Sunday, May 28, 2006

Something You Learned Outside of the Classroom

That's what I had to write about on the NTE, the teacher competency test that I was required to take to fulfill the terms of my New York certification. This is the story I told:

In 1986, I was working in a very large Bronx high school. One morning, as I was getting off an escalator, I saw two girls involved in the most vicious fight I'd ever seen. I could see tufts of bloody hair scattered over the floor.

The smaller of the two girls was on top. I decided the easiest thing to do would be to pick her up off of the other girl. But when I did that, they both came up, and as the girl I was holding had only her waist restrained, the fight continued unabated, although in a new location.

A small crowd had already gathered, and was slowly increasing. I noticed a very large boy and asked for his assistance. The boy obliged and approached us, but somehow, the small girl I was holding kicked the guy, who fell on his ass and went sliding across the floor.

This was when security arrived, and several guards broke the War of the Worlds into two distinct entities.

I was called to the principal, who, having no recollection who I was, introduced himself to me for the fourth or fifth time. He then sternly warned me that I should never break up a fight, because neither the Board of Education nor my health insurance would take any responsibility for the injuries that may ensue.

I passed the test.
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