Sunday, October 5, 2008

Only the Names have been Changed

One of my very best friends teaches 6th grade Language Arts. He's good at it. For example, one of his former students is now a 7th grader making a B in honors English. This same student is failing all of his other courses, which range from regular to remedial. My friend is the one who managed to get this kid to give a shit about anything at all related to school.

For this and many other reasons, I'd love to name my friend here. If you ever come to Bryan-College Station, you'd want to meet him. You'd want your children to be taught by him. An incident of a month ago, however, suggests to me that I might not be able to name my friend, at least in his capacity as a teacher, on this blog.

He broke up a fight between two students, one who knew him, one who didn't. The one who knew him went limp immediately upon being dragged away, choosing to not aim a blow at the teacher as hormone-driven young men often do. The other, I'm not sure. My friend received the followup report to this incident just recently. His former student received standard in-school punishment for fighting. The other was charged with a felony for having a gun in his bag and intending to kill his opponent.

That's right - my friend, the good teacher, in breaking up a fight, might have been shot by a 7th grader if things went wrong.

This post could be about violence in schools or racism in BCS (my friend has been called a "nigger" by young black men at his school who are woefully unaware of just how sad that statement is) or any number of subjects. But for the moment, it's about how I'm afraid to print my friend's name because it might identify him as party to a felony. It's not that the other gang members will hunt him down or anything so dramatic, but that per school rules, we probably aren't allowed to know this happened.

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