Tag Archives: Last Day Of School

School’s Out. . . For Summer!

Yeah, dudes. Today is the last day of school for students and teachers who are part of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School system.

Which means that Hyper Lad and I are free for the next couple of months.

Well, really, Hyper Lad is free. I’m just sad.

As you might remember, I’ve been working as a Title I Tutor at Awesome Elementary here in Charlotte for the past almost complete school year. And, honestly, I don’t remember when I’ve had a more fun work year.

It was a treat, a joy, an appallingly wonderful experience to interact with these little dudes and dudettes, their teachers and the school in general during this school year. I really had a hard time holding it together over the last week or so as I considered that this might be the last time I see some of them.

The deal is that the funding for my job is from a federal source, which means it’s not the most stable source around. It could have been offset by the state, but it’s cutting more than 400 teacher assistant and tutor positions around the state in the coming school year. Personally, I think that’s extremely short-sighted. They’re exchanging a happier future for a slightly more solvent present, all so they can avoid making the hard choices like antagonizing their major campaign contributors by making the rich pay their fair share.

I’ll get down off my soapbox now. Sorry.


With the funding for my position gone, so am I. Which means I won’t be around to watch as the younger kids keep growing and learning and turning into young men and young women. I won’t get to watch the fourth-graders prepare themselves to become middle schoolers.

I enjoyed working with all of these students, but there are a few that will remain my favorite. These are kids who really worked hard, who had a spark in their eyes, who loved to learn, or learned to love it. These are the kids who had to overcome even more obstacles than did most of the kids at this mostly-poor school.

I watched them overcome so much, and helped as much as I could. And now I’ll not get to see them as they keep working and keep growing.

Oh, I will be back at least a little bit. I mean, I just can’t go cold turkey. But I’ll only be there as a volunteer and not there as a worker or someone who sees them everyday.

Still, I can’t thank the teachers, students and administrators from Awesome Elementary (known in it’s more everyday guise as Huntingtowne Farms Elementary School). I really feel like I should have been paying them over the course of the year. I’ve come to care about them more than I ever thought possible. Come to depend on seeing their smiles and hearing their voices.

And, for me, as of today, they’ll all be gone.

I don’t pretend that any of them will really miss me, or wonder all that much about me come next year, but they will be on my mind. Dwelling in the small space they dug for themselves deep in my heart.

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School’s Out

by Richard

School’s out for summer!

I’ll pause here to allow the cheers and screams and sheer undulations of joy to subside from the young dude peanut gallery that’s now got far too much time on its hands.

All done? Good.

Anyway, it’s an odd last day of school here at Casa de Dude. Sarcasmo bounced back from college during the first semester of last year, so he’s been out of school. Zippy the Monkey Boy went to a private school and had all A’s in his classes so didn’t have to study for or take final exams so he’s been out for several weeks and only had to go back to school last week to graduate.

It’s only Hyper Lad who’s counting today as the official first day of summer. The price we pay for allowing them to get older, I guess.

I still say we should dip them in amber sometime around six or so. That way, they never have to get into that cynical or sarcastic phase in which all parents are idiots and the world stinks. And we never have to deal with pre-puberty and puberty mood swings.

Unfortunately, every time I bring that up, people start looking at me strange and I get a visit from child protective services.


It’s been difficult to keep Hyper Lad on task these last couple of weeks, what with his brothers home and not doing any sort of school. He is seriously ticked off that he can’t stay up late and sleep late and not go to school. Not that I blame him, of course. I mean, since his End of Grade tests have ended a couple of weeks back, he’s been doing — essentially — nothing of value in school.

Still, it’s something all school-age dudes have to suffer through.

Now it’s all over. School’s out for the summer, so no more eight hours of school each day, and the young dudes get to stay home all the time.

Which is something all parent-age dudes have to suffer through.

Even with a house full of young dudes, all filled to the brim with a horrible concoction of hormones and energy, there still is something worthwhile to cling to: only a little over two months until school starts again.

Nah. Just kidding. I love having them home. I don’t have to harangue anyone about homework or tests or projects or getting up on time to get to school.

And I get a little more face time, another vanishingly small unit of time before they’re out of the house (hopefully) for good.

So school’s out and it’s time for fun.

Well, they get to have fun. For parents, it’s just more of the same. Only hotter. With more kids underfoot.

Don’t trip.

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Freedom’s Just Another Word For Nothin’ Left To Lose

Today’s the day. The very last day of school. Well, it’s the last day of school for my youngest little dude. The middle little dude already got out, since he was in a private school, and the oldest little dude didn’t go to the last two days of his school, since they were make-up test days and those who weren’t making up were just wasting time. All of which means I can kiss whatever freedom I once had good-bye.

I will say, though, it has gotten better as the little dudes have gotten older. They’re not only old enough to stay by themselves when I’m off running errands or the like, but I’m actually contemplating the quickly nearing day when my oldest will be able to drive on his own and start running errands while I laze around at home, watching my stories and eating bon-bons. Or something like that.

Years ago it was much worse. I had to take the little dudes with me whenever I went out, making it a major deal, and I had to deal with the three of them underfoot at almost every second of the day. I ended up staying up far too late every night just so I could get some time alone to get a little writing done. Which meant I wanted to sleep late, but, with three little dudes running (and I do mean running) around. . . Well, let’s just say that sleeping late wasn’t really on my daily agenda.

Day camps were a god send. When the little dudes were really young, I’d drop off the two older little dudes at a local day camp and then have only the youngest during the day. That made things much, much easier. Now things have changed a little. The oldest little dude is too old to go to sleep-away camp, so I’m sending the youngest two. It’ll be . . . different . . . having only Sarcasmo (my own little pet name for the dude, seeing how sarcasm seems to be turning into his super power) at home. I’m actually looking forward to spending a little quality time with him.

Still, this is a tough day for me. It’s the last summer break before my youngest little dude will start his last year in elementary school. When the little dudes go to middle school, that’s really the end of my seeing them at school. In the elementary school, I can be around as much as I want. Right now, I volunteer in P.E., help in a reading program and an art program, and am a chaperone in field trips. All in all, I sometimes feel like I should get paid for all the time I’m at the school.

It’s tough, really. I’m torn between being happy I’m going to have more time with the little dudes and apprehensive that I’ll lose what little time I have to myself. Still, I think I come down on the happy side. I know they’re not going to be here for much longer and I’ve got the rest of my life to be away from them. Geez, I’ve never thought about it that way before.

Now I’m depressed. Thank a lot. I think I’m going to go have a lie down now.

Anybody got any bon-bons?

— Richard

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