A brief update between piles of tests being marked...
Pushing the envelope: BIG time
Ah, the novelty has worn off. The whole 'ooh new school' feeling has been replaced by 'what?!? homework?!? f£$k th@£ sh!£" feeling and the kids are pushing back BIG time. It really does feel like sitting on a suitcase with the most obnoxious troll inside... we've just got to sit tight and make sure we don't let up the pressure. Which is rough. Especially when you're beyond tired. I've let a couple students slide already this week who I need to mop up tomorrow and Thursday--they think they've gotten away. Ha! Not so fast.
I love lists. Nay, ADORE lists. My life is just one big long list of lists which is constantly shifting and updating all the time. One day I might be able to make head or tail of them. But for now, at least, I know each student is on a list. Somewhere.
First home visit
Went to chat with a mum today... she came to see me at the school and she was on crutches! So I gave her a lift home and we chatted in her living room about her children who are both at the school. A great lady--keen to support, offered to take a phone call any time. So a positive. Especially after some of the other difficulties in contacting or meeting parents.
The picture swims into focus
I'm finally starting to see what I'm working with here after marking part of the avalanche of diagnostic tests last week. Bleak, dire, despair... um, no still not finding the right word. I don't know how these kids have been allowed to continue like this for so long without having their learning deficits addressed. And it's not like they couldn't do it--they are not stupid. A travesty. Yes, that's what it is. A travesty. Of the worst kind. I still haven't manned up to the task that lies ahead for the rest of the year. I'm still living by da river dey call DeNial. It's ok, for now my sanity lies there. But I'm going to have to take a deep breath and plunge soon into the seriously hectic remedial programs. Right after I have developed them.
That's it for now: the initial 'whoop whoop-new school' feeling has worn off rather quickly. We're now fighting against the slide into the 'look-the-other-way-because-I-can't-handle-this' approach that happens in most SA public schools: we're now fighting for the school we really want. We've got a helluva fight on our hands.