School News

This Tuesday was my third anniversary as a substitute teacher. I spent the day at my favorite elementary school. I teach there often enough that it sometimes feels as though I was part of the regular staff--the regular staff certainly treat me almost as though I were--and many of the kids know me, so it is a comfortable place to be. I had an assignment at a different school the next day (another of my favorites) and was scheduled to be back at *my* school again today.

Today I was subbing for a special education teacher (actually helping cover for several special ed staff while they had a meeting), and so my schedule had me bouncing from room to room. I noticed a bit of a subdued atmosphere around the place, but I assumed that it was because the 4th graders and their teachers where all out of the building on a field trip. It wasn't until around 10 that I finally discovered what was going on, and that was because I found the newspaper clipping on the table in the staff room. On Tuesday night, one of the special education teachers died in a car accident on the way home. If I had been there again on Wednesday, I would have heard the news with everybody else.

Apparently, she was driving home around 10 or 11 PM, lost control of her car, and drove off the road. No one else was involved, but she wasn't wearing a seat belt, and was thrown from the vehicle. In the newspaper article, it mentioned that they were looking to see if alcohol may have been a factor, but that they had no idea, and wouldn't know for a few days. I'm not sure why, but I find myself angry that they mentioned alcohol at all, since they don't know. I think it is because many people will read that article, but never see a follow up. She may not have been drinking, but the mention of it leaves a bit of a shadow and there is a very good chance that her students may read the article. She's dead. Let her rest. I'm probably being irrational about this.

She was a wonderful teacher and a great person. She genuinely cared for the students with whom she worked, even taking time for them outside of school hours. She was firm but patient, and had an excellent sense of humor. She always made me feel welcome when I was working with her, and was ready to help whenever I had a question. She will be missed.

Please, everyone, wear your seatbelts and drive as safely as you can.

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This page contains a single entry by Kayjayoh published on December 17, 2004 12:24 AM.

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