An Immodest Proposal


            Whatever happened to the immodest proposal that teachers be permitted to expel unruly students without the imprimatur of the already-beleaguered principal?  From the floor of the classroom a bloodied and bandaged geometry teacher with his shaky fist raised in a power-to-the-people gesture and an English teacher whose nerves are shot from three cups of oil-thick, Colombian El Guapo per period and a rib-cracked Algebra teacher who barely survived the conference with the rhino father and the Medea mother–all vote : yes! Let’s throw Sam Surly out!

            Saner heads, however, are not so jubilant. Consider this prospect: an average day in the Max Sennett Institute for Advanced Pie Throwing,  your public high school.  Mrs. Schlotsky is handing out yet another third grade work sheet on Huckleberry Finn to her ever-alert-to-racial-slurs juniors, many of whom can’t read the slurs.  Now here’s Herbert.  What you gon’ do about him?  He don’ wanna. He ain’t gonna. You can kiss my lackawanna and who is this Finnish dude, anyway?  Ain’t they all communiss’?  Mrs. Schlotsky removes the grumbling, heads-down, screw-you Herbert.  Power to Mrs. Schlotsky!  She feels a rush!  Finally, she can control her class!  Finally, they will respect her! 

            Now, Herbert may or may not decide to pimp-walk his way across campus to where detention/in-house/rehab is being staged in thick clouds of vaporized testosterone mingled with the ever-present odor of cigarette smoke.  But let’s assume he does go.  Let’s assume he actually doesn’t slip out the side door and let’s assume–if teachers are permitted to control their classes–what he will find: every teacher in a school of fifteen hundred has thrown out three Herbert’s.  There are fifty classes meeting this period.  Ergo: one hundred fifty Herbert’s who ain’t gonna, who don’ wanna, and you can kiss my lackawanna.  And one shy, self-effacing para-pro to baby sit.  Herbert envisions chaos and is pleased.  His tattoos grin and his tongue ball tingles. 

            But not to fear.  The WWW-obsessed, SUV-wheeling dads and their cause-clutching housewives flood the BOE with protests.  How dare that Black Hole of Calcutta that calls itself a school  incarcerate so many helpless innocent children in one room!  Punitive piranhas!  Cretaceous cretins!  Solution?  The teachers!  The teachers are conscripted,  ever loyal, ever powerless.  That silly planning period is a waste of valuable instructional time, n’est pas?  Now, Mrs. Schlotsky, you’re a professional (Translate: no sass, b—–).  Here’s a technique validated by reems of useless ed. research to make maximum use of that planning period: monitoring Herbert’s simian grunts and garbled obscenities!  Forget organizing your lessons.  Forget a few moments of sanity from the Magical Mystery Tour known as teaching.  Thus, Mrs.Schlotsky gains a new sense of freedom only to find she has lost her planning period to baby sit one-hundred-fifty Herbert’s.

            Select teachers will be asked to cut short their lunch periods as well, giving them five minutes instead of ten.

Vanessa  Bishop


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