Monday, as second period was coming in to class, I got paged down to the office. I got class started and then sent an I/M off to let them know that I had a class and couldn’t just walk out to see why I was needed. An I/M came back informing me that a parent and several students were there and wanted to talk to me. I sent back that my prep period started at 10:50 and that I would be happy to meet with them at that time.
At 10:30 another I/M box popped up on the computer letting me know that they were back and could I come to the office as soon as class was over. Sure, no problem.
It was a student of mine, his mother, his cranky older sister and three or four younger siblings. Cranky teen sister did most of the talking and wanted to know what I had done with the iPod I had taken from her brother in class several weeks ago. I explained that I had brought it to the office and left it with a secretary, as was not only school, but also district, policy. They went on to complain that he had just bought it, paid $200 for it and that they wanted to know where it was. Again, I explained that I had turned it into the office, that there was paperwork logging it in there and that I had checked on it when first asked about it a couple weeks ago. They insisted that it had never made it to the office and implied that I was lying and expected to replace it. “Ah, that’s not going to happen, I did what I was supposed to.” I told them. This had been going on for over ten minutes and I was getting a little frustrated thinking about all the work I should have been doing rather than arguing with cranky older sister. Finally I told them that as soon as the principal was free, we would go into her office and she could see the paperwork that showed I had fulfilled my responsibility.
We went in, the principal showed them the paperwork, and they still weren’t happy. After another five or ten minutes of arguing, the principal finally told them “Mr. Rossi did what he was supposed to, this has nothing more to do with him.” and then let me leave and get back to what I should have been doing. The lesson lost: Instead of pointing out to the student that maybe he shouldn’t be playing with his electronics in class (which, according to the paperwork, had been taken away in another class just 5 days earlier), maybe if he had been paying attention and trying a little he wouldn’t have flunked my class for the last two years. Not to mention the fact that she pulled all her kids out of school for the day to traipse around complaining about something that, again by district policy, isn’t even supposed to be at school.
I talked to the principal later and she told me that she heard cranky older sister tell my student “Don’t ever give any electronics to Mr. Rossi or the principal again, they’ll probably just steal it and you won’t get it back.” Fine by me, the vice-principal agreed that if this student is caught with anything again, instead of trying to confiscate it, I’m just going to bring him down to the vice-principal’s office. Problem solved.
I don’t know if it’s over yet, they have threatened to take it to the district. But I’m not going to worry, I did what I was supposed to, the paperwork is there to prove that and the principal, vice-principal and school cop all have seen it.
Thank you for listening. I feel much better now.