Monday, September 24, 2007

When Good Kids Go Bad...or the Tale of Pout Boy

We have a kid on our team I'll call Pout Boy. He's a good kid, from a very solid, good family with parents who care and who want the best for him. He's very capable of being a solid B student, if not better, and is usually pleasant and respectful.


Pout Boy wants to be bad. Pout Boy, within minutes of arriving at school on the first day, gravitated towards the kids on our team who are not, even in the best of times, good influences. He wants to hang out with the kids who are on the road (if they aren't there already) to careers in gang-banging. His idols are the kids who are non-academically promoted, kids who end up in alternative school, and kids who find themselves expelled.

So, he hasn't been doing homework, for anyone, isn't studying for tests, and basically is failing this grading period. He and his buddies are also tardy to classes (by quite a lot, which prompted us to have the SRO do a cruise of the boy's bathrooms to make sure they weren't up to some mischief.) All of which prompted Dad to come visit Friday (without Pout Boy's knowledge) to find out what's going on.

Dad apparently saw quite a lot and what he saw didn't make him happy. At all. So, again, without Pout Boy's knowledge, he had the Guidance Goober work with Pout Boy and requested that his schedule be changed so he has no classes with his new found friends, and we had his locker moved to another location as well. Guidance Goober did his best but Pout Boy just didn't see what the big deal was, didn't care that he was failing, and generally didn't seem to care that his parents were at their wits' ends.

Dad didn't want Pout Boy to know it was really his idea about the schedule change, and didn't say a word to him about it over the weekend. Pout Boy arrives in my homeroom, Guidance Goober calls him to his office to let him know his new schedule and all hell breaks loose. Apparently Pout Boy was rude and disrespectful to Guidance Goober, and proceeded to spend the entire day being disruptive, rude, and disrespectful to anyone and everyone. He told Guidance Mom that he thought his teachers had all conspired to mess with him and he hated us one and all.

He was, in a word, MAD. Furious. Absolutely beside himself because his schedule got changed. Now, in my five years at The School, I've seen a lot of schedule changes, for a variety of reasons, and I have never ever seen a kid make such a big nasty deal about it. Honestly, by the time he arrived back in my fourth period class (about 4 hours after he found out his schedule was changed) he was still furious. He slammed his books down, sulked, pouted, refused to work, rapped his pencil on the table loudly, refused to stop when I asked him to (he was driving his new table mate, Bird Boy - I've never seen this little fellow ever sit in a chair, he always perches - batty). The third time he refused he got a behavior note. When it still didn't stop, I made him stand in a corner where he pouted the rest of the period.

All he had to say for himself was "I don't care." Every warning was met with "I don't care." I finally told him, "Frankly, I don't care if you're mad at the world either, but you have no right to rob your classmates of a chance to review for their test because you're having an attitude issue. You're nothing but a time thief if that's how you're going to behave." What I really wanted to saw was, "Oh, grow the hell up and get over it. "

I then proceeded to email his father, which was met with another "I don't care."

We have a meeting, again, with Dad tomorrow. It should be interesting to see how that goes. Honestly, I wouldn't be surprised if his parents didn't pull him out and either home school him or send him to a private school, just to get him away from the types of friends he's so bound and determined to associate with.

I do have to give my Fourth Period class credit, however. They were not impressed with his antics and looked at him with these expressions of "Jeez, get over it and grow the hell up," when he was doing his sulking, pouting, and pencil rapping. If he thought he was being a big, cool, bad boy, then he failed miserably.


Mrs. T said...

What a big baby.

Anonymous said...

Ugh for you having to deal with him, but that's AWESOME that his parents are so on top of it. If only all parents were like that.

I hope the kid finds an attitude adjustment, and soon.

Jennie said...

Argh. I have one of those as well. We call him "Crabby-Patty." Everything and anything is met with a sullen stare and shrug--and he really has no reason and no excuse to be behaving and failing the way he is.

So annoying and draining.

I don't have him sitting next to a perching child though--I have him next to the most physically imposing girl in the class (a nationally ranked softball player)--when she turns and stares him down, he stops being annoying.

HappyChyck said...

What a ornery little boy. Who thinks he's cool? I can't imagine that the bad kids would even find him amusing. Icky.

loonyhiker said...

I applaud the parents for taking action when they saw a problem. I have seen too many parents shrug their shoulders and say it is the school's problem. I hope more parents accept that their child is having problems rather than just ignoring it.

Jose Vilson said...

First off, I have to laugh at the "Crabby Patty" comment. Arg-arg-arg-arg-arg ...

Secondly, this boy really has a lot going on at home. He's trying to find his identity and unfortunately, it's not helping that he had all these bad influences around him. I think eventually, he'll come out of that rut, but it's good that you're taking a proactive stance to help change that behavior. Try not to take it too personally. Good post.