Lost jumpers, missing pencil cases and misplaced drink bottles drive all parents mad! Children who are careless with their possessions or disorganised, are the bane of parents’ and teachers’ lives.
Understandably, parents who have to buy the third expensive jumper for the year can be very angry – not only with the child but sometimes with the teacher!
Children under the stress of having lost yet another thing can also resort to the quick answer of ‘someone stole my jumper’! Anything to get themselves off the hook!
The jumper has gone, so is theft a reasonable conclusion or not?
Teachers’ hearts drop when parents arrive at the classroom door with their suspicions that their child’s possession or clothing has been stolen by another child. It means everyone is under suspicion till the mystery is cleared up.
Teachers tread carefully as they navigate the endless discussions with the children to find out what each knows. As well as many hours of talking with students, it results in much searching in the school yard, the lost property box, corners of the classroom and often asking classmates to search their bags.
Of course stealing can happen. Teachers do or should take it seriously.
When a spate of stealing hits a school, all teachers and leadership need to be involved to investigate and stop these incidents which undermine the trust which is central to school life.
But take heart, nine times out of ten the item turns up!
Parents would be amazed at how many children do not recognise their own clothing and innocently take another child’s jumper thinking it is theirs.
A student can accidently put their jumper into the wrong bag. Hopefully, it will be found by the other parent when they do the weekend cleanout. But busy working parents will admit that it can be days, even weeks, before they check the school bag. Children surprisingly don’t notice the rotting apple at the bottom of the backpack let alone an extra jumper.
One family I remember well was very upset and angry that an expensive blazer had been stolen. It certainly seemed that way as it was never found despite days and weeks of searching at school and home. Eighteen months later the mother graciously revealed that it had been found hanging at the end of the dad’s wardrobe.
Things do go missing. Are they stolen? Sometimes. But nine times out of ten they are misplaced or left and forgotten.
A great way to avoid a lot of angst and frustration for everyone is to please NAME all clothing!!