I’ve had a major case of the Monday morning blahs today. I just couldn’t seem to get my motivation going. I stayed in bed until the last possible second, hoping that maybe having to rush around might help get me started, but it didn’t. Mondays have to be the absolute worst day of the week. It seems like the weekend just gets started, then WHAM! it’s Monday again. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do, so it isn’t my job, it’s just that I love my free time more! My ideal weekend would be three days long every week, then Tuesday would be my Monday, but I’d be one day closer to the weekend.
So there I was, feeling rather bummed, driving to work when it hit’s me, I’ve got to cover in-house suspension today! I was hoping that once I was in my office and getting down to business, my attitude might improve a bit. Remembering in-house just brought me down even further. In-house suspension is nothing more than an extremely painful day long babysitting session. My blahs were becoming a major case of the blues.
When I arrived at work things turned from bad to worse. The eight students on in-house were, how can I say this nicely, not your best students, not even close, but then they weren’t the worst of the worse either, probably more like the best of the worst. They had earned a day of detention for discipline or attendance issues, and were certainly going to be a challenge. Long story short, it was a very, very long day. Thankfully I was assisted by one of the other counselors for much of the day or it could have been a lot worse. Oh, a few of them worked on pushing my buttons and tried my patience to no end, but I survived even with my blahs hanging with me for most of the day.
I tell you, the longer I spent with these kids the bluer I became. As the day passed I really began feeling sorry for them. Several of them were loud mouthed and rude, the others just pathetic followers and goof-offs. I tried talking with them, but they weren’t interested. I began to realize I l was looking at some potential non-grads, perhaps five of the eight. I had reviewed their transcripts while watching them and what I found wasn’t good. One 10th grade student had 28 of 90 possible credits earned. Another had 40 of 90. One 11th grader had 90 of 150 possible. All three students a year behind. Two others were at least 30 credits behind. Even with summer school and Adult Ed, I doubt they will ever catch up.
The sad truth is they simply don’t care. Their view of the future is tainted and twisted. As one boy put it, “I’m wasting my time in school, I just don’t want to be here. I could be working,” When I asked him what he expect to earn, he said $50 an hour. “Not without an education,” I answered, but he assured me he was going to do it as soon as he could quit school. He told me he could drive a trash truck and make more money than a teacher, I don’t know, maybe he could. Nearly all the students had a false sense of the future and decried having to be in school. It was really sad. These kids are just getting started and have all ready given up. Not only are their grades bad, but their attendance is spotty and their tardies are through the roof! They need direction and lots of encouragement, much more than we can offer in the Guidance Office. What they need begins at home and it definitely not happening. More to be blue about.
And where are the parents? Why aren’t they all over their kids, encouraging them to get their education? Why aren’t they working with them, nurturing them like good parents are supposed to? Good question. Wish I knew the answer. To be successful students need the full support of parents and schools. Schools can’t do it alone, and shouldn’t be expected to.
Just a Thought