Thursday, September 06, 2007


The above called out to me from the recycling basket this morning and it kind of says it all. Many thanks to the folks at Willamette Week for putting words in my mouth.

So far, I am not impressed with high school. They've changed schedules on the kids enough times that The Dark Lord has already missed two classes simply because he can't figure out where he is supposed be.

There are no textbooks so far. None. Freshman don't get textbooks when everyone else does so there's been a whole lot of nothing going on in his classes so far. In fact, according to The Dark Lord, he hasn't even learned anything yet and it's been three days already. Hmmmmm......

No lockers. None. The kids have to drag everything around with them all day long. It's just as well he didn't get into the guitar class. Since they do alternating days of block scheduling, they only have to carry 4 classes worth of stuff around but how long will it be before days get mixed up and the wrong books are stuffed in the backpack? Oh wait, I forgot, they don't have books.

They need hall passes to pee. Hall passes. Because of block scheduling, classes are 90 minutes long which I think is great. But a kid is only allowed to pee during class times 5 times a semester after which their grade is affected. Of course they can earn extra points by not using their hall passes. Hmmm...grades or urinary tract infection?

And the real winner: every day everyone is required to read silently for 20 minutes. From freshman to senior, teachers to principal, they all stop what they are doing and read.

According to the guidance counselor:
All students in every class, every day do silent reading from 1:00-1:20. This is an all school policy to encourage and promote reading. It is not for homework time. Teachers are also reading at this time.

Our house is an obstacle course of books, so it's not like I am anti-reading. But we took care of that skill when he was five. Even as lackadaisical homeschoolers, we made sure he could read and he does so given the slightest opportunity.

He can lie around on his bed at home and read. In his pajamas. I can understand silent reading time in elementary school when the skills are still kind of shaky, but in high school? Oy.

And here's the part that worries me: The Dark Lord himself is laughing it all off. Both as a teacher and a parent, I am appalled at the amount of wasted time I'm hearing about but he's shrugging, rolling his eyes, and wandering read!

Nothing for me to do but head down into my craft cave and whip up a quick tote bag for a friend's birthday. You just can't be grumpy working with fabrics covered in marigolds and Day of the Dead calaveras, now can you?

One more gripe: stupid Blogger is having a font freak out so if things look weird, well, they are!


shula said...

That pee thing is disturbing.

Elizabeth said...

Bummer that it's not all that. But it's public school. What can we say? But no lockers? I guess who needs 'em when you don't have any textbooks, eh?

That is killer fabric design!

RedMolly said...

No books for freshmen? Having your grade dropped for peeing too often? Good freakin' heavens.

I concur with Elizabeth. I, too, *heart* the calaveras.

Laura said...

hey there my friend-
just pull that ole boy outta there and hightail it a-way on out here to my house!
I miss you and the way you sew the most lovely things....

Anonymous said...

melisa bear!
i understand it must be weirded out as hecksnabro to have ur oldest chap going out every day, and then after three days, simple not learning much, but indeed, that is normal!
it take the first few days while in shool to get situatide so the teachers know whos the troublemakers who shouldnt be toughter, time so people who get loss can NOt get lost, tim eof kids to settle down to learning after a who 3 months of Wii and myspace, not to mention T.V.
ya, that stuf fabout peeing is odd, my skools dont have rules like that i think, but trust me, you get in the swing of not peeing xcept at lunch, before skool and after skool, cus peeing in the 5 minute passing time when you have to go halfway across teh bloody world to get to ur next class doesnt work... adn i dont knwo about others, but i personaly (i no you were just dying to know this) i cant not bare to ask teachers if i can use the restroom, i mean, you have to raise ur hand and ask to go take a pis, how embarising is that!!! i bet most pple have no modesty about pissing, but its like, i dont want everyone to know i have ta pee, i guess everyon edoes pee, but its my buisness, right? and now i will stop telling you about peeing,.... just tell simon to not drink taht much water... your body adjusts

any way
i send love and hugs and kisses

Susanna said...

i'm sorry that the school experience is being such a drag. I know we were lucky when my third boy decided to go to high school last year. On the one hand I wanted him to see what a waster of time etc it was but I didn't want him to be miserable either. I wasn't terribly impressed with lots of things but overall it wasn't that bad. And yes, he is in grade 12 this year and they also do silent reading for the first part of each grade 12 english class!!!
My son has a locker but the unplanned for 200 extra kids didn't get lockers. My fourth boy is starting grade 10 in the spring at the highschool and he won't get a locker.