60. PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE week #6, R.C. pts. IV and V, UNBELIEVABLE! & YOUR FAQ’S

MEMO TO “KATHY”: Thanks for the kind note -It sure contrasts with a message TWP got earlier this week. As to Miranda and the “goth culture”, please do understand that the way Miranda dressed had NO bearing on her punishment. She was in my office for behavior problems MORE than any other student this year! The paddling was the last option before O.S.S. and likely placement in the alternative school. I (Renee) hope to turn around Miranda and perhaps -Keep her from being a school dropout statistic.

MEMO TO “AMERICAN WAY”: Hey, what took you so long? You FINALLY figured out that we are all “southern belles”! What tipped you off? (Giggle Giggle)

MEMO TO “Prof. N”: We got your comments and they will be posted next week with our response.

PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE week #6

Rather than the day by day format, this segment will focus on Miranda, a former star roll student of mine. That was back at the elementary school where I taught before becoming an intern assistant principal at my county’s middle school. Since nothing else nothworthy happened this past week, I will recount was has occurred with Miranda -Post paddling.

Afterschool Study: In order to separate Miranda from what her mom and I feel is “bad company”, Miranda is “parking it” at a secretary’s desk in the front office after school to do her homework. (I do not leave work until at least 5:30 p.m. so Miranda will have plenty of time to boost her borderline grades) Her mom will pick her up to take her home before going to the 2nd source of income/rent/food. I certainly hope Miranda takes a good look at her own future because the alternatives her mom deals with daily are unpleasant.

New Focus: As I mentioned last week, I have the discretion -as sponsor- to fill one vacancy on the student council. And guess who that will be. That’s right! Miranda just isn’t going to have time for her old “questionable” friends. Well, she was ill at ease at first as well as shy. But the day after I paddled her, Miranda came to school looking like the Miranda I once knew w/o the goth clothes and make-up. She actually looked pretty and a few boys seemed to notice too! As to the student council meeting on Wednesday of this week, Miranda seemed to avoid looking towards me and tried to slip out without seeing me. I caught up to her and confided,”Hey, Miranda…I wish to forget about last week, o.k.?…Let us ‘push the reset button’…o.k.?” When Miranda shrugged and then broke a little smile, I reassured her,”Miranda, no one is going to know about last week…I promise you!…And just so you know, I hate that part of my job!” Miranda indicated to me that she understood and just hoped I wouldn’t hold what happened against her. I replied,”We ‘pushed the reset button’, didn’t we?” “Yeah, I guess…,” Miranda answered. And that was that. Since the paddling the week before, there have been NO Miranda mishaps and some teachers have asked about the “Miranda Miracle.”

The Future: It is still too early to tell but Miranda seems to be “turning a new leaf”. I certainly hope so. From this point forward, the future is in Miranda’s hands. She is a very smart young lady and has a bright future ahead of her. I’ll keep readers posted as to any new developments on Miranda.

RENEE CHRONICLES pt. IV

Church and State

This abbreviated segment deals with a side of me that is personal to me -My spiritual side. My intent, as with the entire chronicle series, is just to show who I really am by highlighting the experiences that shaped my life. Faith was one such experience.

Church attendance was a given in my growing up years as far back as I can recall. To me, church was a positive place and I will never understand some people’s negative attitudes towards my Faith -The Christian Faith. As a child acolyte, it was my role to light and extinguish the alter candles at the opening and closing of each worship service. I learned at a young age what the Christian Faith meant and that has been a constant in my life ever since. Looking towards the crucifix (Although my church isn’t catholic, the sanctuary did have the crucifix) one Sunday morning, something “clicked” and I decided “Hey, if Jesus was willing to suffer and die on the cross for me -He can count me IN!” And I’ve never looked back.

Mom and Dad were genuine “salt of the earth” folks who were devout also but were never pushy about it with others or us. But they did believe that parents are the boss and families are not intended to be democracies. In my youth, if the Christian Faith was the Church, Mom and Dad were the State. While not big into “spare the rod, spoil the child” theology -There were limits and consequences as to behavior.

Overall, my youth experiences as to the balance of “Church and State” in my family was positive. As a parent myself, I strive to do likewise with Tyler, my son. Its a lot tougher than I ever imagined!

 

RENEE CHRONICLES pt. V

Church and State Collide

In this segment, I am recalling the one time that the Church part of my youth overlapped with my Family. That is, when my two worlds intersected and resulted in a “collision.” And it all started with my best friend who, in this recollection, I will call Angie.

Angie was a girl just a few houses up the street from mine where my folks moved to when I was 5 years old. She was the first kid in the neighborhood to welcome me and we became best friends all the way through high school “double dating.” We were inseparable and best of all -She went to the same church with her divorcee mom that my family would attend. However, there was a downside: Angie’s mom was what my mom referred to as a Ben Spock disciple. In other words -No rules! Please understand, my parents were NOT overbearing or superstrict but did have basic expectations of my siblings and me. Simply put: Be neat, courteous to everyone and RESPECTFUL to adults in authority. (More on the latter in a future post)

My folks were NOT uptight about religion or church but there was an unsaid code in our family that the sanctuary was a place of reverence -No joking around. But Angie was a “free spirit” in every sense of the word. In our children’s class, Angie would whisper the funniest things in my ear when the old lady teacher (Nearly deaf) would turn her back. Sometimes, it was all I could do to cover my face in my hands to keep from cracking up! (Hey, think KARMA -I got paid back plus interest when I started my public school teaching career!)

Well, my folks were aware of Angie’s ways but never caught wind about me in Sunday school. (Whew!) But church service was another matter. I was the shy one when we were both acolytes. Angie would zip through the lighting of alter candles on her side and with a smirk, be waiting on me before we sat together on the opposite side of the alter from where the pastor sat. There, it was my “job” to elbow Angie so she wouldn’t doze off during the service. But that was not my biggest problem during one service.

To this day, I do not remember what Angie whispered in my ear but I totally LOST it! The giggle outburst came during the Gospel Reading and was about something else but everyone -including my mortified mother and p o ed father- looked straight at me!
It seemed a LONG time for the end of the service and a LONGER ride home.

The collision you ask? Think thunder and lightning…The thunder of Daddy’s baritone voice, “Renee, you are GROUNDED for a week and WILL write a letter of apology to Pastor …. TODAY!” And the lightening? That was the collision between Daddy’s hymn book (2″ thick) and my rear end as I scurried up the stairs.

Suffice to say, Angie and I did NOT ever pair again as acolytes and my own behavior was much improved overall after that episode. Fun is fun and Angie and I had a lot of good times growing up together. But some things require a degree of reverence and a church sanctuary is one of them. It really bothers me when adults -much less children- have a cavalier attitude towards a church’s sanctuary. When my Tyler gets old enough to be an acolyte -I’ll be on the lookout for “dubious” pairings!

 

UNBELIEVABLE!

The following was received this week by TEACHERSWHOPADDLE Weblog. What is shown below is just a sample of the horrific practices of 30 to 40 years ago. All of us at TWP totally condemn the actions of so called educators while at the same time advocating a middle of the road approach to the issue of c.p.

I ran across your blog quite by accident. I can’t say that I agree with the use of CP as you use it for any infraction. The basis for my statement is personal experience.

The paddling happened in 9th grade during gym class while we were learning volleyball. The two teams in gym class got a little banter going which resulted in name calling and turned the game of volleyball into a dodgeball match. Our gym teacher had everyone go to the locker room and told us to get changed. While we were changing he came into the locker room and told all the boys to line up and that we were going to receive two licks. Many of us were just in our jockstraps. Remember back in the 70’s they were required for PE. In effect we had nothing protecting our bottoms. He gave us our two licks and they hurt bad. Some kids had blue marks others were just red. The physical affect the paddle will have on kids varies. Some will bruise others will not using the same force. There was no hiding what everyone’s behind looked like. Today this would be a scene in some fetish film. It happened for real in Cleveland. One of the parents was very upset and the issue went to law enforcement. As it turns out under Ohio law one layer of clothing was required before a paddling could be given. A jockstrap was considered one layer of clothing. The sad thing is these things should never have happened. They did nothing to help education and just taught us its ok to hit someone if you can’t get them to do what you want and its ok to hurt innocent people if you get the guys you want in the process. CP should be banned period. Luckily in my state now it is.

John, please accept TWP’s heartfelt empathy for what happened to you. TWP’s contributors have been educated as to the depths of the anger and resentment that some have about c.p. NO WONDER! The drive by the abolitionists stems from the horrors of what was recounted above. Let TWP underline this: In NO way does this blog condone or support in any way what occurred above -That was ABUSE, nothing more…nothing less.

YOUR FAQ’S

Why do you expose the humiliating and degrading stories on the Internet about the paddlings you administer?

We at TWP decided last year that the best way to demonstrate how c.p. should be administered is to recount our own experiences. Of course, for the absolutist, nothing short of a total ban is acceptable. It has never been our goal to “brag” or “boast” about the FEW times we resorted to the paddle. After all, one must ask,” If these teachers ‘enjoy’ paddling their students so much, then why do they paddle so rarely?” The answer is clear in the numbers -All four of us used the paddle 7 times ALL LAST YEAR out of a total of 100 +/- students. That fact should destroy the lie that we ‘enjoy’ paddling our students because if we did, we would be swinging the timber a lot more!

Are the names of your students real?

Of course not! All names, including our own, are psuedo-names. We do this to protect the privacy of our students as well as our own. TWP will always abide by that policy for as long as we publish this blog.

Why can’t you be proud enough tell your readers who you really are? What state are you in? What school do you teach at? What is the name of your ISD?

This was extracted from a commentator above. The reason: There are some strange and weird people out there and three of us are moms ourselves. That alone should be enough. And if not, here’s more: At a staff meeting last year, we heard that someone has been calling HUNDREDS of elementary schools across the south asking about young female teachers! Creepy! Said person better watch out -Phone calls CAN be traced!

 

COMING NEXT: PRINCIPAL’S OFFICE week #7,

TEACHER FEATURE: JENNY and WENDY

(AUBURN DUO),

&

Prof. N’s COMMENTARY/TWP’S RESPONSE

 

 


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