Seriously. It's been one of those days... Let me rephrase--my day was great until I was on my way home. My phone rang with the familiar 720-886 prefix. The next four digits that follow just determine the classroom phone number that the call's coming from. The moment I see those first seven numbers I always cringe just a bit. Could this be the ONE day that the phone call I'm about to answer is something positive? Yeah, right...not going to happen.
I work in a building where we, as teachers, are encouraged to make positive phone calls and write positive referrals. This year alone, I've already made a plethora of phone calls and about 20 or so positive referrals. This isn't an unknown practice. I'm waiting for the day to be the recipient of such an honor. As a matter of fact, the only time this ever happened was when my son was in my school, in the grade I teach, and in my class. I left myself a message.
So today, as I answer the phone with an upbeat voice with the hopes of hearing something positive about my wonderful children, the bomb drops. Marissa was getting a referral. This would be for showing up to biology and then ditching when the class went to the lab. "What?" I asked in confusion. Marissa's not the type of kid that ditches class. Mostly because she has four parents that hold her accountable and she enjoys having a cell phone, iPod, and computer access. "Yes," the teacher told me and without further ado the conversation was over.
Immediately, of course, I called Marissa's dad. The two of us are SO tired of the kids' poor behavior. The nerve! The gall! Such bullshit. Just one week without any type of poor behavior or drama would be greatly appreciated. Maybe that's what I should ask Santa for... We decide on the punishment--one month without any electronics at all. That is her motivation--she loves technology. As we finish on deciding what the punishment will be, Marissa was approaching his car. Soon I'm on speaker phone (it's her dad's week) asking Marissa what happened and why on earth would she ditch a class. "Mom, I was there," she begins, "There was one sub in the classroom who told us we'd be going to the lab where there'd be another sub. I asked her if I could go to the bathroom and she said yes. When I got back to the classroom everyone was gone, so I went to the lab. Mr. Brown (not his real name) was the sub in the lab. We did a web quest. I have the homework in my backpack." Ugh. I call the teacher back, relate the story back to her--all the time wondering how she'd know the teacher's name, know the assignment, and have the homework if she wasn't really there.
Fortunately the teacher agrees with me and will get the work from Marissa tomorrow--also agreeing not to write her up if she's able to show her the homework to prove she was really there. Seriously.
So that's what Marissa will do tomorrow. In the meantime, I'll be waiting by my phone with hopes of one day receiving a positive phone call about my wonderful children. If only just one of their teachers could see the great, diligent, kind, loving kids that I see in them every day.