Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Marco Pollo and Boy Wonder

Marco Pollo was a teacher, but he was always afraid. His supervisor, Boy Wonder, didn't like him very much. That's why Marco had a big stack of letters in his file. Boy Wonder would sit in his office and write all kinds of things. Marco never understood why. Also, Boy Wonder walked around the whole building talking about Marco. Marco did this. Marco did that. Boy Wonder would walk into the men's room and start talking about how awful Marco was. Marco felt bad when he heard about it.

Marco's chapter leader listened to the stories. He told him to file complaints. He said to report him to 311, OEO, and the union. Marco didn't want to do that. He thought it would irritate Boy Wonder. And yet, Boy Wonder kept placing letters in his file. One day, Boy Wonder placed a letter in Marco's file saying if he didn't stop doing what he was doing, he would get fired. Marco was very upset. The chapter leader said to grieve the letter, since Boy Wonder never bothered to consult with Marco about it. Marco thought that was a bad idea. Boy Wonder might get mad.

Marco had to meet with Boy Wonder every week. He had to do all of his lesson plans a week in advance and bring them to Boy Wonder. This was a lot of work. It was really kind of double work, because the lesson plans didn't always end exactly where the next ones began. Marco had to write them all over again. Boy Wonder would walk in and see that Marco was not exactly where he said he'd be, and then write him up.

One day, Boy Wonder decided to call the chapter leader in to discuss issues with Marco. Marco sat quietly while Boy Wonder explained what a terrible teacher Marco was. The chapter leader asked why they were here. Was it just so Boy Wonder could yell at Marco? Boy Wonder said Marco was failing to follow the improvement plan they had agreed upon.

"What improvement plan?" asked the chapter leader.

"This one," said Boy Wonder, producing a pamphlet with Marco's signature on it.

"What was your rating last semester?" the chapter leader asked Marco.

"Effective," said Marco.

"Then why the hell do you have a TIP?" asked the chapter leader.

"This isn't a TIP," said Boy Wonder.

"Yes it is," said the chapter leader. "It's a Teacher Improvement Plan. Teacher improvement plans are for teachers rated developing or ineffective."

It's not a teacher improvement plan," said Boy Wonder. "It's a Teacher Assistance Plan."

"Where did you get that?" asked the chapter leader. "Did you just pull it out of your ass?"

"How DARE you?" said Boy Wonder. "NO ONE talks to me like that!"

Boy Wonder was going to go on, but he started thinking about the five-dollar fill up at KFC. If he started an extended conversation with chapter leader, he wouldn't have time to skip out. Mmmm.. Five dollar fill up.

"Anyway," Boy Wonder said, "it's NOT a teacher improvement plan. It's a teacher assistance plan. It's completely different."

"So," said the chapter leader, "it's not a TIP. It's a TAP."

"Exactly," said Boy Wonder. All was now clear.

"Well it's bullshit," said the chapter leader. "You don't have the right to do that to an effective-rated teacher. Also, the most you get to collect lesson plans like that is never."

Boy Wonder was really angry. His face turned a very deep shade of red. "This meeting is over," he announced.

The chapter leader told Marco to file a grievance, but Marco didn't want to do it. So the chapter leader filed a paperwork complaint and killed the TAP. But he was irritated because he didn't find out about it until March. If only Marco had told him in September he could have killed it right away.

The day he found out his TAP was dead, Boy Wonder left work 90 minutes early. He went to KFC and ate three five-dollar fill ups, but still didn't feel better. So he pulled out his laptop and wrote up an observation of the lesson Marco was teaching right now. Boy Wonder wasn't actually in the classroom, so he had to invent what was happening there. He rated all of it ineffective. It was a good thing he'd had the foresight to just leave work without signing out, so no one could prove he wasn't in the building.

There was no way Marco was gonna have a decent rating this year. Next year, Marco would have a TIP instead of a TAP, and the world would once more spin on its proper axis.
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