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"Murphy was an optimist!"

Bearden Middle School Bomb Threat – Update February 24, 2006 11:25 am

Posted by Doug McCaughan in : Daily Life, Education, Family, News, Of Interest, Sarah
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Since the school was given the all clear, normal classes began at 11am. Any student checked out received an unexcused absence. Words exchanged amongst parents in the office were:

"the school declared this a drill and a normal day,"
"originally they were claiming it would be an excused absence,"
"all parents should call downtown to the administrative offices and complain to get this switched to an excused absence."

Overheard of the students:

"half my team is gone,"
"we aren’t going to do anything but sit around,"
"half the school checked out at the church."

I reiterate: All parents of Bearden Middle School (BMS) students should call downtown, not the school, to protest this day as an unexcused absence. All checkouts should be excused.
Central office information: 865-594-1900
Middle School Coordinator 865-594-1619

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Comments»

1. Critter - February 24, 2006

oh the unexcused absense bullshit would have me fuckin livid.

2. djuggler - February 24, 2006

The school system here is ridiculous on absentee policy. The now deceased Judge Garrett managed to push through law that says after 5 unexcused absences the parents must appear in court. The only justice in that is that Judge Garrett had to try every case but he’s not around anymore.

Where do unexcuses absences come from? Fevers. When a child has a fever they are not allowed to go to school but the doctor’s office won’t see them for a fever. The docs won’t give notes for patiences that aren’t seen. So your choice is to contrive a reason to get in the doctor’s office wasting valuable time and taking an appointment slot away from someone that truly needs it, accept the unexcused absence, or send your child to school to infect other people and be sent home (excused).

3. jenianddean - February 24, 2006

I have two questions:
Did they (the school) tell you that this was going to be unexcused when you checked Sarah out?

What would have happened if you would have taken her back?

4. djuggler - February 24, 2006

My post is a little misleading because it sounds like I am upset over the unexcused absence and I’m not. I actually tried to encourage Sarah and her friend to remain at school and make something of the day. Ultimately, I left the choice to the girls because if they were determined that this was to be a wasted day then they weren’t going to pay attention in class nor be productive; a self-fulfilling prophecy. Some parents were very hot.

I’m not sure the school ever made a statement about absences being excused in the first place. Which is why I only quoted it in what the other parents were saying.

As far as taking them back, as long as they attend for 4 hours of the day (I believe that’s the number), they get credit for the day. But it moot since we were standing in the office when I explained to Sarah that it would be unexcused and she still chose to go home.

What is funny is her reaction as I drove past the mall. Apparently she expected me to just drop her and friend off at the mall for some unchaperoned teenage loitering in the mall. She declared, “duh. That was the whole point of getting checked out!” Then I explained babysitting to her.

5. Reality Me » Could you, would you save a life? - March 8, 2006

[…] Poor Sarah. Bomb threats, lock downs, and possibly death. Too much reality for a 12 year old. The sad thing is Sarah keeps everything locked inside of her and I can’t get anything but stoic, short answers from her. I was the same way at her age and it pains me because I know that keeping things bottled up can only last so long and eventually it all has to come out; the longer she waits, the harder it will be to deal with the bottled up emotions. I bet she thinks she is being strong; strength would be talking. At least she has caught blog fever and perhaps we can communicate that way. She shared more information about the incident in her blog than I could have dragged out of her with any other means. […]


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