Wednesday, March 3, 2010


I try not to write negative stories about my students very often, because I'm afraid it will begin to sound like I hate my job and/or my students, and that's not the case at all.

I did feel like I hated a large percentage of them today when we took them on a field trip to visit two local colleges, but that's just because it's hard to teach a group of teenagers manners all in one day.

The sense of entitlement exhibited by some of them, however, is a constant source of amazement for me.

We went to one of those belly-up-to-the-trough, all-you-can-stuff-in-your-face establishments between our two college visits today. We prepared our students for the fact that they would need to bring money for lunch, and that it would be pricey compared to what they are used to spending for school lunch. They didn't HAVE to go on the field trip; a handful of students either weren't invited on the trip or chose to stay at school and get their work done.

One girl stood apart from the line when we went in, and I was bringing up the rear with the bus driver, because I had to pay for his lunch. I asked the girl why she wasn't eating, and she said, "No money." It was sort of matter-of-fact, not pitiful or begging or anything. I motioned for her to get in line, and I discreetly added her meal in with mine and the bus driver's. I will get reimbursed for both of those, and that's not what bothers me. She did appear grateful, telling me I was the most wonderful teacher in the world. I'm not sure paying for a buffet lunch qualifies me for that, but I didn't argue with her.

Halfway through lunch, however, her mother showed up. And her sister. And her nephew. And they all proceeded to go through the buffet line and eat lunch there too. Never did the mom offer to pay me back for buying the student's lunch.

Is it just me, or is something wrong with that?

I don't mean to sound petty, and goodness knows the seven bucks or so isn't going to break me or make my family suffer in any way. But come on, people..... Where do some of them get this sense of entitlement?

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