Carlmont welcomes not only friendships, but families


Mandy Hitchcock

Griffin Soelberg, and his parents, Ken and Danette Soelberg, who work on campus as a teacher and librarian, said: “I like [being on the same campus as my parents] because it makes me feel like I’m at home when I’m actually at school—I have a better attitude about school.”

Mandy Hitchcock, ScotCenter Editor-in-Chief

It’s a morning like any other: your parent drops you off with your backpack slung over your shoulder… and walks into the school with you.

Carlmont High School harbors close student friendships. But a few students have a more literal relationship with those around them.

Sophomore Isaac Braunstein attends class everyday like all other students, but once the bell for first period rings, Patricia Braunstein’s AP European History class begins alongside him.

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I try to keep school and home separate most of the time, which is difficult when both of your parents are teachers—it does quite the opposite.”

— Isaac Braunstein

I try to keep school and home separate most of the time, which is difficult when both of your parents are teachersit does quite the opposite. I try to address my mom as a teacher during the school day, but afterward she becomes my parent,” Isaac Braunstein said.

However, some students feel this schedule placing is unfair.

“Isaac sometimes seems like he knows what’s gonna happen in class, especially when there’s an agenda change; maybe a test will be moved and everyone spent the night before cramming, but he knew ahead of time,” Joselyn Brown* said.

Gregory Schoenstein also advises against students learning under their parent.

“A teacher lacking integrity may favor their student in terms of grading and policy enforcement. The student may feel emboldened try to get away with breaking rules, cheating, or even slacking off if they think their parent will bail them out,” Schoenstein said.

Despite wishes to avoid such a pairing in a classroom, sometimes a student’s schedule will limit them to that specific class.

Also, some other students do not see the pairing as a problem.

Albert Li, a student in Patricia Braunstein’s first period, commented on Isaac being in his mom’s class and said: “It’s not something that affects me or changes how the class is taught. I don’t think they receive any different treatment than other students since Ms. Braunstein is not biased and grades everyone fairly.”

Especially with a teacher’s attention divided among some 30 other students, it is easy for teachers to differentiate between being a classroom teacher first and a parent later.

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I think I have a lot to teach my classes and I’m happy my son has the chance to benefit from that.”

— Patricia Braunstein

I think I have a lot to teach my classes and I’m happy my son has the chance to benefit from that,” Patricia Braunstein said. “I don’t think there is any problem because we have a very normal relationship in class as a teacher and student and I try to have a normal relationship with him after class as a parent; I try to switch hats to make it work.”

Not to mention, there is available extra homework help at home.

Isaac Braunstein said, “I always have the opportunity to discuss the lecture topics that day with someone. Having my mom as an AP Euro teacher [helps] since I forget to write down the homework a third of the time.”

However, there are also stigmas to overcome. Principal Ralph Crame’s position places heavier expectations on his son, Gregory Crame.

“[My son has to] watch what he does as well. He doesn’t get to be as free as other students, though I do try to push independence on him as much as possible,” Ralph Crame said.

Having a known school figure as a parent comes with the attached presumptions.

Gregory Crame said, “Because I am known as the son of the principal, people expect me to be smart or get good grades.”

But with an overall awareness of the time and setting, simply being on the same campus has its own benefits as well.

“If other students praise my dad, I get to tell him about it. He deserves to know that he is doing a really good job here,” Gregory Crame said.

Likewise, Ralph Crame is able to spend more time with his son than if he attended another high school.

“Because we don’t live in the area, we are able to drive in and leave together, and the time I spend with him is valuable to me because I want to be a part of their lives as much as possible as a parent,” Ralph Crame said.

*To preserve the anonymity of this student, her name has been changed.

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