Inspired by this thread, I’d like to rant about one of my students.
This girl, B (not her real initial ), has always been a talker in class. Incessantly talking. I-tell-her-to-be-quiet-and-she-rolls-her-eyes-because-I’m-intruding-on-her-space kind of talker. I’ve called her parents numerous times, but it never helps.
Just after Thanksgiving, she was gone for the week after. Not unusual; I’ve had several kids with week-long. But when it went into a second week, I was concerned. I checked with our attendance office to see if the parents had called in, and found out she’d been in school all those days; she was just skipping my class. I wrote up an unlawful absence notice, called her mother, and lo-and-behold, she returned. She was somewhat abashed, and actually behaved (mostly) for about a month.
(If a student has two unlawful absences in our school district, they cannot be given more than a 59%; i.e., they flunk. Three class tardies also equal one unlawful absence.)
I had generously offered to let her make up the tests she’d missed. She took one, but hadn’t taken the second by the last day of the quarter, a Friday. That day, she was out. I submitted my grades with a zero for that test.
Then on Monday, she was back. She gave me an admit slip which was given an “02” code: sick leave. I thought (briefly) that I’d have to give her the test and amend the grades I’d submitted. But then I heard her talking about going to a coastal town on Friday. I asked her, “You were sick in Seaside City [not its real name ]?”
“Oh, my mother wrote me a sick note so that it’d be excused,” she replied to me. Stupid girl! I’m not your buddy; don’t tell any school official about your misdeeds. I, of course, was obligated to report to the attendance office the nature of the “sick” note, which unlawful-ized her absence. And not just for my class, but for all her classes. I imaging that caused her not to just flunk my class, but maybe another one or two.
She came up to me steamed a few days later, stating that it wasn’t my business to tell the attendance office that information. I told her that it was exactly my duty. Then she tried to dismiss what I’d heard, saying that I’d misheard it, and that I’d been listening in on her “private” conversation. I reminded her that I’d asked her directly, and she responded.