I got an email Monday morning notifying me that my school had been broken into over the weekend. They had entered the hall where my classroom is located, and went through every room.
Every. Single. Room.
When I received notice of this, I hurried through my morning routine, slammed down a couple more aspirins (I was working on a nasty migraine already) and got there early. I was worried that there would be an horrific mess to deal with and I didn’t want the kids to see it.
Fortunately, the mess had been taken care of, mostly by the police as they had collected everything for evidence. This left the custodian and maintenance folks to clean up the broken glass (every door has a window in it, and they broke those to unlock the classroom doors). But, there were things that had been rifled through (including our personal drawer space where we keep our stuff, snacks, lunches, sweaters, etc) and we all felt violated. Thoroughly violated.
I suppose our room received less damage because when they got in there they looked around and realized this wasn’t an ordinary classroom. There wouldn’t be any fancy computers or gadgets sitting around. There are beginning reader books, pre-school type toys, art supplies more suited for a kindergarten classroom, and a pile of chocolate in one of the cupboards.
The chocolate is there because they frown on us keeping vodka on the premises.
Out of all of this there was some good news. They caught the little bastards red-handed. Minors, all of them, their parents will be forced to pay damages while their little darlings wile away the days in juvenile detention.
Meanwhile, we’re cleaning the room. I’ve thrown out my jar of peanuts because I do not want to eat something that might have been touched by those filthy buggars. We will scrub down all scrubable surfaces, vacuum the floor again, and do what we can to erase the evil that sent us reeling.
And we’ll keep on going because that’s what we do. Our students do not know what happened, and we want to keep it that way. It’s important to us that they feel safe at school. It’s important that they feel they can count on us to keep them that way.
Tuesday will be better.