Thursday, December 20, 2007

Student Turns Back On The Hand That Feeds Him: Or, It Ceases To Surprise Me Any More

Student: [at 8:40 this morning] I failed my semester final, and the semester. Is there any extra credit work I can do to pass?

Me: You do realize today is the last day of finals and the semester?

Student: Yes.

Me: I don't show you ever came for morning tutoring with me, is that correct?

Student: Yes.

Me: I don't show you ever signed up for side-by-side conferencing with me during class for any assignment, is that correct?

Student: Yes.

Me: Did you go to afternoon tutoring, evening tutoring in the library, Saturday tutoring? Did you ask for help in class from Ms. S? [inclusion support instructor]

Student: No.

Me: Did you write the rough draft of the essay we wrote in class over the last five days that you could then use on your final?

Student: No.

Me: Did you study the exam review I gave?

Student: I didn't get one.

Me: Yes, you did. I handed you one when you came in the door.

Student: I lost it.

Me: I told all my classes that there were extras available.

Student: [shrug]

Me: So let me get this straight. You would like me to create, on the last day of the semester, some sort of extra credit which will make up for the three failing 6 weeks' grades you've had since August? Right now, when I'm about to give my last 2 finals, and have to grade 161 essays by the time grades are due tomorrow at noon? What is it you think I can put together by the time the bell rings at 9 to make up for all the work you haven't done since school started? And also...wait a minute. Do you even have a backpack with you?

Student: No.

Me: Did you bring any paper?

Student: No.

Me: Did you bring something to write with?

Student: No.

Me: came to me on the last day of the semester, wanting me to take on the added work of creating for you some sort of extra credit meaningful enough to raise your ENTIRE semester grade to passing...and you didn't bring paper, or anything to write with?

Student: [to his credit, looking really dejected now] Yes.

Me: So your intent was that I should also have to provide you with the supplies to complete the work? Are you aware that I buy the extra supplies for this classroom?

Student: [squirms a bit]

Me: Your accommodations allow for you to retake the semester exam for a maximum of a 70. Do you have a last period exam today?

Student: No. I just have baseball this morning. I can study then.

Me: Did you bring money with you today?

Student: Yes.

Me: Good. Take your money, and this rubric, and the sample essay we've been deconstructing, studying, and mirroring for this entire assignment. Make a copy of it in the library and bring it back. Then, I suggest you spend the time during baseball writing your rough draft for the essay, since it is 60% of your final exam. [Dictated by the district.]

Student: Um. Can I still fail this semester and then get my grade up enough to pass for the year next semester?

Me: [eyes probably popping out of head] Are you trying to tell me that after all this, you don't want to make the effort to even retake the semester exam? After you came here asking ME for extra credit?

Student: [squirms] Well...noooo...I'll take it. [Takes rubric and sample essay, returns within 10 minutes.]

Me: Okay, I'll see you next period.

Student...did not show up to retake final.


CaliforniaTeacherGuy said...

And I trust that you failed said student, which said student so richly deserved.

Redkudu said...

That's the thing - he'd already failed. I was giving him a chance to pass. Apparently, he didn't want it badly enough.

Jose said...

that's horrible. people forget the simple things, like doing what's required of them.