Storyteller – Amos 3 November 2013
This is a story about the children in Blue class and their teacher at a Primary school not far from here. It is nearly the end of the summer term, and Mrs Smith the teacher is getting ready to talk to each student about how they have behaved and achieved during the year.
It hasn’t been an easy year for two reasons; Blue class has got lots of challenging children in it and some have been bullying younger children, some children haven’t been coming to school on time or at all. Blue class is also the class that Mrs Smith’s son, Jacob, is in.
Mrs Smith calls in Damascus. She explains that because of her bullying, she is going to be excluded from school and have to go to a different school.
Next, Mrs Smith calls in Gaza. She explains that because he hasn’t been listening or learning this year, he will have to be excluded too.
Meanwhile, the other students are waiting in the classroom, and Jacob is feeling pretty sure that his Mum won’t have anything bad to say to him – he always remembers his homework, PE kit and packed lunch, and always has the correct uniform.
After seeing lots more children whom she excludes for truancy, disobedience and vandalism, it’s Jacob’s turn to see Mrs Smith.
Mrs Smith looks at Jacob. She has a heavy heart – she has worked so hard to make sure he’s there in the classroom every day; that he has everything he needs to learn and grow; she’s written in his planner, she’s given him model answers, and talked lots to him about how to learn.
“Jacob”, she says, “I’ve tried so hard with you, given you every opportunity to learn and grow! I’ve brought you to school, given you books and people to learn from, but you haven’t listened, you haven’t learnt. You think that bringing your PE kit makes you great at PE; you think that by wearing the right jumper and shoes you look smart and are a credit to me and the school! Oh Jacob! These things don’t make you a great student, a fantastic learner; what I want is for you to love coming to school; to treat the other children with respect and honour!
“This is it, Jacob, it’s exclusion for you too!”
When Mrs Smith locked the door, shutting the children out for the rest of the term, she turned to her son.
“It’s going to be a hard few weeks, Jacob”, she said, “But, there will be a new term, and I will unlock this door again. You’ll be coming back, exclusion over, this time to really learn; you’ll be longing to come, and you won’t be excluded any more. We can begin again.”