Thursday, February 10, 2011
Student: I wanted to talk to you about why you marked me absent last Tuesday.
Me: I marked you absent because you were not in class last Tuesday.
Student: But you didn't mark XYZ absent, and he was not here either.
Me: And how do you know that?
Student: Because he told me.
Me: Well, he wasn't here either, and I did mark him absent. I cannot show you his attendance record, but you can ask him again if you want. He was marked absent, and I don't know why he would tell you otherwise.
Student: Well, I still don't understand why you marked me absent. I think it was because you are mad at me.
Me: Interesting. I am not angry at you at all, but I am sorry you think so. However, I am not sure how my feelings change the fact that I marked the attendance as accurately reflecting your absence. Just out of curiousity. Did you know we had class last Tuesday?
Student: Yes, I knew.
Me: Did you have an appointment you forgot to tell me about?
Me: Were you sick and couldn't come to class?
Me: Well, did you come to class last Tuesday?
Me: Well, if you knew we had class, and you did not have an appointment, and you were not sick, why weren't you in class?
Student: I just wasn't.
Me: So, you know that you were not in class last Tuesday even though you were supposed to be, right?
Me: You knew you had to be here. You know it is my job to take attendance. You know that you were not here. I don't understand why are you upset?
Student: Because you are not being fair.
Can someone please explain how this is MY fault? I do not understand, but somehow, I ended up the bad guy in this situation. After more discussion and what I thought was understanding, the student left my classroom. I thought everything was okay. I was wrong. Apparently, he is still upset. His sister and two other friends are made at me now too. Apparently, I hurt his feelings. I wonder what he told his parents?
Did I mention this is one of the students I go to church with? Sunday should be interesting.
Maybe it's the extreme cold we are feeling at an altitude above 6000 feet. Who knows, but how hard is it to accept accountability for your own actions?