There was not a day that went by back home where I wouldn't want to say this to a parent. Not always my parents, but a parent of some student none-the-less. Why? Because parents always have a hard time believing that their very sweet little Johnny or Suzie could possibly be causing trouble, not doing work, etc. I get it. You want to protect your child. More importantly, you want to believe that your child is not a dumb ass that makes teachers go, "Damn. I got him this year." But, the reality is, your kid isn't perfect!
Well, let me tell you, there is no difference with the parents overseas. It is not a cultural thing, but simply a parent thing. I have two parents that want so badly to believe their kids behaviors are simply due to lack of English and lack of understanding. Now, in the beginning, I would be sympathetic to that idea. Hell, I'd even buy into it. But, not now. Not when I know the kids and how they are. And the kids truly understand the word "NO". Here is the kicker though. That word is RARELY used at home with some of these kids. They are allowed to do what they want, when they want, and they run the adults. No joke. I get so frustrated with parents who want to do every little thing for their kid. They want to unpack the book bag, take off their child's coat, etc., etc. I have put a very abrupt stop to that in my room. I now tell parents to say goodbye and get out - in a polite (as polite as possible) way. If you are paying the amount of money they do for their kid to come to school, the kid needs to be school ready.
I had a family member today ask when they could spend the day observing me. My response: You can't. Ugh. I send home a few notes of how a child isn't listening and I get this. "But she was in school before and was never misbehaved." Oh, really? Because now she is. It is not an English issue. I believe some of it could be a cultural issue though. Americans expect so much more from the kids at this age, in terms of behavior. Or, at least this American does. When I say "sit down" or "clean up", I expect children to do such. If they choose to run around, throw toys, etc., then yes, a note is going home. And it has nothing to do with lack of understanding. It has to do with someone cleaning up for them at home. Well, sorry, but I'm not your mother or your maid.