Here is an article by Alfie Kohn that was published on Valerie Strauss' Washington Post blog, "Is parent involvement in school really useful?" Alfie is known for his penchant for challenging fixed beliefs, and, in this article, he does a great job doing just that. His comments are quite consistent with my own thoughts that parent-teacher conferencing for homework-trapped children runs the risk of causing children to feel ganged up on by parents and teachers alike, and this ends up making acting out behavior the only option the child has. The child, who looks up to his parent, sees the parent as a threat. The parent sees the child as disobedient despite the fact that the child's natural inclination is generally to please the parent. Kohn uses the word coercion, and he is absolutely right: Parents who are drawn into forcing their children to comply with teacher demands often give up their most powerful source of influence, the relationship, in an effort to coerce the child into doing things that parent did not even stop to think if that is what she wanted her child to do.
For more information on Dr. Goldberg's model, read other postings on this blog, visit his website, The Homework Trap, or read his book, The Homework Trap: How to Save the Sanity of Parents, Students and Teachers.