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How to manage expectations as a teacher

Large Wreath

Brought to you by:

WE Development

Large Wreath

Content written by:

WE Development

Last Updated:

9 June 2021 at 2:45:47 am

Image by Daniel Mirlea
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When the student is not performing, and the parent is asking why, what can I do??

As a teacher, some will say we have three bosses; student, parent, and management. How can we then manage their expectations and achieve a win-win situation for all

Here are some ways you may consider!


Student's expectations can be very complicated to handle. They are either;

1) driven to score well

2) felt like being forced to study

3) in between driven to score well and forced to study

4) not motivated to study because of distractions

To manage their expectations, you can consider letting them feel comfortable with you first. Once they like you, they will start to pay more attention in your class. This is when it will depend on your teaching style and approach method to keep them interested and connected!

For cases when students are distracted, this can cause issues. Their sources of distraction could be; peers, relationships, outside school activities, and more. 

When your insistence for them to follow the rules triggered their rebellious character, it can be very complicated. Getting the balance is important!


Parent's expectations may be complicated. They can either;

1) want their child to do well

2) demand that their child has to do well

3) curious how their child's performance is compared to others

4) for some reasons, they have to see my management

To manage their expectations, it is important to let the parent understand their child's performance, typically strengths and weaknesses. Articulate examples to explain that different children perform differently, and it is essential to understand their child's mindset.

When chanced upon unreasonable parents, focus the conversation on areas that you both agree. Remind yourself not to react emotionally but diplomatically in the direction of their child's well-being. 

If you cannot handle the situation, you need to know when to activate your management since they can enter as a "middle person" to resolve the case.


Management's expectations can be straightforward. They will be happy as long as they see;

1) good results

2) ensure classes are conducted as planned

3) proactive and adopt continuous improvement

4) no problems are escalated to them

5) follow instructions

To manage their expectations, you need to show and prove that you can execute the above. Many times, following instructions, can be an issue, and you need to explain reasonably for them to trust you. 

This helps build your credibility, and when difficult issues starts to escalate, your management can make a better judgment call.

Do note that the problems and responsibilities of the teachers who are in school versus tuition centre can be very different. However, the solutions and the approach can still be similar.

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