The hardest parts of teaching are the parts that have very little to do with the actual teaching.
I have a student this year whose dad has custody and he is just about as uninvolved as he can be. This particular boy was not finished with his writing project on Friday, so I sent it home with him over the weekend. It didn't get done over the weekend, so today, my coteacher and I decided to call his dad to see if he could stay after school for homework club (he goes other days, but not Mondays). His dad said he couldn't stay because dad had a meeting at 3:15 and that he'd make sure it gets done tonight. Well, come to find out, the 3:15 meeting was AT SCHOOL, so there's no reason why the son couldn't go to homework club at 3:30. I saw the boy sitting in the office after dismissal at 3:45 and that's when I found out his dad was with the principal. I said to the boy, "This would be a pretty good time to work on your essay, wouldn't it?" and he said, "No, I'll probably do it at home." I was so upset that this kid (who we've bent over backwards for all year) and his dad weren't worried about it that I just said, "Ok" and went to my classroom. It just makes me so sad and frustrated that this dad doesn't value education and therefore, this 11 year old boy has basically given up too.
I'm pretty sure I won't be given a completed essay tomorrow, but maybe he'll surprise me.