There's A Drill For That

There should be a way of practicing for all of life's disasters.

I received the email just like every parent did.  Today, our students practiced the lockdown procedure, a drill for the horrifying possibility that an intruder or other malevolent force would be on the premises and thus endanger the students.

It is an idea too scary to entertain and the fact that a drill had to be developed to address the potential event makes me ill.

But it does make me think.

If our kids are practicing for the worst moments of their lives in order to make them a little safer and better prepared, then maybe the drill agenda should expand a little.

First Break-Up Drill - All students should be forced to stand in front of a mirror and recite, "I am better off on my own."  They should be instructed that all meals, rituals of hygiene, study behaviors, and the general rotation of the planet will continue regardless of the terrible event.

Students should also note that the person in question will undoubtedly regret the decision even if he or she nevers appears to do so. 

College Rejection Letter Practice - While everyone knows that Seahawks are coveted acquisitions at all colleges near and far, should one of our own ever receive this sort of painful missive, it is important that each student be prepared.  

Apply early and copiously.  Never refer to any institution as the "safety school" lest it become known in the future as the "alma mater." Realize that it will hurt but it is not personal.

Life is Not High School Drill - Although it seems that the opposite is true, Seahawks will actually rely far more on what they learned on their own than they learned within the school's walls.  It is all about the homework.  

In anticipation of leaving SLHS, Seahawks should practice doing their own laundry, learning how to speak to people who have jobs to offer, and managing whatever money they have.

 Mastering these three tasks will ultimately be more useful than a stellar GPA or having been popular among people who aren't even allowed to vote. 

John Farrell September 28, 2011 at 05:25 AM
SLHS students have already practiced being insulted by their principal. After being called "morally corrupt," they should be able to withstand any abuse authority figures may heap on them in the future.
Carlos Piqur September 28, 2011 at 09:54 AM
Give it a rest!
John Farrell September 28, 2011 at 12:25 PM
not a chance
Carlos Piqur September 28, 2011 at 12:46 PM
Sounds like someone's got a vendetta, beating up a a dead and long-buried horse. That episode is done, harping on it ad nausea like a broken record ain't go fix nothing, but maybe make one feel important and perhaps better.
John Farrell September 28, 2011 at 12:48 PM
gibson's leaving, dale's leaving, . . . .
Carlos Piqur September 28, 2011 at 12:59 PM
Well good for you, I guess we owe you. You made that happen "oh all important one". I am sure that you can make Butler disappear too, at least I am sure you would want to - because your opinion is the right(eous) one.
John Farrell September 28, 2011 at 01:19 PM
Just a small part of a much bigger reform movement to change the punitive culture of FCPS. The West Springfield principal, who used cell phones to record a food fight about which he had advanced warning instead of calling a meeting of the seniors to head it off, is leaving. Kicked upstairs to Gatehouse, aka the "land of failed principals." Who's next Nardis King with 300 suspensions at Mount Vernon? Our boy Bruce, who told Tina Hone he would never allow a kid who had been involutarily transferred from SLHS for discipline issues to return despite specific language in the SRR to that effect. Or William Campbell at Centreville who wants cameras in the cafeteria and hallways to "monitor the community users of [his] high school from 4-11 pm." Even though there have been few if any incidents of community users (aka grown ups having PTA meetings and Adult education class) doing any damage to high schools. righteous no, informed yes it's a School Board election year - choices to be made
Carlos Piqur September 28, 2011 at 01:43 PM
You forgot to add opinionated too. Anything else about the other high school principals, are they ok with you? Are they blessed by King John? You should be delighted that I am giving a soapbox toanswer and speak the truth.
Jonas Sterling September 28, 2011 at 02:04 PM
Interesting exchange, and amusing as well. Not sure what the principals have to do with the school board elections, as far as I know they are appointed not elected. So, that being the case, it would be more beneficial to focus on the attributes of the candidates and their philosophies to fix the shortcomings of the schol system than the individual actions of some of these principals. if we elect the right SB members, than they can be the judges (diretly or through new Superintendent they hire) of how critical or significant some of these principals' activities are in relationship to their entire performance and then figure out what to do about it, if anything.
John Farrell September 28, 2011 at 02:07 PM
though declining the coronation as unjustified, I do appreciate the opportunity. Thank you so very much
Carlos Piqur September 28, 2011 at 02:10 PM
You are welcome for the opportunity. That is the kind of guy I am, watching out for you.
John Farrell September 28, 2011 at 02:18 PM
Actually, your district school board member is deeply involved in the selection/retention of principals at every school in their district and any school where large number of their constituents attend. We have a group of high school principals who have created a punitive/prison like atmosphere at our high schools. Their latest move in that direction is surveillance cameras. With this mind set being so pervasive, only substantial changes in personnel can accomplish a change in culture. And yet there are exceptions to that culture. The community needs to identify those who are part of the destructive culture and who is not.
The Convict September 28, 2011 at 03:46 PM
Big deal. When I was in elementary school, we had air raid drills on a weekly basis. I'm not sure how hiding under our tables was going to save our tender posteriors in the case of a Soviet first strike, but it's got to be a helluva lot worse than anything that a Klebold/Harris Wannabe could do.
Melissa Hammond Gifford September 28, 2011 at 03:49 PM
Enjoyed this column, Justine - Clever and funny, as always:-)
Arielle Masters September 28, 2011 at 05:30 PM
Love your new drills :->


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