on principals abusing their position for fun and fortune

Update: Converge Magazine refuses to publish any of my comments on their blog, so I'm putting enough info here so that it will show up in google queries: The magazine is "ConvergeMag", aka "Converge Magazine", and the principal is Michael Smith, blogger at PrincipalsPage.com - and he is apparently not a principal any more, but is a Superintendent of Oakland CUSD #5 School Board. The article in question is Chocolate Milk Tastes Better When I am Not Being Violated - posted July 23, 2009.

I read a blog post yesterday, by an elementary school principal who described an incident that happened to him. He was trying (very, very hard) to be funny, but the language and his reaction were not what I would have expected from a principal, or of anyone in a position of power and authority in the care of children.


I tried to post a comment on the principal's blog entry, but the editors of the site apparently decided not to approve it for public consumption. No problem. I have my own blog. Here's the comment I posted.

You didn't do a spectacular job of describing exactly what happened, as you were trying so hard to be funny. I don't know the full details, and I've never been a Principal, nor "Mr. Guy Who Always Wears a Tie."

I have been around children. A lot. Mine. Other peoples'. Lots of kids. Kids are sometimes a bit clueless about what exactly they're doing. Sometimes, they think they're being funny, or cool. Sometimes, they're just being plain old clumsy and awkward. Sometimes, they combine for full effect.

Without knowing if the kid intended to punch you in the nads, I can't speak to exactly what happened. I'd guess it wasn't an intentional nut-punch. If it was, then deal with the kid rather than ranting on a blog about it. If it wasn't, then let it go. You're the principal, for crying out loud. Grow up.

And calling this incident "violation"? Seriously? Do you even know what that word implies? Do you know anyone that has truly been violated? I'd bet there are a significant number of people, including the parents of the kids at your school, who would be super-pissed to hear their principal describe what was likely an accident (or at worst, a clumsy attempt to be funny or cool) as violation. You devalue the word, and belittle those who have been violated.

Not cool. Not funny.

Now, I realize that I may have had more success in having the comment published if I'd used honey rather than vinegar. But sometimes you just need to pour a tall glass of vinegar.

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