Tuesday morning I'm walking through guidance after picking up my mail and I run into Mrs. Squirrel and wish her good morning.
"Oh good morning," she says brightly. "I'm so glad to see you. Has anyone mentioned that I'll need your help on Thursday and Friday?"
"Uh, no," I say wondering what kind of help she's talking about.
"Well, The Principal and The Enforcer have to be out at a conference and with Friday being 8th grade field day, I'm afraid that we need someone else acting as administrator just in case things get crazy and they lose their minds."
"Oh, sure," I say because, well, what else do you say to that?
"Oh that's fantastic!" she says. "We'll get your classes covered and you can help me out."
On Wednesday, The Enforcer went through the stack of referrals sitting on his desk to fill me in on what their status was, gave me his super secret computer passwords, and left his cell number just in case. This morning, after going over my lessons with the aide who was going to cover my classes, I moved into The Enforcer's office for the day and started pounding out referrals.
Oh. Good. Gracious.
Due to The Very Big Deal Government Mandated Tests, referrals had not been worked for a week. We close ISS during that week as the ISS teacher spends her time administering make-up tests. We also don't suspend kids because it's too important to have them here taking their tests. The result was a huge pile of referrals.
Which I got through.
Then went to guidance and discovered a stack twice as high and more rolling in.
Mrs. Squirrel spent her morning in the office with a hysterical parent (girl drama in the form of two best friends who got into a cat fight yesterday), so I didn't even see her for a few hours.
I spent my time calling kids, counseling kids, handing out discipline, filling out paperwork, calling parents, and although my "done" pile was growing, my "to do" didn't seem to get smaller.
What was strange is I was starting to see kids who had brand new, never been used, discipline files. Kids who had made it nearly all the way through school all year but, for whatever reason, were starting to lose it. I had a friend once tell me that this time of year in middle school was like a long road trip with a bunch of kids in a station wagon. They all like each other for the most part, but after a while, they're just sick and tired of each other and even the good kids do things they shouldn't. Especially on the bus. Good gracious, I had more bus incident reports than anyone should ever see floating across a desk!
It wasn't all bad, however. I got to get after two sixth graders who were caught kissing in the hallway. The boy informed me, before he even sat down, that "I'm through with girls for the rest of the year!" I suggested he make that until he was 30 and he agreed.
We'll see how long that vow lasts!