A Shrewdness of Apes

An Okie teacher banished to the Midwest. "Education is not the filling a bucket but the lighting of a fire."-- William Butler Yeats

Friday, January 21, 2011

The End of Semester Boogaloo

Yes, the semester has stumbled its way to the end, and once again, the praying, the wheedling and the dealmaking with God has begun again--and that's just the teachers struggling with the crash of the servers that store our grades for only the bajillionth time. On the student side, here come the kids who suddenly want to give me assignments that are months---MONTHS!-- overdue.

Sadly, some of my students did not earn their credits and failed the class. I find this absolutely mind-blowing. I had one little darling's mother call me and begin to breathe fire all over me since she claimed that I had refused to stay after school to help her kid even though the kid had told mom she had made repeated appointments with me. It is rare to have so breathtaking an example of falsehood directed my way. I explained to the parent that I am available every day after school for at least 45 minutes, that I had asked the kid repeatedly to take advantage of this time, but she did not, and I also pointed out that I had emailed the mother herself five times with no response. Well, her kid couldn't meet with me until 4:00, the mom claimed, because she was involved in an after school activity. I then reminded Mama that I had contacted the coach and gotten the okay for the student to miss a few minutes of practice to come see me (can't play if you are not eligible due to GPA, and mine wasn't the only class in which this students was sinking) but still the young lady did not come. Still the mother claimed that I refused to stay after school to help her daughter who had BEGGED me for help, so I forwarded her on to my administrator-- who personally could vouch for the fact that I had repeatedly contacted the daughter, the coach, and the mother and had been at school for the amount of time I had stated. I did warn the poor man ahead of time that Mama would be calling. And meanwhile, let me just state that I will not be staying after school for two hours on the off-chance that this young lady might show up, given that a) I awaken at 4:30 am to be at school on time, and b) I have my own children to care for after school.

Oh well. Then another kid asked to turn in any missing assignments because otherwise MS. CORNELIUS would be the reason he didn't get into Dartmouth. Yes, me--NOT his lack of certain completed work, and the corresponding drop that then followed on his tests because he had not done the work to prepare himself for the tests.

Kid C at least asked nicely if I could check over his grades and see if I could see how close he was to an A, since he was sitting at an 89%. And I did. He was actually sitting at an 88.6 that had been rounded up to an 89. Then I went and looked at his test average, and there had not even been one test score above a 90%. So unfortunately, no, I figured the grade was pretty representative of his actual level of mastery.

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At 1/21/11, 6:39 AM, Blogger Mrs. Chili said...

I've come to the point in the year where I give up chasing the kids and start my meditative practice of compassionate detachment. Oooohhhmmmmm.....

At 1/21/11, 7:41 PM, Blogger Ms Characterized said...

I'm thinking of starting every class with a rollicking verse of "I Don't Round"!

Keep the faith!

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