the kid will get a wake-up call, who knows. Or maybe he will drop out as soon as its legal. She'll probably get blamed either way. Sounds like if he wouldn't finish the test, he wasn't even trying. I just hope she isn't charged with something. Maybe she went overboard but I doubt it is because she doesn't care about her child.
    Just my opinion, of course.

  14. #14
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    I didn't read the responses, but wanted to say this is wrong on so many levels. The first rule as a parent is to break no spirit. By humuliating a child like this, you break their spirit. It teaches them they are worthless, no good, and they can't possibly be winners.

    Many of you know, I have a teen. He's not perfect by any means, and comes home with the occasional F and D. I attribute it to laziness. I now keep in touch weekly with his teachers, know what his weakness are, and we take steps to fix it.

    As parents, we are the most important teachers. If our child fails, or if my child fails, guess who I blame? ME! I need to make sure he has the tools to succeed. This means a strict schedule, a quiet place to study, no distractions, and plenty of interaction. Yah, I had to learn this the hard way when I began to fail him as a parent.

    Don't give up on your kids - please. Humiliation, neglect, or just turning your back does so much harm.

    MOO

    Mel

  15. #15
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    It makes me wonder how many distractions remain in the home... does he have a TV in his room? Video games? Does this mother check his homework? Does she make sure he has a good breakfast and an adequate lunch? Dinner? Is there a routine in place that insists on schoolwork? Is a good night's sleep a priority?

    If not, I'd like to stand her a$$ on the corner with a sign that says: I'm a lax parent and I'm failing my child-- Honk if you think I need an education!

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