Tuesday, December 3, 2013
No Helicopter Needed, Part Deux
Allow me to introduce the Little Kid - elementary school crime-fighter.
[Note that I do not have a current picture of him dressed to fight crime, so a photo from his sixth birthday party will have to do. He is bigger than this now - but only by a little bit. Kid's never going to play professional basketball.]
A few weeks back, I heard LK explaining to Big Kid the deets of a playground run-in:
So then [name of child] said that he had six flat-screen TVs, two Playstations and an Xbox, and he said that EVERYONE IN OUR CLASS had that much swag, EXCEPT for me, because I'm "poor."
BK: But NONE of that is true. And I think your friends know that.
LK: Doesn't matter. It still hurt my feelings, and he was still being a bully, and PEOPLE SHOULDN'T BULLY OTHER PEOPLE.
At this point, I stepped in and asked if Mom and Dad needed to take the matter up with LK's teacher - perhaps set up a meeting with the other boy's parents?
LK: Oh, no. I already told the teacher. And she made him to apologize to me in front of everyone AND OFFER ME A FULL RETRACTION. And he also lost playground time FOR AN ENTIRE WEEK. So I think we're good.
Oh. Okay. Offer withdrawn.
Maybe two weeks after that, a highly agitated LK came home from school and informed his father of an unpleasant run-in with a male substitute teacher (no, not THAT kind of run-in):
I got up to go to the bathroom, because Mrs. C just lets us go on the honor system [editor's note: the bathroom is right next door], and the substitute asked me, "What do you think you're doing?" And I told him that I was going to the bathroom, and he said, "Oh, you THINK so, huh?" And then he started mocking me - like, when I folded my arms, he folded his arms, and when my voice got high, he copied my voice, and then the other kids started to laugh.
Did he let you go to the bathroom?
Yes - EVENTUALLY. And I cried a little bit in the bathroom, but I didn't let him see me cry. And when I came back, I walked up to him, and I told him that I thought he was behaving like a bully, and that adults shouldn't bully kids - ESPECIALLY TEACHERS - and I told him that he hurt my feelings and I thought that he should apologize.
And how did he respond to THAT?
He blinked a couple of times - and then he apologized to me.
Spouse took offense at the substitute's action (with good reason) and decided to take the matter up with the principal. He took LK with him, and when Spouse began to explain the situation, LK said:
No, let me.
An experienced trial attorney, Spouse described what followed as some of the best testimony he had ever seen delivered on the witness stand: "He was aware of his audience and spoke to the principal like an adult conversing with an adult - never got overdramatic, never overexaggerated. AND HE NEVER BROKE EYE CONTACT. I am more afraid than ever that he is considering a run for major political office."
During his deposition - excuse me, while he was talking to Principal D - it came out that, after LK returned from the bathroom, the substitute proceeded to put another kid in a corner and taunt him until the boy started to cry. It was at that point that Super LK decided that he needed to take a stand and call the substitute on his thuggish behavior.
The kid he defended? Same kid who bullied LK on the playground.
Like LK said - they're good now.
The substitute has been forever banned from our campus. I'm planning on taking my helicopter seed money to Vegas, because apparently neither of my children will be in need of helicopter parent services anytime soon.
The principal is more convinced than ever that LK can do no wrong. His given name has been permanently shelved: to her, he is, consistently, "my sweet angel."
And LK has officially announced that in next spring's Student Council election he plans to forgo a run for treasurer (he's currently secretary), because "fourth graders can run for either treasurer OR vice president - and the vice president is that much closer to president."
Yup. Just one heartbeat away.