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School Attendance and Grade Issues

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

HHB didn't go to school again yesterday. That is 2 Friday's in a row that she didn't go to school. So far, by my calculations, she has missed 11 days this semester, which is 2 days more that she is allowed by state law (state law is that she must attend 90% of the semester to get credit, and there are 90 days of school in each semester...5 days * 6 weeks * 3 grade periods). Why do I care? As I've mentioned before, DH has to pay child support until HHB graduates from high school if she is not graduated by the age of 18. HHB turns 18 March of 2017, and is supposed to graduate May of 2017...meaning, May 2017 was to be the LAST month of child support. However, at this rate, it appears currently that this graduation date is going to get pushed out until May 2018...meaning 12 extra months of child support because BM cannot parent enough to make HHB get at least passing grades AND have proper attendance! Sure, HHB didn't get the best grades while living with us, but she at least passed everything and we wouldn't let her miss school "just because". HHB has already had more absences in 4 months at BM's than she had in 2 years with us! This affects me, because I'm already covering part of DH's share of the household bills because he has to pay child support, and he does not make enough monthly to cover child support, his bills, AND his half of the household expenses (mortgage, electricity, water, trash, internet). So, the longer he has to pay child support, the longer I have to cover. I have a bio in college, which technically, since DH adopted my bios, DH is supposed to be equally responsible for, but I'm paying 100% of BS20's expenses myself!

As of a couple of weeks ago, HHB was supposed to make up the 4th and 5th grading periods for several core classes by computer. I don't know what her other grades were, but she was carrying a 28% for the semester in chemistry. I'm seriously doubting she has done any work on this, and she has only about 4 weeks left of school for this school year. Chances are pretty high that she isn't doing well the 6th grading period, either...and we don't even want to think about finals in a few weeks that count as 1/4 of her semester grade! Of course, BM has no interest in making HHB do well in school, because she KNOWS DH still has to pay child support as long as HHB is in high school, and the state will not kick her out of the school system until her 21st birthday! BM actually makes out well if HHB is a 5th year high school student! The girl will probably NEVER be home (because with HHB's current attitude, once she turns 18, she will surely pull the "I'm an adult, and I'll come and go as I please" crap), and BM will still collect money! I find myself praying every day that HHB will just drop out after this year (seeing as emo girlfriend is supposed to graduate anyway) and get her GED! That will be the BEST option for everyone! As much as the girl likes to try to say she wants to go to college, she already shows she doesn't have what it takes to be a college student. She is best to try her hand at community college or a trade school!

Well, today is prom day. DH is on his way to go drop off child support money. Surprisingly, BM hasn't bothered to try to call or text him yet. I fully expected her to be screaming about the money on Thursday, because HHB would want to get her hair or nails done to be her girlfriend's date at the prom. If I would have to guess who is the "girl" in the relationship, yeah, HHB is definitely the more girly, makeup, nails all have to be on point! Oh wait, the FRONT of HHB's hair has to be on point...she never bothers to look at the back which always looks like a greasy, multi-colored mess from bad self-dye jobs! DH decided that he would go ahead and go drop off the money so that he wouldn't have to deal with BM screaming at him while we were at church in the morning, or while he was at work Monday, because she usually picks the absolutely wrong time to start throwing the money fit! I wonder if she will try to tell DH she needs more again when he goes to drop it off. I also wonder how that dress is working out for HHB! The HHB I saw last weekend was at least a size 10, and that dress is only a 3!

BarkAtTheMoon's picture

Would it be too much to revisit the CS situation in court? Can you bring up BM's poor track record with having HHB attend school? I wish HHB would get a job and pay for her own shit. Then maybe she would move out with emo or whoever. If HHB quit school and dropped out would CS end at 18? That may be the only way to guarantee no more than two years CS for DH. Otherwise if HHB keeps attending when she wants and being half-assed, then she is technically attending. And failing. And repeating classes to be a 5th year HS student.

What are all of these lazy BMs going to do when the Skids are done with school and CS stops? I remember my SDs' BM had to get a job when she and DH split. It was so she could get health insurance for herself. Good thing because she got cancer for the second time three years later.
She wasn't the best BM, always nickled and dimed DH for shit and would bitch when we did it back. I don't want to speak ill of the dead, but we DO get social security for SD13 every month. From BM....beyond. Thank goodness.

~ Moon

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

Going back to court could be risky. BM at this point basically has grounds to declare herself disabled, which could make DH have to pay more child support than he already is. AND, this late in the game, college would definitely come up! Currently, DH is not obligated to help pay for college of any kind. If he tried to take it to court now, he could get stuck finding a way to pay half of whatever HHB MAY attend, even if it is just community college. He could get stuck paying BM or HHB money well into her 20's for her just to take one or two classes at the community college each semester!

BM has not worked a day since HHB was born. When BM's sister died some 7-8 years ago, she went into this downward spiral of depression. She is now supposedly on all kinds of meds with a diagnosis of bipolar. She went from being a size 2 to only being able to wear MEN'S XXL or larger sweat pants and t-shirts. She has some sort of colon or bowel disease now (and they are not ruling out the possibility of colon cancer) that doctors have linked to her terrible diet and being morbidly obese. So yeah, if we went to court, she would cry disability, and the judge would eat it up and make DH pay more child support, because poor, poor BM couldn't get a job if she wanted to!

Oh, and let's NOT forget we do not want any doors open for a judge to order custody to DH! I do NOT want that girl back in this house! I don't think she is ever going to launch, and I'm not putting up with her lazy and disrespectful butt under my roof for who knows how long!

Seriously, I agree that HHB needs to get a job at this point! The girl is 16, and has a girlfriend with a car. Within 2 miles of their current house there are tons of fast food places, restaurants and retail shops. Both of my bios had jobs at 16, even when the nearest place for them to work was 10 miles from our house! BD24 worked in a video game store...BS20 worked as a bus boy for a while, and when he turned 18, went to work for a large hardware retail chain (have to be at least 18 to work there because of the liability/workers comp). Before that, both BD24 and BS20 would pick up odd jobs around the neighborhood...cut lawns, walk dogs, etc. It is about time HHB start learning about life, and how to take care of her self, because the BANK OF DAD is getting ready to close!

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

I would have to look into that. Nothing I have read so far indicate that DH can file to have HHB declared emancipated, only the provisions that a minor can file for emancipation. Of course, one key point is that the 16+ minor must show that they are financially independent! So, I'm taking that to mean just moving in with a friend does not classify them as financially independent (i.e., if she moves out and goes to live with emo girlfriend at her parents').

Luckily, the parent is not on the hook for college expenses here unless it is specifically outlined in the court order. DH's court order says nothing about college! HHB does talk about wanting to go to college, but I can't help but wonder how much of that is just talk to play up to dear daddy...make him think she is actually trying to do something with her life. Of course, the only college she has talked about going to is a known party school, and DH has already told her that if she goes there, she is on her own! He refuses any help if she goes to college just to party (which, with all her talk about sororities, etc...yeah, she thinks college is party time). Good thing for us is that the school she wants to go to is a Div I college, meaning, with all the credits she needs to make up by computer, she will not be accepted! That happened to a friend of BS20's. That kid had to go to a year of community college and then transfer to the Div I college he wanted to go to! BS20 is at a Div II college...a very small Div II Christian college where there are NO fraternities or sororities! There are only some 1,100 students on campus, and then about as many off campus doing their graduate work. Undergrads are required to live on campus unless their parents live within 30 miles of the school. Then, the student can live with their parents. DH suggested a similar type school to HHB, thinking that the smaller classes and such would be of benefit to her, as well as the on-campus requirement, but she made this disgusted face and said no way she would go to a school like that! Yup, that expressed her college intentions right there! Not going to matter now anyway. She wanted to go for dance, now she has abandoned dance and thinks she is a thespian and wants to study theater! She thinks she is being accepted into Advanced Theater, but they have not revealed the results of tryouts yet. My bet (my hope) is that they are checking up on grades and stuff before they decide. BS20 was in Advanced Theater...lots of work required, and they need to know that the people they bring in are up to it and are dependable! I mean, you can't be scrambling to fill a part with an understudy 3 days before a major performance because someone failed classes!

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

HHB would never agree to go to summer school! That would cut in to much with her sunbathing by the pool time, now that she lives in a neighborhood with 2 pools she can go to free of charge. I'm sure HHB and her emo girlfriend will be in their little bikinis all laid out all summer. Gag...just the thought disgusts me...not because they are two girls into each other, but because HHB has gained so much weight, no one wants to see her tummy hanging over the top of bikini bottom! I won't even wear a bikini...I'm still working on getting my skin to tighten up after losing a ton of weight , and it has been 2 years since the weight has come off (yes, it takes a long time for the skin to go back...if ever).

Not to mention, summer school would mean that BM has to spend the child support on something worthwhile, rather than give HHB her cut and take the rest for herself. Yes, that is how it is working in that house! Summer school is $75 per semester credit, and at this point, she would need to make up no less than 4, as she is failing all her core classes (math, English, science, and social studies). She got her full credit for the first semester, because she lived with us. DH didn't do much in the way of parenting, but he did stay on her about getting at least a passing grade. She caught hell from him right before she moved out because she barely passed the semester for all credits!

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

That is what they told her she has to do for the 4th and 5th grading periods already for several classes, but with only 4 weeks left in the school year, I'm thinking it is unlikely that she will finish those up, and end up having to take the whole semester for those classes. Only problem with making them up on the computer is that it takes initiative...she has to want to get through it, or she won't. I mean, if she isn't doing the work with the teacher on her ass, I doubt she is going to do the work by herself on a computer!

onthefence2's picture

My son just turned 14 and he has gotten SUPER lazy. It's driving me nuts. He literally is failing 8th grade. And we HOMESCHOOL! He knows he can get it done "whenever" but "whenever" never comes. Later never comes. He has had mush brain since 6th grade when puberty went into overdrive. He's just gotten passionate about drumming, so I guess I'm going to have to beat him with his sticks.

Rags's picture

He is in 8th grade, home schooled, and is failing? Guess what? This is entirely your fault.

He should have you and XDH so up his ass that he would beg to do homework even if he had already done it all.

If he wants to beat on dead animal skins with sticks then he damned well better have straight As, have every possible chore completed to perfection, and he had better be Yes/NO Ma'am/Sir-ing you, XDH, and your respective SOs
to a state of parental nirvana.

We went nearly insane with our son during his turn during that phase. He is exceptionally intelligent and spent more time and effort figuring out how not to do his school work than he did actually doing it. He knew the policy that to fail a whole year he had to fail the same two classes two grading periods in a row. So, the first 6wks he was a straight A student and the next 6wks we were lucky if he passed. We punished, we begged, we pleaded, we cajoled... until we finally realized his happiness and interest did not matter one bit. Our goal and responsibility was to get him graduated. So, we made his life an abject living hell until we got him across the HS graduation stage.

Our stance was that we would force him to graduate then he could figure out how to grow up on his own time and his own dime. It worked wonders.

He is now doing great. Has just finished year 4 of his initial 6yr USAF enlistment. He is up for Staff Sgt and is applying to retrain from "computers" to a Flight Nurse 2yr associates degree commissioning program. He intends to stay in for at least 20 years then retire and go private sector in his late 30s.

So, take the sticks, frog march him to the study grind stone and let him know that he touches drum sticks only if he delivers on his school responsibilities.

When he has a HS diploma then he can grow up on his own time and his own dime and you have done parental due diligence.

IMHO of course.

Good luck.

Rags's picture

Lol! Ditz, your eldest and I are kindred spirits. I was 19 when I graduated from HS also. I was a two sophomore year guy myself.

I has a National JR Honor Society kid in Jr. High (what we used to call Middle School back in the dark ages), and then my teen boy brain fart, hormone, know it all phase kicked in and I passed only one class my first sophomore year. For the rest of HS including my second sophomore year through the first semester of my Sr. year I was a 4.0 student. I got a B in a college physics class the last semester of my Sr. year main
ly because I caught a major case of senioritis my last semester of HS.

My younger brother was a 1.5 Jr, and 1.5 Sr. year guy. He was a D student who got the second hightest ever score on the PSAT for that school district. The state sent all kinds of education professional wizard analysts to try to figure out why and how a historical D student blew the doors off of the PSAT. About halfway through the first semester of his Sr. year he walked into my parents bedroom one school AM asked them since they were going overseas as Expats if their new company had boarding school education benefits. The answer was yes so little bro went to school that AM and dropped out then started as a 2nd semester Jr. in January at military boarding school. The same school my dad went to, the same one I ended up at after I flunked my first Sophomore year of HS.

Interestingly my dad had a similar experience only he pulled his teen boy brain fart stunt the first semester of his 7th grade year. His military school career started at the beginning of second semester of his 7th grade year.

Now for my Skid, he was a do all the work and not turn it in guy like your sons. It drove his mom and I nuckin futz. The blue ribbon rated district we were in his 8th grade through sophomore year had the policy that it took failing the same two classes two 6 week periods in a row to flunk the entire school year. He pulled his usual straight As for the first six weeks then we were lucky in if he passed the second six weeks. That of course protected him from repeating a grade. I lost patience with him after his Sophomore year and we sent him to military boarding school for his Jr. and Sr. years. At least that was the intent. The Sperm Idiot got involved the first semester of his Sr. year and we yanked his ass home at Christmas break and kept our collective foot up his ass until he graduated on time in the Spring. By then his mom and I were about fit to be tied with him.

Your boys are lucky to have you to filter through the teen boy brain fart years, hold them accountable, and keep their noses to the grind stone. They will be fine. Those of us with teen boy Cranio-Rectal syndrome often turn out just fine with mom's like you in the picture.

Enjoy, you will laugh about it in the future. My parents do. At least they laugh between smacking my brother and I on the back of our 45 and 51 year old heads for driving them insane when we were idiot teen boys.

ChiefGrownup's picture

One reason they pass them when they haven't earned it, dtzy, is that they can't have 15 year olds lurking about elementary schools with the 6 year olds.

We learned this when my ss was 10. He'd already been held back for 3rd grade and DH was worried they'd flunk him in 4th grade as well. But at the IEP meeting at the end of the 4th grade school year they told DH ss would never be held back again because of the age thing. When you think about it, it makes total sense. At 13 my ss is one of the oldest and biggest kids on a campus full of babies and lil 'uns. It just wouldn't be good for anyone to have a kid near adult size in with much younger children.

ChiefGrownup's picture

Well, he'll have a hard landing when he goes straight from elementary to high school, though. And, no, I doubt they'll let him be a 16 year old at the current school no matter how much flunking he deserves.

tryingmom's picture

I think that too, SS15 is failing, is in alt education school and probably won't go on to the 10th grade. BM said it doesn't matter if they keep him back. DH told her that CS only goes until 18 or HS graduation if he doesn't graduate CS stops at 19 IF he is in school. BM actually brought up letting SS15 take his GED, DH said she'd be in for the fight of her life if she didn't encourage him to continue school. BM is under the microscope of school now, truancy court is not her friend, neither she or SS15 handled what the judge said to them well. All sass and crap, $1K fine. Karma!

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

I wouldn't be surprised if BM was telling HHB that it doesn't matter if she has to stay in high school a bit longer...that she could stay at home and she would continue to give her a cut of the child support directly! I mean, who really needs an education to be a dancer, model, or actress, right? Yeah, these are the things that HHB thinks she will do with her life! She has no real plan (or plan B so to speak). No, people just love her, and everyone tells her she is soooooo pretty all the time on social media. She will just smile and get paid for it! Like I've said before...I see a pole in her future!

CantKeepDoingThis's picture

Oh, and it seems prom got moved to NEXT weekend. Guess that gives HHB an extra week to starve herself into that dress (not likely, though). I was reading on the web site that students who owe hours cannot go to prom unless those hours are made up (for too many absences and such). Wonder if that goes for the guest that the junior or senior is bringing, as well? Unfortunately, I don't think it does, though it should, and I'm certain that HHB has to owe hours!

Rags's picture

At some point parents need to realize that kid happiness is secondary to launching them to figure it out on their own time and their own dime. Some kids don't need a foot to the ass, some due on a regular basis. It is a parents job to know which type of kid they are dealing with and to effectively deal with what the kid needs to be successful.

If a kid is so stubborn that they refuse to do what they should to at least make adequate progress it is a parents duty and responsibility to apply the appropriate size boot to their ass to position the kid to launch and navigate the rest of their growing up while dealing with the consequences of their own decisions.

That does not mean that the parent abandons the kid completely. If the kid starts to figure it out mom and or dad can step in to facilitate some quality decisions and even more progress. If the kid earns it with effort. I was one of those kids myself. My mom cursed my bride and I to have a kid just like me. Her curse worked. We did. Fortunately he seems to be catching a clue even younger than I did. At 22 he is further along in his adult transformational journey than I was at 26. We are past the foot up the ass phase and are now into the "how is it working out for you?" phase. He even listens upon occasion which I would have bet everything I own against ever happening at one phase of his life.

CantKeepDoingThis's picture


Problem is, in this day and age of entitlement, too many parents refuse to put those boots on and take them to some arses! Oh, and their feelings are precious, you can't hurt their feelings! You know, there are many days I want to build a time machine, go back, and shoot Dr. Spock before he ever had the chance to spout HIS take on parenting! Butts have extra padding for a reason!

ase_this1's picture

My ss15 stopped going to school. I told my wife to drag him there but she can't do that to her ONLY child. Now I end up paying 40$ a month on online school for him that is so easy it's ridiculous. He spends maybe 2 hours a week on school work, what a joke. I keep counting down the days until 18. And for the person who says kick them in the butt, I wish it were that easy. I always here from the kids friends that they do it because the parents would go to jail. They know how to play that game. NEXT.