Tuesday, October 16, 2007

The Counseling Room

At my current school they have this room located on the first floor between the toilet and the printing room. In it there is one table and six chairs. The room has no windows, the door has no glass, it looks like an FBI interrogation chamber kind of like the room where Agent Smith interviews Neo in the movie, "The Matrix."

I have on two occasions, one of those two being yesterday, seen the insides of that room while children are being "counseled" not by a school pyschologist or even a guidance counselor, but by the math teachers, music teachers, PE teachers, and just about any other kind of teacher. We do have a counselor who comes to the school once a week. He is an old fart, about 60 or 70 years old. He wears a suit and drives a racing striped Mini Cooper. He doesn't look very much like a counselor and I have seldom seen him engage students. Basically he just dwaddles in the teacher's room and occasionally he counsels some of the more seriously mental children.
That leaves 4 other days of the week open for ordinary teachers to act as certified, trained counselors. As I said, yesterday when I was heading for the toilet I happened to walk by the room and just glanced in at the characters inside. What I saw was quite peculiar.
In the room were six to eight students all sprawled out in the floor, laying across the table, with their clothes looking like they had all just played a rousing game of twister. They were all male including the social studies teacher who was standing over these soon to be dropouts. There were papers, bags, books and all sorts of things scattered all over the room. It looked as if a tussel had broken out.

Unfortunately I didn't get to peek in for very long, but this glimpse of the counseling room was enough to make me question what exactly was going on in there. As soon as I walked by the teacher closed the door with a loud thud and I continued on about my business but it sure left an odd impression on me. I hope it wasn't a bout of physical punishment or something more serious like a sadistic sexual episode. My gut tells me it was the former rather than the latter.

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