Mr. and Mrs. Stone, I Don’t Quite Know How to Tell You This, but All the Other Kids Hate Tommy and, Frankly, I Do Too
by Jordy Greenblatt
Please, have a seat. As a second grade teacher, I deal with a lot of behavioral issues and, needless to say, this is not my first parent/teacher conference of the year. I’ve seen kids stealing each other’s backpacks, cursing at teachers, putting garbage in cubbies, throwing toys, pulling hair, and even once peeing on the playground. But never in my thirty some odd years of teaching have I met a kid quite as shitty as yours.
It’s not that he acts out or gets into fights. It’s more just that the other kids find it difficult to listen to his stupid voice for five seconds straight. And you know what? If I weren’t legally obligated to care for your child, I wouldn’t go near him. But since I’m not allowed to kick him out of my classroom for being himself, I spend story time every day telling the class about a stupid, ugly monster named Tommy until they make the connection on their own.
This must be upsetting to hear, but I doubt it comes as a complete surprise. I mean, you guys have to see him drag his gross body around and listen to him talk about shit every single day. At least I get to go blow off steam after work by gossiping about him with other teachers and sending the kids photoshopped images of Tommy slithering out of an elephant’s butt covered in poop.
I have a few ideas for potential solutions. The simplest one is probably to get him to be completely silent and wear a paper bag over his head during school so that the students and I can pretend he’s not there. That way they can learn without being so preoccupied with their disdain for his entire being. Admittedly, even knowing that he’s in the room will make their and my skin crawl, but it’s a big step in the right direction.
Of course, my ideal solution would be to have you remove him from my classroom permanently so I never, ever have to hear his noxious, chirpy little voice or see his idiot, assclown-y face again. But, like I say to my students every day before they go home, “You don’t always get what you want even if you try your hardest. Sometimes you’re stuck with a piece of shit like Tommy.”