This post is a rant. I am not going to make it on facebook because I do not want to be all over the place with this, but I need to vent.
Are you fucking kidding me??? I have worked with your son for two years and you decide to end our agreement and tutoring, not with a phone call, not with a meeting, but with a fucking text message??? Who the hell do you think you are??
The background is this: I have been tutoring this wonderful kid for two years. When I first met him, he would not do anything. It was a constant struggle to get him to write, to do math, to read…he just gave up all the time.
Over the course of the last two years, he has bloomed. I watched him go from a three sentence paragraph to five to six sentences and from one paragraph essays to three pagers comparing Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing” and “The Odyssey.” We discussed things along the way, but he did the writing. He is awesome. I am proud of him like you wouldn’t believe.
Now, that is just English. never mind the fact that we went through Physical Science, Algebra, Geometry, Spanish 1 (and almost all of Spanish 2 at the time of this writing), Digital Art, Digital Photography, Intro to Entreprenership, Like Management Skills (Health), and Economics. We did English 2,3, and most of 4. We were almost done.
I had taken a new full-time job since the college fiasco and the lessening of class hours for adjuncts and I had tried to make arrangements to meet with David for two nights a week to finish English and Spanish with him. I had tried repeatedly to call his mother and get her to talk to me about his guidance counselor’s recommendation, but no dice.
Then I get a text on Tuesday while I am at orientation. The change in his schedule was going to be too hectic (from 830-12 four times a week to 4-6 twice a week is too hectic?) and she had decided to pull him from the tutoring and teach him at home. Huh?
Now, to give you a perspective, here is the situation. When I was hired, I was told that I was going to be in charge of choosing his classes with him. I was given a copy of his transcripts, and told to figure things out. Then I was left alone with him for six weeks without VLACS and made to wing it. Six weeks to get this kid into VLACS. Seriously.
I bit my tongue and came up with creative games to do with him. We survived the six weeks and got rolling. I chose classes based on the curriculum set by his high school, and we went along pretty well for a year and a half, although my repeated requests to speak to his guidance counselor went unheeded. Last December, however, I was suddenly told that I was not choosing the correct classes. His mother then took over the reins…but not really. Eventually, I got him enrolled in Intro to Entrepreneurship and his last English class without much of her help. I had waited four weeks by that point. We simply did what we had to do.
So when the college thing happened, I found myself without a solid plan. I started trying to set up what I would do when this fall (2013) came. Then my mother died, and I was offered a job at Pelham very shortly after. I took it without much hesitation. I knew we were almost done, and we’d be down to one class – English. One more month would do it twice a week. He’d have to move one work day to the mornings. Dad was on board. I thought my student was on board. I never got a call back from Mom though. She never returned my calls.
Then the text.
So the upshot is this: You hire a professional English teacher, tell her to choose the classes your son needs, don’t give her access to the Guidance Counselor to get a picture of what he needs, yell at her for not picking the right classes when she has nothing to go by but the school website requirements which are vague (two arts, one gym, seven electives, etc) and has been asking to get help for months, take over the class choices, don’t actually pick classes for four weeks until I prompt your son, not return my calls, and basically ignore my attempts to contact you until you can send me a text message kicking me to the curb because I had to take another job? Because I have to support my family too?
And worst of all, I didn’t get to say goodbye.
You can’t work with a kid for two years and not grow attached. I looked forward to talking with him, playing Nile Online, explaining poetry, fighting through Geometry together, complaining about the stupid mistakes on the website, and generally sharing thoughts and dreams with him. But not even a goodbye.
I called Mom. She stated that this was a gift from God, to let him see that he can do the work himself, and this may be true. He is hitting the fourth section of the English. It is MacBeth and Byron heavy. It will be a difficult process to achieve. He will make it through or not. Mom said she had bought it on audio tape and had the movie all set for him. She said that she was going to take his fable of “Three Mice and a Rat” and make a little book out of it for him to show his kids when he gets older. She also said that they would have a big dinner when everything was done and that I would be invited since I had been such a big part of his success.
I am not going to bank on it. I suspect, as others have, that she is jealous that he worked well for me and that she wanted her little boy back. He is everything to her, and I can understand how hard it is for people to let their little boy grow up. Will just got his car today, and it was nerve-wracking letting him drive away in the little green Honda he is so happy about. He’s growing up. But even though her son is her little boy, he has been my student for two years. I have come to care a great deal about him, and pulling the rug out from under a kid like that, yanking the carpet of support out from under him, especially when his girlfriend is leaving for college in a week, is not the right thing to do. Mom might well be glad to have her little boy all back to herself. I wonder how he feels, however. I did text him and we did chat over the phone, but there is one thing that I know he is thinking.
He didn’t get to say goodbye either.
Good job, Mom.