Wednesday, February 2, 2011
I'm Joining Ice Capades and WTF Wednesday
It rained all day after days of freezing, and I think you know what that means. Frozen ground with no place for the water to go... so everyone has swimming pools on their lawns. And things are flooding. And the dirt cellars that many of us have are now flooded. I haven't even looked in mine, but I am sure it is since the campground is one big pond right now.
This led to WTF Wednesday. Our administration likes to make thing very complex, so there is a series of codes that they like to use on the loudspeakers. Except they forget to tell us what these codes mean. Here is the message that came over the speaker at 2:05 this afternoon:
At this time, ALL STUDENTS are to go to their lockers, get their coats and report to where you go for the fire marshall.
We dont' have a local fire marshall, just a state guy, and the kids dont' even know what that means. My 8th graders (my favorite class, the one I've had 2 lock down drills with and really like) looked at me, I looked at them, we furrowed our brows. WTF??? Thank God he came back on.
ALL STUDENTS are to go to their lockers, get their belongings and go out to your fire drill place with your homeroom
Oh yes, that's much clearer. WTF? It's raining, everything is icy, the alarm is not going off, school isnt' over until 2:42. Get their stuff? Get out?? The kids were like "does he mean OUTSIDE?"
So, I told them to get out and get their stuff and I grabbed my coat and phone (3 years ago, we had so many fire alarms that I quickly learned to grab my coat) and my other shoes so I could go into the slop and marched out the door. Oh and I had my keys. It was all very strange. No one knew what was going on. Everyone was hurrying out the door. When I saw kids bringing out backpacks I realized I didnt' have my gradebook and all my school stuff.
Rumors started flying. Kids were surprisingly good on the ice that we all had to stand on.
Buses started coming in, having no idea we'd been evacuated, and were surprised when a fire truck snuck up on them and made them get out of the way.
Then we were all allowed back inside BUT NOT NEAR THE GYM after like 5 minutes. But everyone was sent back to homeroom. So I completely lost my last class.
For what, you ask?
Well, the gym locker rooms were flooded due to the excessive water and frozen ground. See above. And then in the process of them being flooded, and this is the part I really don't understand, somehow a gas can that was outside managed to get tipped over into the snow/ice/slush and pooled into the water. This caused a smell of gas that no one knew the source of at the time and the teachers were afraid to go into the gym with the kids and thus an evacuation was called.
How gasy water managed to get into the building is beyond me since the water in the locker room was coming up through the drains in the floor. And this mystery gas can was on the other side of the gym.
Oh, but WTF doesn't end there! Earlier in the day, this was the announcement:
Teacher hold passing. (except it sounded like teachers hold staffing).
If you were a sub, would you know what that meant? Yes, it means no one is allowed out of your room because there is an incident of some sort going on. It's not a full blown lockdown where an intruder is in the building and threatening to kill us all, but there is either someone being removed in handcuffs or someone needing an ambulance or some sort of disaster in the hall.
But no one ever remembers what that little phrase means. And our dean is not good under pressure. And he gets all anxious on the announcement so he's hard to understand. He could simply tell us to please keep students in our classrooms until further notice. But he must use "code language" so as to not worry kids. But kids get worried because we have no idea what he is saying or what it means.
It meant a kid was refusing to go home when his parents came, so they had to call the police because he was out running around like a maniac, so they brought in 3 cruisers and no one needed to see that circus. Chances are, no one would have even seen it because everyone was in class, and the 2 kids that might have gone to the bathroom probably wouldn't have noticed. Instead, they get everyone all riled up and dying to know what the incident was.
So then he has to follow up that incident with one more announcement that a teacher from each team should go to the office. To find out what happened and then disseminate it. So then even more tension builds as people wait for the whispers about what was happening.
We really could have used a snow day, as I might have mentioned yesterday. theconfessor has a great breakdown of the snow day. Go check it out.