Should I be apologetic?


Oct 22, 2006
My son is a Senior in high school and in Drama. He was given the lead part for their UIL competition. He was fantastic and won Best Actor and his co-star won Best Actress which is never given to the same school; so you can imagine how proud we all were.

To be honest and fair, the play was shown at school as a dress rehersal before the competition the day before. I was not too impressed and actually thought to myself "this play won't make it" although every one else thought it was great!

The play was called "A Runner Stumbles" and it is a very dramatic and emotional play about a Priest and one of his nuns. It could be construed very easily as a controversial play;

Anyway, Wedensday we went to watch the competition and afterwards was when the awards were announced and which 2 schools would move forward. Our school won.

The judge came out afterwards as usual to critique all of the plays and their actors so that they knew what to work on if they advanced. It took the judge close to an hour and a half to decide. We all listened very closely to what he said about each school. It came time for my son's school to be critiqued and he didn't have anything bad to say; and just complimented them on such a great play and acting and especially loved the Priest (my son).

Friday comes and we (lots of family) attend. Our school was last to go on stage. They did a great job again, but definitely not perfect like Wednesday's performance but just as powerful.

We had a new judge, which is suppose to happen. She took 10 minutes to decide. Our school did not advance but my son won Honorable Mention which actually is two steps down from Best actor. That never happens. Leads always get at least All star cast, so it was actually insulting, but we were all still very proud.

The judge comes out to do her critique and tells the cast that she did not get the time line of the play (past and present) and felt the acting was not real. The kids were upset with that part of her critique because 1) they don't choose the play and 2) she is handed a script so that she knows what to expect. So she SHOULD have known about the time line.

Anyway, I decided to send an email to our first judge and thank him because this WAS A HUGE DEAL for my son; (for many reasons that are too long to list). He kindly wrote back and said that my son was extremely talented and he should pursue that career. (He is actually going to medical school, so acting was just for fun).

I then decide to email the other judge; I thanked her for her time, and also said that the actors and schools that won that competition deserved it; and I meant it as they were all great for the most part. I also asked if she had possibly not read the play to understand the timeline in the play because that made such a difference in her determining which play advanced. I also questioned why it took her only ten minutes to decide their fate compared to the first judge who took one hour and a half.

She answered and I was satisfied with what she said, although I wasn't going to argue her justification for it, I just replied again and thanked her and mentioned that I realized how hard it is to be a judge.

Today I receive an email from my son's teacher because this judge went to the Board and complained and was extremely insulted; so my son's teacher had to reply and she was verrry upset about me doing this. (I am president of her booster club so she knows me very well). No where in the UIL rules does it state that we cannot send our praises, complaints, etc. to them. It actually gives their emails and home phone #s on the UIL website.

A short background on the teacher. She HAS NEVER STOOD UP FOR HER KIDS. She is very degrading to each of them in front of everyone. These teenagers have come to me numerous times over the past 4 years because she is so rude to them. I have always told them to ignore her meanness, but to take what she actually is trying to get across in a positive manner. Many stories I can relate but this is way to long anyway.

Here is my point. .....FINALLY.

The teacher should have stepped up immediately when the judge was critiquing and asked the same questions I did. The kids were very disappointed because she just sat there and did not defend what the judge SHOULD HAVE KNOWN. Most of the kids were crying on the bus before they left, (some because they were Seniors and it was there last performance, some because they were disappointed and all because their teacher told them "I dont know why you are all crying, you sucked, and deserved what you got" instead of having any sympathy or compassion for their hard work. She never has praised them except to actually tell my son that she could not believe how hard he worked on this play and how proud she was of him), but none to the other cast members.

This has now caused the teacher to be really pissed at me as this has to be explained to the school principal and to the Board at UIL. I don't blame her except for the fact that SOMEONE needed to step up so these kids didn't feel as though their teacher threw them to the wolves.

Had I known this was that big of deal, I would have still sent the email, but I wouldn't have been insulting (as the judge took it). I did NOT QUESTION WHY OUR SCHOOL DID NOT MOVE FURTHER, NOR WHY MY SON DIDN'T WIN BEST ACTOR. The other schools were just as deserving and that was fair enough.

Was I wrong to get answers?



Aug 21, 2006
I don't know how these drama competitions work, but I think that if I were the judge, I would have been insulted if someone asked if I had bothered to read the play and why it only took 10 minutes for me to decide. Although you say you did it in a respectful manner, the fact is, you basically said you felt she didn't do her job. So, I do see why she would be insulted.... You may have called her on it, but at the same time, maybe in the end, it was just a difference of opinion. Movies get praised and panned all the time by different critics.

As for the teacher, if you truly feel the need to stand up for the kids and be in their corner, you should have approached the drama teacher long before hand (you say you've heard about this for 4 years?) to discuss her poor attitude or possibly involved the school administration (assuming it was really that bad). I'd be careful about becoming that over-involved parent, though. Not saying you are, but I know lots of parents who get really carried away when their kids are involved!


Aug 8, 2006
it sounds like your son has an incredible future ahead of him.

i think you should emphasize his accomplishments, and praise what he is full of unfair experiences, and you can't always have your mother going after the judge/teacher.

i would feel the same way, but i think you just have to step back from the situation..and accept what happened. i don't think you can go after a judge, who probably volunteered their time...and (hopefully) did the best they could.

you sound like an amazing mother of a very bright young man. i'd let this one go, he is going to have many other successes. you don't want to look like a crazy stage mom.


Oct 22, 2006
i understand it probably was insulting to her, however, it was insulting that she said she did not understand the timeline WHICH WAS ON THE 1ST PAGE OF THE SCRIPT. Had she read it beforehand, this probably would have made a difference in her choices.

As far as approaching the drama teacher, I have.....several times and talked with her in a very nice manner how demeaning it is the way she speaks to her kids. She has actually been written up for her behavior.

I like her, I do. I think it is amazing that she can pull together these plays with so many cast members and I tell her that.

I know this is such a minor problem compared to other threads here, but I just really wanted to get it off my chest.
Apr 16, 2007
Honestly, I think you crossed the line by emailing the judge. You keep saying that you were proud of your son and that you thought he did his best - shouldn't that be enough? The judge critiqued things based on her own view of the play and your son's performance, and I think it was wrong to question her opinion just because she didn't award give your son the highest award. I just feel like part of growing up and becoming an adult is learning how to deal with life's disappointments gracefully and with dignity.

Beach Bum

Feb 17, 2006
YIKES....iM kinda guilty of something smaller and similiar..LOL...Being a mom is so hard these days.
U kinda crossed the line..(And yes..all of us moms have done it once..hehe!)...sorry,but u embarassed your son and his teacher by contacting the judge.u meant well as u r proud and u obviously love him so much...whats done is done though.


Oct 6, 2007
I see where everyone's coming from, saying you called her out but I also def. see why you would be upset...I'm sure I would be too. I think you did the right thing, as long as you were respectful (which I'm sure you were), it shouldn't be a huge problem.

The 2nd judge probably felt threatened because you may have been the first to confront her about her practices, even if you were just questioning them. I think you did what you thought was right, I probably would have done the same thing.

EDIT: I don't think she contacted the judge because of her son not getting the tip-top award...just this judge stood out compared to others by her comments/practices.


Oct 22, 2006
Actually, I'm not a stage mom. It wasn't about my son not winning top Honors. I agreed with the judge on that. I didn't disagree with her regarding the advancement either. My point was and I made that clear to her, was that she stood up there and said she did not understand the timeline of the play - which was on the 1st page of the script. Had she read it, she would have not had to make that comment.

My son told me the day he won his best actor award that if they didn't advance any further, although disappointed, he would be just as happy because his hard work paid off. He is more disappointed for each of the kids that didn't get acknowledged and they all agreed that had the judge read the script, the outcome MAY HAVE BEEN DIFFERENT.

I am so far from being a stage mom......I have been President of the booster club for 3 years and my son has never had the lead in any play and never questioned the teacher because I knew he wasn't ready or right for the part. I supported all the other cast members.

I guess maybe i am a stage mom to all of the kids - and they were very hurt their teacher did not stand up and ask the same questions I did.

Just an FYI, we were in the same boat last year and although I was disappointed, I agreed that the other schools were better, including my son's performance.

I never question anything where my son is concerned unless I feel there was an injustice done because I know there will always be disappointment to contend with and we all accept that deservedly. He is pretty strong willed and fights his own battles, however, this time I wasnt doing it solely for him as much as I was doing it for the whole cast. They deserved answers.


Oct 22, 2006
Honestly, I think you crossed the line by emailing the judge. You keep saying that you were proud of your son and that you thought he did his best - shouldn't that be enough? The judge critiqued things based on her own view of the play and your son's performance, and I think it was wrong to question her opinion just because she didn't award give your son the highest award. I just feel like part of growing up and becoming an adult is learning how to deal with life's disappointments gracefully and with dignity.[/quote]

I think you missed my point. I didnt say my son was better and deserved a higher award. She is a judge and should have read the script so she understood the timeline. That seemed to have made a difference in her determining factor.

All judges get paid for doing this. Therefore, they should take the time to read all plays beforehand and then critique after the performances. She did not. I think she was a embarrassed being called out on it, but MAYBE this will help all schools in the future. My son is graduating, so I won't really know.

He deals with disappointment every day in one or another and handles it with much grace and dignity, and very seldom do I need to get involved with anything just for that reason.

I guess I am, in a way, a stage mom for all the kids that performed. I have been with them throughout their high school years and I do alot for them, including standing up for them when needed.


Feb 5, 2006
the forest dim
It sounds as though you were plenty polite about it and they are making it into a huge deal. I don't understand why the teacher would be upset with you. You asked nicely and accepted her answer. It sounds as though you hurt the judges ego for her to make such a huge stink about it... which IMO was extremely overdramatic for her to go to the board about it! sheesh! she cannot handle that on her own? apparently the judge doesn't like being judged. lol anyways I don't think you owe anyone an apology. They are being drama queens and you were nothing but polite about it.


Jan 29, 2006
Well, the answer to your question is, No, you should not be apologetic since you clearly do not feel an ounce of remorse for whatever you did. You feel that your actions are justified. And that's fine!