Tomorrow is it……………..THE LAST DAY OF THE SCHOOL YEAR for my students! And ya know what……………I can’t wait! I love my students. They are great kids! They work hard and are genuinely nice kids. (Most of them!) However, we’re having a slight “problem” at our school right now….and this afternoon was the PERFECT example of what’s been happening the past few years.
I had to “supervise” a portion of the kids who stayed back from the 8th grade Valleyfair trip today during 7th hour. I was pretty excited to do this as the other supervisors during the day had to actually plan something to do with these kids, but 7th hour supervisors only had to escort them to the cafeteria for an ice cream treat…and then over to the gym to play basketball. Not too hard…
My group was fairly small, as most kids who opted to NOT go on the field trip stayed home today. Those who came had different activities planned for them throughout the day. I only had 4 of 5 kids in my group (as opposed to the 40 that were on my attendance list….just to give you a picture of how many kids stayed home.) During 7th hour, the three total groups merged into one “big” group for ice cream and basketball.
Man…..these kids are in 8th grade. Most of the kids we had were African-American. I’d say we had approximately 5 Caucasian kids and 30 African American kids. We had the ice cream and headed into the gym. This is when all hell broke loose!
In my experience, the loudest noise in a middle school at any given time is the shrill scream of an African-American 8th grade girl trying to get her friend’s attention down the hallway. Yikes! It’s deafening! We had 8 African-American girls shrieking at each other for what reason, we never figured out. We had one of these students come up and ask us for jump ropes and since none of us were Phy Ed teachers, we don’t have keys for the equipment rooms, we told her to stick to basketball. She turned and walked out of the gym to go get the jump ropes. HELLO?!?!?!?!? Did ya not just hear us? We don’t have keys! She didn’t care. She wanted it and was going to get one. Who were we to stop her?
One of us followed her and told her that she couldn’t go get them and reiterated the fact that we didn’t have keys…..a nice explanation…..turned into an eye-rolling, attitude-driven Jerry Springer-like show from this girl.
Then one of the kids slams a ball across the gym and FLIES out of the door, slamming it behind him. Another student comes walking across the gym towards us just shaking and almost in tears. I went around and figured that the student who left would cut across through the cafeteria, so I went to go meet up with him while one of my colleagues tried to figure out what happened with the other student. Turns out, one kid didn’t want to play any more, and the other kid got mad and stormed out of the gym………he was HOT! What a temper! We let him cool off for awhile and the other kid couldn’t so we escorted him down to the office.
As all of this is happening…a group of students is swarming together in the middle of the gym….all African American. We suddenly hear 2 or 3 F-BOMBS come out from the group…….no idea who said them. The kids were all riled up. We were trying to collect the balls and dismiss the kids on time for their busses. We let all the kids go except the group that had congregated in the middle of the gym. Then, all of a sudden, we are being called racist and whatnot because these students all happen to be black. Excuse, me? You let the F word go…………multiple times. You’re not leaving. If I could tell who said it, that person would be leaving….right down to the office!
This is a frickin’ daily occurrence at our school. Teachers are shown NO RESPECT. Kids don’t move out of our way if we’re coming down the hall with a pile of papers/books. We get slammed into lockers if we choose to walk the halls with the kids….which is more like you just shuffle down the hall moving with the group. (When I was VERY pregnant with Punky, I was pushed into a locker several times in one day as I tried to maneuver through the hallways! Hello…..a very pregnant OVERDUE teacher is not small….it’s not like they didn’t see me!) Anytime we reprimand a black kid, we’re called racist. Anytime you ask a student to walk, they ignore you as they run past you down the hall…….. You can ask a student to see their pass, and you get a bunch of lip from them. Kids don’t do their work. They shut down about mid-April. They don’t care. They don’t have to care….and they wanna know what are we going to do about it?
I am on a committee to look at the climate of our building over the summer. Again, this is not ALL kids! We have GREAT kids in our building……but then we also have the kids who just don’t give a shit about anything anymore……….and unfortunately, these kids are who we have to exert our energy on…….because if we don’t then chaos occurs and all hell breaks loose!
I just need to vent………….if these kids are acting like this in 8th grade, what the hell will they be like in years to come?
What the heck happened to genuine courtesy? Respect for yourself? Respect for your peers? Respect for adults? Man……the world is in trouble……………………