Thursday, December 3, 2009

Have a Heart, Teach

A 9-year-old kid (not mine) raised her hand in class one morning and said, "Mrs. Smith, I need to go to the clinic. I'm sick."

Her eyes were puffy and bloodshot and watery. She couldn't breathe through her nose. Her face was flushed a dark pink. The kid looked sick.

"Suck it up," responded the teacher.

The little girl had to wait until lunch time, when the class was in the cafeteria and she had access to other school personnel, to ask to go to the clinic. The teacher on duty in the cafeteria took one look at her and immediately excused her to go to the clinic. At the clinic, they determined she was ill. Her mother was called and the girl was sent home sick for the day.

The point: What's up with this teacher? Who says "suck it up" to a kid in fourth grade, especially one who's clearly under the weather? I mean, at least say something like "Try to hang in there, okay?".

What's with the tough talk? The teacher needs to take an empathy pill and drop the militant tough-guy approach. This is fourth grade, not boot camp.

Or am I just too soft-hearted?


Amanda said...

You're absolutely not too sensitive. I can't believe that. I mean, I would maybe tell my siblings or friends to suck it up if it was minor and necessary that they wait (or they were being a major whiner). But you don't, as a teacher, tell children who are obviously ill to suck it up. You just don't. First, what if it wasn't just a cold but something more serious? Where time was of the essence? And you should be thinking about all the healthy kids too - it's better for everybody if sick child gets treated.

Ugh. If I were that child's parent, you can BET they'd be getting an earful and so would the principal.

Oh, and PS - can you update your link for me?? pretty please? :) I moved my blog from wordpress to blogger!

gudnuff said...

Thanks for the validation! (I'm so needy...)

Doh! Sorry. I'll fix it right now. :-)

Christie-The ChatterBox said...

Not needy or sensitive at all! I probably would have asked too because I would just want to make sure that I'm not crazy for thinking that teacher is an absolute ass! And they wonder why both flus are running rampant? Sorry I've been away...but I always come back!!

Debbie said...

No. You're not too sensitive. When you can look at a child and plainly see they are sick, it is past time to be kind.

A Lawyer Mom's Musings said...

Err, it's awfully hard to "suck it up" through a stopped-up nose.

CatrinkaS said...

Around these parts, you get sent home for saying you feel... anything 'off,' the swine flu paranoia is so high.

And "suck it up?" Never appropriate. (I might have said it to my own 10-yr-old before, but then... i know who I am dealing with in that scenario. I promise I wouldn't say it someone else's kid. Esp not one that looked not right...)

Oh, and Happy New Year. And welcome back!