I have a new student in one of my American Lit classes. She transferred from one of the high schools a few towns over, that tends to have a reputation for being in a tougher neighborhood. I asked her after a few days how she liked the new school, and our conversation went like this:
Me: How do you find the school after a few days?
Her: People here are really ignorant…
Me: How do you mean?
Her: Kids keep coming up to me and saying, “You’re black!”
Me: Well, it is a fairly white school district…but those comments aren’t particularly helpful.
Her: I’m not even black; I’m biracial. And when they ask me where I transferred from and I tell them, they ask if I got into a lot of fights. Or if I got pregnant, and that’s why I’m here.
So that’s a rough way to start a week at a new school. I suppose we do sometimes get students from other districts for reasons of attendance, pregnancy, or behavior, but it is unfortunate that that is where the student mind leaps – doesn’t make for a great first impression.
We didn’t get off for Martin Luther King Jr. Day on the 19th like many other districts in the area. Our school calendar gets us out before June, which is great but leads to a really long stretch before spring break (nine solid weeks, to be exact) without a break. One rumor I heard at the school was that we didn’t get MLK day because “we didn’t have enough black kids at our school.”