Friday, March 5, 2010

Dear Students (many students, not just one):

This happens every class, every grading period of every year. So I'm not just singling out the students I have right now, but pretty much every kid who's walked through my door and expected me to drop everything just for them:

In case you haven't noticed, I have a sign on my board that says:

Failure to plan on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.

What this means is, if you've spent the entire six weeks slacking off, not paying attention, not doing work, not turning things in on time... basically, not caring about my class... I therefore reserve the right to NOT CARE that your parents are threatening to take your phone away or ground you for having a failing grade at the six-week grading period. If you can't be bothered to make it a priority to pass my class, then I'm not going to make it a priority to bring up your grade for two days just so you can go to some party or dance. Nor am I going to feel obligated to make special exceptions or break rules for you. A progress report is to show what kind of progress you've made, and if you haven't made any, then I'm sorry if I really don't care about trying to fudge things for you so that you don't lose your precious teenage privileges.

Do I care about you learning? Yes. Do I want to see you eventually bring up your grade? Absolutely. Am I willing to help you do that? Of course. Am I glad that you had an epiphany and realized you need to actually work to pass my class? Sure. But pardon me if I feel annoyed with you for coming to me at the last minute, when I clearly have warned you all along and you clearly have ignored everything I've ever said to you. And pardon me if I say, I TOLD YOU SO.

Regardless of what grades they have, the students who try their hardest are the ones who earn my respect. So show me that you're worth it.

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Before you comment, please note: respect and patience go a long way.