Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Ultimate Medical Note

You really have to tread carefully in schools these days. I remember I was teaching some year 10s at Bexleyheath last year, when one of the girls noticed my wedding ring and asked if I was married. I said that I was.

"Do you have kids?" she asked. Now this kind of put a dampener on my young soul, so I responded accordingly.

"Ayyyy," I said with a Fonzie-esque frown (complemented with inward-pointing thumbs), "Do I look like I have kids?"

"What", she said with a shrug, "I have a kid."

Oh. Now words couldn't really convey my surprise at this revelation, though I think my prolonged nodding with raised eye-brows did. I followed this with a belated, "OK", then with some more nodding, as if she had just told me her favourite colour was green. (And? So? I'm cool with that.)

She went on to show me a picture of him from her wallet, along with some booties she had bought him the day before. "OK," I said for the ninth time.

Now after this short exchange, I was feeling pleased that I had negotiated a mine field without the loss of too many limbs, when all of a sudden some kid piped-up and said, "Sir, don't you think that's crazy? She's got a baby, and she's just turned 15! That's crazy isn't?"

You ask me a pointed question? Aaarrggh, you fool! Of course, the only way to counter a pointed question is to provide a completely irrelevant answer. I think I said something like, "Your hair is crazy." Nice one.

Anyway, I was just reminded of this story again today, when I was teaching some year 10s at another school. One of the girls got up from her seat and asked if she could go to the toilet.

"Not unless you have a medical note from your parents," I replied, as is the school's policy for every student (and thank goodness, because seriously, I must get 20 requests per lesson).

"Sir, can't you see she's pregnant!" shouted out one of the kids. I looked down, and indeed she was.

Ah, the note that needs no parent's signature (nor any parental supervision).


Aaron Lewis said...

I need to get one of those notes... are they only good at schools?

Helen | Pepperina Press said...

"Your hair is crazy" -- I'm going to add this to my arsenal for future use.

You'd think I would've come across similar situations in southern Mississippi, wouldn't you? But no. It's just you, Jules.

Anonymous said...

That is one of the funniest stories I have ever read! I truly cannot stop laughing. Poor Jules!