A Teacher's Day

The day in the life of an inner city large urban school district teacher after the high stakes testing ends and there is still three more months left before summer vacation.

Location: Chicago, Illinois, United States

I have taught school for over thirty years always in the inner city and for the most part always upper grade students. I have two children and I have been married for twenty years.

Friday, May 18, 2007

201st Blog--Part 2

It took the security officer and me maybe a minute or so to break up this fight. Security threw the offending child over his shoulder and dragged him downstairs. The other boy—my student—shook it off and walked to the library (the opposite direction) with the help of an aide.

The police were called.

The offender was handcuffed when they arrived and the rest of my day was spent in the office where I was asked if I wanted to press charges, but never given the opportunity.

When the offender’s mother showed up, she was hysterical—or at least that’s how it appeared. She was shaking and crying and she had to be supported by two other adults.

When the police decided not to arrest her son—two hours later, and I was not allowed into this conversation—suddenly she was a new woman. Smiling. No more tears, no shaking, a light flip in her step.

Yeah, right.

I’ve seen acting before and I guess I will again.

This is how it goes.

Before the day was over, I found myself between three more incidents. Students kept on coming to the office sent by their teachers from 1:30 until the end of the day.

“I’m here cause I don’t want to fight.”

“I’ll kill her. Let me loose.”

“OK, so I cursed out the sub. What’s the big deal?”

Etc. Etc. Etc.

In the end, the offender in my fight earned a three day suspension. One of my students had a tantrum in front of the assistant principal and she earned herself a day. Another student from another class would not stop—she earned herself five days.

A seventh grader who thought he could get in a sub’s face ended up with a parent conference.

Grand Central Station at the office.

I was asked to go to 106 and help with the dismissal because they were so out of control—and they were, but they left the building without any real problems.
OK. Now it’s time to go home and I’m geared and ready with both security officers for a flurry of fights—but, just as the classes begin to dismiss, a baby in her mother’s arms reaches out to the fire alarm and—yes, you guessed it—pulls it bringing in three fire trucks.

No problem at dismissal. Every teacher is outside.

And then it began to drizzle.

Tomorrow—or Monday: Part 3.



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