Sunday, March 29, 2009

Who's Really In Charge Here

Yes, some of the students have declared all-out war on school rules. What has given them this idea that they are above the law? Certainly not Mrs. Hillbilly Mom.

Let's take a look at Example 2. This was on Thursday, the day after the 15-minute visit to the library 'on the way to the bathroom' during a test. It was a different class. A class which stretches the limits of the student discipline policy, the limits of common decency, and the limits of common sense.

It was the day after a test. A test on cells and mitosis. A test of 30 questions, composed of multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, and a diagram of cell stages to explain. Plus, they could use any graded papers that were handed back. I'm not trying to find a cancer curer in this group.

The Victim did not finish his test on Wednesday, despite sideward glances at his seatmate's paper. There's a reason I make my seating chart with with A students next to A students, D students next to D students, etc. There were three students who did not finish, and one student who was absent. Those four were given the test on Thursday. The rest of the class had an assignment to read Science World magazine. We read it together, because if I just passed it out and said to read it, they would hide behind ginormous purses and backpacks, trying to text, pretending to be reading. So I call for the desks to be cleared, hands on the desk, following along while I read. Some classes will volunteer to take turns, but this one does not.

So in this class on Thursday, it is quieter than a normal day. I am the only one speaking. They know from experience that if they talk, they get a written assignment instead a peaceful day absorbing current scientific headlines. Four of them are taking the test. One of them complains. Guess which one. You got it. The Victim.

The Victim can not stand the spotlight to be off of him for an entire class period. About 10 minutes into class, he says, "Can I go take this somewhere else?" Of course the answer was 'No'. To begin with, the library was full of the book fair. Secondly, The Victim is the one always talking and making other kids unable to concentrate. I saw no reason to play into his victimhood by allowing him out the classroom. He has never had any issues with not being able to concentrate during the first three quarters. None of the others had a problem. The majority of the class was done in ONE DAY as expected. It's not like this was the bar exam. The Victim was just playing the game of 'Who's Really In Charge Here.' And that has to be Mrs. Hillbilly Mom.

I explained that the library was full, and that Mr. Principal does not like people sitting in the hall. To which Client agreed, "Yeah. Mrs. NotACook put ME in the hall, and next thing you know, Mr. Principal saw me on the camera, and called me to the office to see what I did!"

The Victim kept complaining. I told him I was sorry that he couldn't concentrate, but that his arguing was making the other three testees (heh, heh, I said 'testees') unable to concentrate. He had two choices: he could finish his test, or hand it in if he was unable to finish. From there, The Victim started a rant about how I was telling him to give up, and no teacher had ever told him to give up, and maybe he would just quit school altogether. Typical attention-seeking blather. The Victim also asked to talk to Mr. Principal. I told him, "After class." He worked on his test a few minutes. He put it on my desk. He mumbled to the people around him. He took back his test. He mumbled some more. He jumped up and announced, "I'm going to see the Principal!" and walked out. The class oohed. Because you DO NOT walk out of class.

About five minutes later, The Victim returned. "He says I have to work it out with you. Can I sit in the hall?" Again, I told him 'No.' At some schools, this is routine. You can look down the hall and see several kids sitting out in desks. Not here. It is never done. And besides, how do I know that The Victim even went to the office? Nobody notified me. He had no note. The Victim sat down. I continued to read. The Victim stood up, crumpled up his test, and threw it on the floor. I continued reading. The Victim said, "Oh, my God!" Because he was not getting the attention that he entitled himself to. He mumbled to the students around him for the rest of the hour. He did not turn in his test, but picked up the crumpled paper and left it on his desk. I graded it anyway, just to CMA.

The next hour being my plan time, I wrote up a discipline notice with an account of the incident, and mosied up to the office. The secretary told me that Mr. Principal was not in. I asked if The Victim had been there. She said, "Well, he came in looking for Mr. Principal, but he didn't say why. I told him he was in the cafeteria, so he might have gone out there to talk to him." I still don't know if The Victim ever talked to Mr. Principal. I found Mr. Principal in the hall 30 minutes later, and handed him the evidence, since he was talking to someone else at the time. Between classes, the Client came down the hall and said, "The Big Man doesn't look very happy." I said, "Do you know anything about that?" Meaning, the Client has spent his share of time in Mr. Principal's office. The Client said, "I saw him holding a crumpled paper and a write-up slip, so I'm guessing it's The Victim." I did not respond. You can't discuss one student's issues with another student.

The next day, The Victim got called out of the class in the first five minutes. He walked from his desk, away from the door, to look out the window. The Client and the Attorney both said, "You're gonna get it now! You walked out of class." There is no love lost among the three of them. The Vicitm said, "I may just be going home." Which he did.

Seventh hour, The Principal stopped by my room. "The gentleman in question is getting detention. He just happened to leave today before I called him in. Just so you know."

Mrs. Hillbilly Mom WILL be avenged!

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