I ran into a bunch of students and their parents yesterday. It could be because I was at the school helping with registration (can you believe first day of classes is in 10 days? TEN DAYS!!), but whatever.
It was great! I originally volunteered to work a few hours in the morning, but got my arm twisted into staying the whole day. No, not literally twisted. It’s an expression. My administrator thanked me for being so nice, so I said, “Well, I could be nice, but maybe I just have no life?” He didn’t laugh.
Chris was there to pick up his diploma. He’d passed summer school by the skin of his teeth. But he passed!!! He now has a job at UPS. He told me he hates the hours, but wants to stick with it since it will pay for his college. Plus, he and his girlfriend are expecting a baby in October. Lots of congratulations all around. He does give the best bear hugs ever; it makes sense that he wants to be an EMT/Firefighter.
Mike’s mom was there and so I got to meet his little sister. Wow, they are so night and day! I commented on it and she laughed, “It’s because he’s so immature, right?” I just smiled. Mike is adorable and sweet, but has the worst case of ADD I’ve ever seen! Everyday I’d see him in the hallways and no matter how far away he was, he’d start screaming “Mrs. Cruuuuuuuumpett” and run towards me, his skinny arms and legs flailing every which way. I’m surprised he hasn’t given anyone a concussion. Honestly. I wonder if his “ankle jewelry” is gone yet?
Hank was there with his mom; he was just as awkward as ever. His mother has contacted me several times during the summer, but trying to return calls is a challenge. Ring, ring. “Yeah,” one of Hank’s older brothers answers the phone. “Hi, this is Mrs. Crumpett. I missed a call from this number.” “Probably,” he’s so helpful. “Could it have been Hank or your mother?” “Probably,” he should totally get a job as a phone operator or customer service rep. “Okay, will you tell her I called?” “Yeah,” and then he hung up leaving me totally confident that, despite all the other times of not giving her my messages, this will be the day that he does.
Steve’s auntie was there to register her newest freshman as well as Steve’s little brother. His cousin pretended to be too shy to speak to me, but he couldn’t not smile when I called him Carlito and asked how his summer went. He was one of my best English students and absolutely loved “Hamlet.”
Jamie was there, too, with her friend. Both were very concerned about graduating this coming May since each had failed the equivalent of a year’s worth of classes. I don’t know her friend, but Jamie has really struggled academically since her accident. At the end of last summer, she was in a car accident. I’m not sure on the details, but I heard that she actually got run over by a friend after Jamie fell off the hood of the car (where she was sitting while someone else was driving) in an empty parking lot. It took her a long time to recover her memories and she still forgets important things.
Others came and went. Lots of smiles and handshakes and fist bumps. It was interesting to help parents fill out the various forms, especially the lunch applications. Wow. Multiple children and they only make $300 a week — sometimes less and sometimes only in child-support. These forms are not user friendly. At all. I led a few families astray with my misinterpretation of the directions and so we had to start over a few times. Plus, there are no alternative language options – how is the possible?! We have the highest “English as a Second Language” population in our district, what makes us think that if the kids struggle with English then the parents won’t?! It was insanity. But the parents were very trusting of me (apparently I have “that kind of face”) and I enjoyed getting to know them and helping them navigate the form and terminology.
The weirdest part? The sheer number of teenagers racing to wait in the longest line EVER to get their IDs. Oh to be young and feel so overwhelmingly photogenic.