Sunday, December 6, 2009

Excerpts From and Email

Dear Readers--

If you now behave or plan to behave like this parent, then we can no longer be friends.

I have a student, C. Since the beginning of the year, he's been too cool to be quiet in class and listen. He was absent for a few days, and for those homeworks I put a zero in the gradebook (accesible online for parents) until he turned them in. Shocker, I know. Well, turns out I never got papers from C. C's parents INSISTED that he did them and turned them in--I must have lost them or pretended to not get them "because of the sports conflict" (apparently since C and his buddies in class all play football, and I ask them to all be quiet, I hate football players. Who knew?). I told her in my sweetest teacher voice that if he could find the papers, he would get credit.

Well guess who couldn't find his papers. You wanna know what the parents said then? "Mrs. Jensen, a month is a long time to expect a 16 year old to hang on to a paper." That's why we keep binders, lady. And can we talk about why you haven't addressed these papers for a month?

Well, then I get an explanation of why his grades are important--to be eligible for sports!! You need to get the exact quote:
"Athletics are extremely important to C, as he is exremely talented. It is not a past-time, it is a talent! And now we have a son who is stressed out about the possibility of being ineligible." (MAYBE he is going to be ineligible because of that 53 he made on a test, not 3 homework papers. Tests count for 75% of the average.)

Anyway. So, then C misses the day of the next test, which was right before Thanksgiving Break. He had a mysterious patch of skin that had to be checked out by a doctor. "It could have been staff (this lady teaches language arts at one of the Georgetown elementary schools!) infection, Mrs. Jensen. Therefore, you see why C had to miss this test."

Well, since he wasn't there for the test, he didn't turn in his review with the rest of the class. So, when I graded the class's reviews, he got a zero. (What???? I am totally the worst teacher ever!!) So I get another email. This time from dad because mom is "too upset to deal with you".

Apparently, dad talked to an administrator about my grading policies (reminder--it was giving 0's for work not turned in), and he just wanted to offer some friendly advice about what else I could do instead of a zero. Maybe, I could "program a new code into the gradebook especially for absent students so that it doesn't show a zero and make everyone think that student isn't doing their work". Everyone is looking at my gradebook??!! What??!! He's "very disappointed that as a teacher I would just throw a zero in when I don't have a paper".

Here's the kicker--now, because of that new zero, C is "crushed. Disheartened. His wrestling coach said he lost all his practice matches yesterday. Please reconsider your unfair and biased treatment towards my son and all athletes."

Friday, December 4, 2009

Overheard Today...

"Harry, I'm going to Sonic, you want anything?"

"I want a mocha java chiller... and I'm NOT GAY for ordering that!!!!"