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Silly Conversations with My Principal

January 21, 2016

Those of you that follow me on social media have already seen these.  I decided to collect them together in one post.  There may be more coming…

Education reformers have a number of villains whom they blame for the problems of public education.  Incompetent teachers, poor parenting skills, weak politicians.  What is never discussed is the lack of educational leadership.  Anyone who works in schools, however, knows this is a major issue.  Yet the reformers seldom mention it.  I think it never even occurs to them that leadership might be part of the problem. Perhaps because they are all leaders of various corporations themselves?

While the two dialogues that follow are not to be interpreted as indictments, they do suggest the problem in epitome.  Next time, I will share a far more worrisome story about my current superintendent.

Conversation #1:

My principal calls during class:

Him: Hi, it’s (His Name). How are you doing?

Me: (somewhat irritable, because I’m trying to teach my class): Fine. What’s up?

Him: Was (Name of Student) in class this morning?

Me: No.

Him: She wasn’t?

Me: No.

Him: Did you mark her absent?

Me: No, because–

Him: Well, it’s very important that you keep your attendance records accurate, and take attendance as soon as possible. It makes it much easier for us to know when a student isn’t in class, and to figure out why. Why didn’t you mark her absent?

Me: She withdrew two weeks ago. That’s also the reason she wasn’t in class.

(Excruciatingly long pause…)

Him: Oh. Right. Right. Um, Ok. Ok. Thanks.

(He hangs up.)

Principal

A slight exaggeration, perhaps…

Conversation #2

Another call to my classroom while teaching…

Him: Hi, it’s (His Name). How are you?

Me: (Even more irritated this time) Fine. What do you need?

Him: Could you send Mason up to see me?

Me: No, I can’t.

Him: Why not?

Me: I don’t have a Mason in my class.

Him: You don’t?

Me: No, I don’t.

Him: Are you sure?

Me: Yes, I’m sure.

Him: I wonder where he is…

Me: I don’t know. Maybe he’s off mixing cement somewhere.

Him: Mixing cement? Why would he be mixing cement?

Me: I can’t tell you unless you show me you know the secret handshake.

Him: Handshake? What handshake? What are you talking about?

Me: Never mind. He’s not here. Don’t know where he is.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Lucy Simard permalink
    January 21, 2016 4:52 am

    Bonsoir, Kevin! Comment ca va? Keep these posts coming as I needed a good laugh and a reminder of what I DON’T miss! 😱 I hope the new year is off to a good start for you! How are things going with the new super? I heard from several people that things at Lyman continue to be challenging. That is too bad and it does make me sad because I did love my years there.

    Have a good day! Hugs from Luce

    Sent from my iPad

    >

  2. March 30, 2016 5:23 pm

    You definitely made my day with this post! I think you could sell a BOOK filled only with Silly Conversations With My Administrator. THANKS!

  3. April 20, 2016 2:53 pm

    Glad you liked the post! Sadly, I think you are right…

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