Category: Publius


| Humor, Prose, Publius

by Publius My student teacher gets back from a meeting at his university. So I say to him, “I see other teachers in this building teach all the time. So I know what I look like compared to Mr. North, say, or this one and that. But I have no idea how I compare to …

The Inspection

| Prose, Publius

by Publius On Fridays, it is my custom to do a reading for my students. I’ve done this for years. I am on the state arts council, which means that I get free subscriptions to great literary magazine published in the area. I also subscribe to several national journals, and am familiar with the production …

Student Teachers

| Humor, Prose, Publius

by Publius I love working with student teachers. Perhaps, in part, it’s a way of revisiting my youth. Perhaps, in part, it’s an act of hope. Today, Mr. Palmer, my student teacher, made one of those mistakes we all make when we are young teachers. My students, his students now, are writing non-fiction. So Mr. …

When to Run and When to Hide

| Humor, Prose, Publius

by Publius On Monday, the faculty of the Social Studies Department was informed that they wouldn’t need to teach for the next three days. Instead, they are to give a test. A standardized language test. The students will be shunted into the music rooms, because those rooms are big. There aren’t enough chairs, but there …

Rules and Procedures

By | Humor, Prose, Publius

There are rules and procedures. Whenever something is confiscated, say a cell phone, we’re required to tape it to the referral form, make a xerox copy, then send said form, said contraband, and said kid to the in-house suspension room. So this morning a wet kid showed up to the in-house suspension room with his …

Fuck Us! A Public School Teacher’s Rant

By | Humor, Prose, Publius

Christine got called downtown for a disciplinary hearing. The central office was looking to fire her. Her offence? An email which reads, “I hear you. I’ve also got a class of 42. Fuck us!” Apparently, there is some policy somewhere someplace against saying “fuck”, although there doesn’t seem to be any policy against getting fucked. …

The Good News about Public Schools

By | Humor, Prose, Publius

The school district asked us to propose a slogan for its letterhead. I emailed — The Metropolitan Public Schools Standardizing The Future One Test At A Time _____


By | Humor, Prose, Publius

My kids are so tired of taking standardized tests. Tomyko, a kid in my Advanced Placement class, devised a strategy to entertain himself. Tomyko noticed that, on this computerized test, every time he answered a question right, the next question was harder. And the reverse if he got the question wrong. He did excellently the …