Difficult situation, please advise!
By degasdancer
On 09/05/2014 01:36:29
hello Ladies, Its been awhile since I posted, hope everyone is having a good start to the new season. I am very concerned about how best to handle a situation I have with a longtime student who wants to be on my competition team. She has been with me since she was 3....she has always been way too emotional (crying frequently about non-issues, I think for attention), and has grown from what was once just cute chubby to the past several years what would be considered medically obese. She recently asked me what she needs to do to get into the company. I've worked with overweight dancers before who were strong in Mind & body and achieved good technique.....but this is not what's going on in this situation, she is frankly lazy and lacks concentration because she thinks she already knows all of the answers in class. This student is frequently in tears during somepoint of my ballet class due to the exhertion, but this wasn't a hard class (and I work my company kids harder in rehearsal). I really don't know if she could possibly toughen up mentally and do better in a few years....but I know right now she is not ready for the rigors of company rehearsals and comps. Any advice on how to handle this? The problem is, although she has been slow to move up, she is in class now with girls who will be on our competition team who are much younger than she is, because they are emotionally and physically ready. She is not, and will not be invited. Ugh, I feel so bad about this. But I can't hold the others back! I've always done competition team by invitation, this year we've been thinking of doing auditions, but this situation gives me pause. I feel badly for the child, she wants to be on the team but she just isn't ready mentally or physically. Any advice on how to proceed? I'm dreading the fallout.
re: Difficult situation, please advise!
By stargaze
On 09/05/2014 22:47:32
I just dealt with a similar situation…mom and dancer pushing for the girl to be "moved up" into the more advanced class for her age group. We are not a competition studio, but the situation is similar. Long story short…after the mom kept emailing me about the more "age appropriate" class, I had to call them both in for a meeting. I outlined what is expected from the kids in the "advanced' class and discussed what areas the dancer can work on. (I never mentioned the fact that it is the "advanced class"…) This student is lazy, has all the answers in class and claims injury when constructively corrected. In the most positive way I could, I explained what she needs to work on in order to SHOW ME that she has what it takes to push herself in order to get into that class. I think Mom was taken aback a little to discover that 1-her kid was a lot more lazy than she thought in class, 2-that i had printed out Positive and Constructive points to address during the meeting, 3-not only did I observe this behaviour but so did her other instructors, not sure if she knew how communicative I am with my staff about student progress and 4-Mom was a little embarrassed when I addressed all of the specific issues (in a constructive "this is what you need to do" sort of way). The meeting turned out great. I hope the same for you and your student if you choose to venture down the same road. I learned from this that sometimes you can't candy coat things, you need to lay your cards on the table and hope that the student retains the goals you outlined and works towards giving it 110%! I agree with you…do NOT move the student into the company…she needs to prove that she is ready willing and able to participate giving it her all. Best of luck! Please keep us updated.
re: Difficult situation, please advise!
By degasdancer
On 09/07/2014 22:31:46
Thanks ladies! YOur feedback is so helpful!

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