Ticket! Ticket! Who’s Got the Ticket?

SATURDAY, JULY 26, 2014

Ticket, Ticket! Who’s Got the Ticket?

Written April 13, 2013
Posted July 26, 2014Ticket

I’ll venture to guess that no teacher has an ISAT story to tell like the one I have to tell!  George (not his real name) is a good boy and a student whom I really like.  Elva, the other proctor, had given George his ISAT ticket to log in.  We write students’ scores on the ticket when they finish, and then we file each one’s ticket.  It is CRITICAL that we get these tickets collected.  Well, when it came time to collect George’s ticket, he didn’t have it.  We looked under his table, under his keyboard, under his computer, had him check his pockets, practically turned the room (and George) upside down.  NO TICKET!!!  George told us with a straight face that he “didn’t know what had happened to it.”

Elva and I knew we were going to be in BIG trouble!  We dug through the GROSS stuff in both trash cans — YUCK!  We were sweating bullets!  We called George out of the classroom he had gone to and had him check his pockets once again.  Still no ticket!  We were as nervous and upset as two cats on a hot tin roof!  Feathers (and trash) were flying!  We checked with the boy on his right.  The boy on his right knew nothing.  The boy on George’s left had already gone back to class.  With earnestness, we called the office and had them locate the “boy on the left” and asked them to send him back to the testing center.  After he arrived, we asked if he knew anything about that ticket.

The boy on the left, much to our RELIEF, said, “Yes, I do.”  (Sighs streamed in unison from Elva’s and my lips!)

“Where is it?!!!?” we cried.

“He wrapped his gum in it,” said the boy, undaunted.

Back to George’s classroom flew I (with the blessed stool pigeon in tow), leaving Elva with the kids who were still testing.

“Where is the ticket?” I asked George once again (just to see what he would say with the boy on the left standing next to me).

“I don’t know,” George answered once again.

Turning to our informant, I instructed him to tell George what he had seen him do with the ticket.  The boy on the left proceeded to look George square in the eye and told him what he had seen.

George put his head down and slumped his shoulders in defeat.

“Where is the ticket, George?” (softly)

George bent down and pulled the gummed-up ticket from the inside of his shoe and handed it to me.

“Oh, George!” I whispered.  “Why did you lie to us?”

“I didn’t want to get in trouble.”

I then gave the normal lecture that one would give at a time like that and told him how disappointed I was because I knew he was a good boy.

George apologized profusely.

I let him go back to class, excused the boy on the left and went to work on the ticket – opening it up, peeling the sticky, goopy, slobbery unrelenting gum off as best I could, and fashioning a new back with another piece of paper so it would not stick to the other tickets.

Mystery solved.  All tickets accounted for.  Elva and I would sleep well.

The next morning, while I was on bus duty, George got off the bus and headed straight toward me with an outstretched arm.

“I’m really sorry, Mrs. Snyder,” he said, as he humbly handed me two folded pieces of paper – one with my name, and one with Elva’s.

After all the students passed by, I opened the unsolicited note and read, “Dear Mrs. Snyder, I apoligize for the immaturness I showed during ISATS.  I should have told the truth right away but I didn’t.  I lied a lot of times.  This experience taught me a big lesson, a difficult way though.  The lesson this experenice taught me was to always say the truth no matter how big the proplem is because the lies don’t lead you to anything.  I feel like I have disappointed you.  I hope you accept my apoligy.”
I told George that I had forgiven him, and that he and I would start that day with a fresh, clean slate.

I love George.

And I love my job.

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