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What is the worst thing you have ever done to a substitute teacher?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on June 10, 2005

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Photo of Janelle Peterson

“One time, when a substitute was a minute late for class, we all left.”

Photo of Shannon Hodges

“We made him think one of the students had jumped out of the window at Central Junior High. He ended up calling the principal and everything”

Photo of Brandon Blackburn

“I hit one in the head with a snowball once, and a football, and a drumstick.”

Photo of Zack Johnson

“I just switched names and pretended to be someone else for the class period. I did it a few times, but they never caught on.”

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Comments

GreenEyedBlues 9 years, 6 months ago

A lot of the substitute instructors we had were horribly undereducated, so they did a fairly good job of making themselves look like goofballs without any help from us.

For instance...

A sub once pronounced "crocheted" as "crotch-it-id".

I always cringed when there were tone-deaf warbly ladies subbing for vocal music.

The worst, though, was when the subsitutes were teachers from other departments. The gross ineptitude that some of the faculty displayed reminded me that a degree in education doesn't make one any more well-rounded.

Can you tell I went to a public school? =S

audvisartist 9 years, 6 months ago

These kids don't have anything on my 3rd grade class in Catholic school. We gave a substitute teacher (she was a nun too) a heart attack! Ambulance came and everything... she never taught again after that. Funny when you're a 3rd grader, but not so cool as an adult.

Centrist 9 years, 6 months ago

We had a semi-permanent teacher called Mr. Ward. He was semi-retired and fairly old. He used to read us stories and just ramble on. Our whole class hated that stuff. After school some of us used to throw rocks on his roof and thought it was a big laugh at the time (we were 12 year olds at the time). Later that year they said he wasn't well and would be taking sick leave for a heart condition. About 3 months later he died. We always wondered if we had contributed to that ..... :(

Redneckgal 9 years, 6 months ago

What didn't we do? We actually got so out of control one time in 8th grade we got one fired. We had books flying across the room and someone fired up a joint in the back of the band room but I think the final straw was when one of the boys climbed out the second floor window and was waving at people driving by on Main street Teacher got canned and man did we get in some hot water. Those were the days!

Topside 9 years, 6 months ago

It was a Friday afternoon and we distracted the Sub and turned the clock forward 15 min. So when the time came around we said the bell must not be working. Also, we had a girl plead with him that she couldn't be late for her job after school, so he let us go. It was wonderful. :)

9 years, 6 months ago

To Hong_Kong_Phooey: It is PC to speak of people first. "The retarded kid" is very old fashioned and cruel. You should say the student who has special needs.

tell_it_like_it_is 9 years, 6 months ago

Hong Kong..That gave me my laugh for the day! The rest of you..just lighten up..its Friday! I'm sure we all had a "Special Freddy" in our class we wasn't none to good to if we're honest about it.

acg 9 years, 6 months ago

Oh now don't get all down on HKP. Most kids are mean and nasty and do cruel things to each other and the staff/teachers at school. And anyone who says they never made fun of the special kid or the fat kid or the clumsy one or the one with all the zits is probably not being honest with themselves and the rest of us. We had a sub who was very large and mean and had only one eye. She subbed for us all the time and there wasn't a single class I was in with her that she and I didn't end up into a huge fight. I hated that hateful old woman with a passion and got to calling her Ms. fatoneeyedoldbitch and inevitably I would be suspended for a day or two, which didn't matter at all (suspension is the dumbest punishment ever). I wonder where she is now. Having subs was awesome. It was all about how quickly we could make him/her cry or blow their top.

happygolucky 9 years, 6 months ago

We had an old guy named Mr Bateman that we called Master. And to make it worse, we would cut our voices out to make him think his hearing aid was messing up. That's what happens when you go to a country hick school.

kansas 9 years, 6 months ago

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macon_II 9 years, 6 months ago

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tell_it_like_it_is 9 years, 6 months ago

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Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

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raven 9 years, 6 months ago

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tell_it_like_it_is 9 years, 6 months ago

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Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

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Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

I substitute taught for a year in the Lawrence schools...k-12.

To be honest, I could tell you more stories of things I did, that an administrator would probably look down up, as compared to what the students did.

It's true.

GreenEyedBlues 9 years, 6 months ago

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Jacob Kaplan-Moss 9 years, 6 months ago

Ladies, gentlemen:

Please, let's keep the ad hominem attacks off our boards!

Note that by posting comments you are implicitly agreeing to our comment policy (http://www.ljworld.com/site/reader_reaction_rules.html) which includes an agreement against posting "defamatory" material, "potentially slanderous or libelous comments," or "any other material that infringes on the ability of others to enjoy LJWorld.com."

C'mon, we're all grown ups; let's keep it civil and more or less on topic.

9 years, 6 months ago

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GreenEyedBlues 9 years, 6 months ago

Good show, everyone! I've never seen such a large mass removal of posts before.

simple_simon 9 years, 6 months ago

Wow! What did I miss??!! Like Greeneyes said, I've never seen soooo many posts get deleted in one day before!! Holy cow, you guys!

Topside 9 years, 6 months ago

Yeah, good show people. Next time check your _in' attitudes at the door and watch you __in' mouthes.

Chris Bohling 9 years, 6 months ago

oh wow....

anyway, one time in fourth grade the sub spent half the day trading baseball cards with one of the students. It was funnier then it would of been because the sub was a mom of one of my friend's.

wichita_reader 9 years, 6 months ago

Doggone it! The one morning I decide not to keep the LJW word on the street window open I miss all the fireworks.

Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

Yah, you didn't miss anything but a bunch of "grown-ups" making fun of mentally retarded people. It was really a worthwhile dialogue. I love it when adults show their true emotional age.

tell_it_like_it_is 9 years, 6 months ago

Looks like carmenilla musta ratted everyone out again.

9 years, 6 months ago

Dear Hong_Kong_Phooey: Why is it that you think you can speak for an entire population of people? Is your ego that big?

neopolss 9 years, 6 months ago

Does it really matter what term you use to label them? The fact that you are still classifying them into a separate category really negates the idea of being accepting and compassionate. "Mentally challenged" or "Special" may be nicer sounding, but Hong Kong is right - it is still a classification. Everyone simply wants to use a PC term and completely skirt the reality of it - tell it like it is. The kid is retarded. It's all in how you say it, and the conotation you perceive. Any word can be negative or hateful, it is up to the audience to make it a positive.

LJWorld - again I am disappointed at your moderating and removal of posts. I simply detest the censoreship in any form, and think it is much larger of an individual to leave all discussion open, offensive or not. It's no wonder that I no longer have a subscription.

Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

Yah, I deleted myself, tell_it_like_it_is! What a bunch of smart guys you all are. Maybe we can make fun of people in wheelchairs next. How about the blind or the deaf? Its all fun and games...until someone gets deleted.

kansas 9 years, 6 months ago

I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that for all of you "Hong Kong supporters" out there(including Hong Kong himself), you people don't have any "mentally-challengeg" or "special needs" members in your own family, do you? Probably not. Oh, sure! One of you will claim that you do, but I doubt it. I seriously doubt it!

neopolss 9 years, 6 months ago

It's all in the way you perceive it. I say retarded as a standard term of diagnosis. You say it as a hateful slandoring word. You can call me a cracker, and I will take no offense - because I am. I'd rather be proud of what I am instead of being offended by it. There's nothing wrong with being retarded Carmenilla, you don't need to make them feel ashamed either.

kansas, would you believe me if I said I did anyway. I'll answer that - no. So why bother asking a redundant question that holds no merit?

Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

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Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

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raven 9 years, 6 months ago

Original Bob: Even though I was one of the people deleted I really don't know what happened. HKP story obviously upset someone or multiple someones. However, truthfully I don't remember any cussing, or anything that should have been deleted. In fact, the conversations that are going on now are much worse then what was deleted. So....obviously either LJW staff or a poster decided to get rid of everyone who posted at that time. Sorry I am not help.

Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

Wouldn't you say, neopolss, that the general tone the posters were using in regards to "retarded" people was belittling and offensive? Take me to task all you want, but you are defending people who would make fun of your grandma if she fell in the street. These guys have no compassion or tact. Why do you defend them?

sunflower_sue 9 years, 6 months ago

Holy cow, what did I miss? That will teach me for posting in after lunch on Friday!

My hubby was a substitute for a few years during his "down time" from normal work. Nobody ever messed with him. Poor little angry Brandon would have been swallowing a few teeth (my Hubby is a bit muscular) if he'd of pulled that sort of stuff with him. The hubby did break a desk once 'cause some kids wouldn't stop talking. He didn't mean to. Just slammed his fist down and sort of snapped it in half. Could be why nobody ever messed with him?!?!

Now, knowing that my hubby was a substitute...ya'll don't wanna know what's the worst thing I've ever done to him. Hee, Hee, Snicker!

BTW, you do not need a degree in education to be a sub. I think the current requirements are 30 college credit hours and a teaching certificate...which is kind of like buying a fishing license.

raven 9 years, 6 months ago

Original Bob: Yes I agree, however some of the posts (as I remember) were not making fun of any one with a disability. It looks (with all those deleted) like there was a big crazy disagreement and inappropriate lanuage was used. Although I have been slightly offended by some of the things said not enough to hit that "suggest removal" tab although tempted once or twice. I am not going to try and remove a statement just because I don't agree.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 9 years, 6 months ago

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kansas 9 years, 6 months ago

neopolss, you say why bother asking a "redundant" question? Well, first of all, I'm pretty sure that the word you meant to use was "rhetorical", not redundant. And secondly, I know that someone like Hong Kong (and his mentality, such that it is) would claim to have a brother who is a "retard" (as he puts it) and that his whole family calls his brother a "retard" and that his "retard" brother thinks it's ok.---All in an effort to prove me wrong about my claim that none of you have a mentally challenged family member.

kansas 9 years, 6 months ago

Okay, neopolss? Do you understand now? I know you don't agree with me....but I have answered your question (the one with the ill-fitting/poorly-chosen adjective)?

sunflower_sue 9 years, 6 months ago

Kansas, My eldest brother (I call him my BIG brother even though he's 110 pounds and I can pick him up) is a "Special needs person". I think that's how you put it. He has a muscular atrophy disease (wheelchair bound) and some learning disability. You can hold a normal conversation with him...he just can't do math. He's somewhat of a savant at entertainment trivia, though. Anyway, he's anything but NORMAL!!!!

Believe me, we've heard all the "names" that people want to give him and to tell you the truth, we (as a family) couldn't really care less what anyone wants to call him. (I've certainly been called worse!) He is what he is and we've all come to terms with that. On my big bro's 40th birthday, we threw him a big party and put a sign on him that read: "If I'd known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself!" NOW THAT"S FUNNY!!!!!! He thought it was a hoot (yes, he's perfectly able to think for himself...just can't add or subtract worth a darn) so don't think he thought it was funny 'cause he just wouldn't know any better.

"A rose by any other name........." And you are welcome to call him anything you like...except please don't call him "special" because you don't know him. Only his family and friends know that he's special! (I'd post what us siblings really call him but I'd get deleted for sure!)

(Just a sister posting her 2 cents) Not trying to offend but probably will anyway. Such is life. Oh, well.

Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

T_O_B, it was only a few posters I was referring to, not the group as a whole. I think that the folks who make fun of retarded people would probably think it was funny if some helpless person was to hurt themselves. I don't think its ignorant to think that some people derive pleasure from the suffering of others. A couple of those heartless beasts happen to post here everyday. Thats all....

Redneckgal 9 years, 6 months ago

Looks like to me there are a few to many thin skinned people around here. I mean come on. If you post on this and get a little s**t so what? Isn't that just part of it? If you don't like what someone else says so what? No need to run and have someone else's post taken off.

Ceallach 9 years, 6 months ago

**Happy Friday Carmenilla.

**offtotheright: You summed Brandon up well. The boy has "attitude" written all over his face :)

**The above was as far as I got before going to a meeting that lasted through lunch. I return now and WOW, even the good ole boys and girls are being deleted. It must have been a doozy (thanks sun_sue) of a battle! Probably just as well that I missed it -- although I can't figure out why Carmenilla's first post was deleted.

The idea that "we should be able to post anything we like and if other don't like it they can stop reading" never ceases to amaze me. Posters do have ownership of this board. There are a number of ways that you can start your own blog, free of charge, and have you own little pissing parties there. Thinking you are better because you were born with average or above intelligence is no different than thinking yourself superior because of the color of your skin at birth. If the only way you can feel lifted up is to be stepping on others then you are to be pitied.

kansas: You made a very good point. I have a close family member with muscular dystrophy. He is extremely bright, however by the end of grade school he required special counseling, did not want to go to school -- all because some pathetically insecure (physically able) kids decided to make him their target. They followed him home making fun of his unsteady gait, knocked him down and laughed because he had trouble getting up, and constantly taunted him by calling him retard. He felt so ashamed of his inability to fight back that he didn't even tell his mother until he was so bruised from being shoved down that she knew it was not accidental.

You cannot tell those of us with experience in this area that it is all just kids being kids. Most children do not make fun of others, they may be so afraid of the bullies that they remain quiet, but that is not the same as agreeing with them.

Ceallach 9 years, 6 months ago

Oh yeah, today's topic: I got along fine with subs, it was usually a light learning day and did not have the pressures of tests, etc. The nuns that I knew were far more likely to give a heart attack than have one :) They could snap those prayer beads as adeptly as Indiana Jones wields his whip. As far as suspension goes, that wasn't an option. If we went so far that they called home, we knew what was waiting for us there, the only thing that would have been suspended was my father's belt (and that only temporarily).

kansas 9 years, 6 months ago

Sunflower Sue, with all due respect to you, the term "special needs" refers to the special needs of the person, not the person himself or herself. I am not familiar with your brother's situation/affliction, so I can't comment on it. But make no mistake about it......"Special needs" is a very real term, and it does apply to a lot of people in this world (in terms of what he or she is dealing with).

Carmenilla 9 years, 6 months ago

Ceallach, some people don't EVER want to take responsibility for their actions or their words. I'm sure that is why they love the anonymity of this board. Here they can be the loudmouth "tough guys" they AREN'T in real life.

neopolss 9 years, 6 months ago

Posted by kansas on June 10 at 1:41 p.m. (Suggest removal)

neopolss, you say why bother asking a "redundant" question? Well, first of all, I'm pretty sure that the word you meant to use was "rhetorical", not redundant. And secondly, I know that someone like Hong Kong (and his mentality, such that it is) would claim to have a brother who is a "retard" (as he puts it) and that his whole family calls his brother a "retard" and that his "retard" brother thinks it's ok.---All in an effort to prove me wrong about my claim that none of you have a mentally challenged family member.

Posted by kansas on June 10 at 1:45 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Okay, neopolss? Do you understand now? I know you don't agree with me....but I have answered your question (the one with the ill-fitting/poorly-chosen adjective)?

If the entire crux of your argument centers around my poor use of english language, you are really wasting your time. I use far worse grammer if you care to pay attention. I'm not concerned so much with the spelling or word choice as I am the message that gets across. Obviously you understood it.

That said, Hong Kong still has a point. Whether you disagree with the term used, an individual IS retarded, whether you choose to call them that or not. One can either choose to embrace what they are, accept, and be proud, or choose to be offended and be ashamed to be what you really are.

Original Bob has a point. At some point, even "special needs" will be deemed offensive. I'd much rather drop the PC and say it how it is. Much of the current climate is poisonous. People are angrier and easily rubbed the wrong way. I believe it all stems from everyone trying to be so tolerant and nice all the time. Let's face it. You can't like everyone.

Carmenilla, I see your point. Understand that HKP was probably trolling you hard. I'd say most of what said is said in order to get a rise out of you. It's simply too easy.

Hong_Kong_Phooey 9 years, 6 months ago

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Ceallach 9 years, 6 months ago

Maybe a question about "the worst thing you have ever done . . . ." just brought out the worst in us ;)

Innnywaaaay, weekend posts are usually fairly calm and hopefully we will all return Monday, shake cyber hands and NOT come out fighting :):):)

Since I try not to participate in fights I haven't started;) I will wish you all a great weekend and hope there is still a board come Monday. Come Monday, now that was a great song, ahh Jimmy, I wish I was in the Keys right now.

kansas 9 years, 6 months ago

Neopolss, the "entire crux" (as you put it) of my last post to you was not about your poor choice of words. And yes, I understood what you meant (even if it wasn't stated correctly).

And given your admission of possessing poor grammatical skills, maybe you are a "special needs" person, yourself? Dyslexia, perhaps?

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

Ah I love being a teacher and having summers off!

Cubs 7 Boston 1 in the 5th inning.

I'm on my 4th Old Style and 2nd brat. Keep it up Cubbies!

<>

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

at least you're a NL central fan then!

wichita_reader 9 years, 6 months ago

Although the Cubbies have climbed in the standings, I'd have to say the Phils or Nats are the hottest teams in baseball right now.

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

Wichita--

Both teams have won 9 of their last ten, Cubs have won 11 of their last of their last 14.

Cubs lead the majors in homers...and speaking of which, Greg Maddux just went yard to left field!!!

Cubs 8 Boston 2!!!!!!

Eat it!!

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

You're right offtotheright...

...i was actually thinking that myself!!

Thank you for not suggesting my posts to be removed!

P.S. Cubs 13, Boston 3

wichita_reader 9 years, 6 months ago

Jayhawk226:

I root for the Cubs as long as they're not playing the Royals, so I'm not sure exactly what you offering to eat, but if you're offering me a brat and and Old Style, I'm game. I'll take two brats and six Old Stylies.

Also, hate to bust your bubble, but while the Cubs lead the NL in homers (with 75 plus whatever they've hit today I'm assuming), the Rangers have a comfortable lead in MLB home runs with 94, and the Orioles are second with 85 (that is unless the Cubs have socred all 11 runs on solo homers).

But you gotta love Maddux.

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

You got me wichita...

...but i'll serve ya up some brats and Old Style. The day/night is way young!

Shelby 9 years, 6 months ago

I hate the cardinals....for their domination but most importantly for their fans--"WE ARE THE BEST BASEBALL FANS EVER"--pretentious bastards.

The Royals are pretty hot...6 of last 9....for the Royals anyway.

Sniff.

1derer 9 years, 6 months ago

Anyone read this in the LJW article today? Who still thinks the homeless population is not hurting the people of Lawrence?

Report says $4.7M needed for homeless By Chad Lawhorn (Contact) Friday, June 10, 2005

Lawrence should raise $4.7 million in city, federal and private funds over the next three years to adequately tackle the city's homeless problem, members of a task force said Thursday.

Needs spelled out by the city's Task Force on Homeless Services include a new $2.5 million homeless shelter, and about $500,000 per year to pay for new services such as case managers and mental health professionals to work with homeless individuals.

4.7 MILLION!!!!!

GreenEyedBlues 9 years, 6 months ago

Can I just say that TJMaxx is one of the most disgusting places known to man? I hope somebody got fired for designing some of the shoes I saw in there today.

1derer 9 years, 6 months ago

GreenEyedBlues: The only thing worse than a bad hair day is a bad shoe day!! My condolences.

happygolucky 9 years, 6 months ago

Wow! I just saw the mass deletion. Hope I didn't cause that. Any way, have a great day before the rain hits.

1derer 9 years, 6 months ago

offtotheright, sorry I missed it. Guess all the deletions distracted me and I didn't see it. If a burg like Lawrence needs 4.7 million, how many billions are being poured down that hole nationwide?

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

Original Bob...you have to make your way out to Shawnee off Nieman. My neighborhood liquor store is only charging a mere $5.50 for a 12-pack of the Old Style.

And I can assure you, as a non-frat boy, the taste of the Brew can only be enjoyed by a true Chicago boy. The frat boys and yupps may have popularized it...but I will always equate such fine tasting brew of the North with a good 'ol summer Cubs game. Not puking at a frat party.

sunflower_sue 9 years, 6 months ago

Kansas, It seems as though I have to recant on some things I said earlier:

I called up my "@#$%" big brother (you know, the one in the wheelchair) and asked him:

"If you had to be called something, you know....a cripple, handicapped, someone of special needs, etc....what would you choose to be called?"

He asked me: "What are my choices, again?"

I said: "It doesn't matter. Just make up your own word that describes yourself."

He said: "Normal"

So there you have it. As I said earlier, he's anything BUT normal. But that's what he would like to be called. (By the general public, anyway) Family can still call him "@#$%". I still hate the term "SPECIAL needs"...how about "particular needs" or "certain needs"

Maybe we should ask everyone what they would like to be called. I have some "African American" friends, and some "Black" friends. I know some great "Senior citizens" and some awesome "old geezers". I have several "Native American" friends that want to be called all sorts of different things. Once again, call me whatever you like. I'll take no offense. It doesn't change who I am. If you're a really great friend, you can call me "@#$%*"...and I'll love you for it.

I also agree with TOB. We have PC'd this world ad nauseam.

Jayhawk226 9 years, 6 months ago

I hear ya Bob...stay dry tonight, looks like a dumping of rain is headed our way.

See ya in here on Monday I'm sure.

Fangorn 9 years, 6 months ago

Good Lord! I try to go away for a bit of a vacation, and when I check into the board it's turned into the Romper Room. Thirteen deleted posts right in a row! That conversational string must have swirled a bit as it went down the toilet. I disagree with this censorship. While there are some posters who contribute nothing to the conversation (our caprine canine comes to mind), their posts shouldn't be removed. The only instance I could condone is if a poster threatened another poster. And if it's serious enough to be removed, it should be serious enough to be turned over to law enforcement.

GreenEyedBlues: Too many educators are vomited out of our colleges of education with a lot of educational theory echoing in their heads but very little subject matter expertise. I'd prefer a system where subject matter experts get a light dose of educational training rather than the reverse. Oh, and sorry to hear about your bad shoe day. :(

About the question (I was getting to it eventually!), I don't ever recall being cruel to substitutes. I and my classmates tended to treat most teachers with respect. Of course this was a long time ago. I do remember whistling in Mr. Cates' civics class to make him think his hearing aid was malfunctioning. That I disliked this class so intensely is ironic considering that I'm now a political junkie of sorts.

Fangorn 9 years, 6 months ago

You know, I just realized I'm starting to feel left out. I don't think I've ever had a post removed. I mean just about every other regular poster has been zapped at one time or another.

And does anyone know where remember_username is? I haven't seen him (her?) post lately.

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