Wednesday, March 21, 2007
Report card day has arrived. Kids are being forced to face reality. No one can pass a class without passing exams. No one can pass without doing classwork. No one can pass if they don't do homework. No one can pass if they are not in school. No amount of "I'm sorry" or "I promise to do better" can help. Threats don't work either. One kid actually told me that since he didn't pass, he wasn't going to come to class anymore. (This was from a kid that begged his guidance counselor to get him into my class.) I said, that is fine with me. I now have one less test paper to grade and one less student to yell at for arriving late. Too bad, he didn't mean the threat. I know he will be back tomorrow. HE ALWAYS COMES BACK!
I had to fail one of my students for excessive absence. She gave me all kinds of excuses, begged and pleaded to be passed. I wouldn't bend. What did she do? Took off the next day to spite me! She came back today. We reviewed for tomorrow's exam. She sat and played with her side kick, refusing to stop, no matter how many times I told her to put it away. Another boarder line student got a 20 on a take-home quiz. He didn't pass either.
I lowered a student's grades for poor homework and classwork and for being generally disruptive. Instead of being apologetic and trying to do the right thing, he walked around the room and asked everyone if he was keeping them from learning, wasting almost 5 minutes of class time. A bright kid, but he doesn't get it. We went over the do now which consisted of 5 regents questions 10 minutes into the period. I asked one kid why he didn't do any of them? His answer, "I just got settled in."
Tomorrow is parent teacher conference. I know some of them are worried about what I will say to their parents. These are not stupid kids. Instead of worrying, they should be smart enough to do the right thing.