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Tag Archives: Nogales High School

HEPA Filters Do Not Work Miracles

I brought in the first HEPA air filter on the third day.  That lonely machine chugged away keeping the air somewhat breathable while custodians and building services struggled to discover where the stench was coming from.  One man thought maybe a sewer line ran under the building and had broken.

By the end of the week, the stink was outpacing the HEPA filter. I started buying more until there was four humming away losing the battle. Now, I had a noise problem too. With the HEPA filters humming away, most of the kids couldn’t hear me, and I couldn’t hear them—maybe a blessing in disguise.

We abandoned the classroom and fled to the school library (see school libraries quietly rock) leaving the workers behind to solve the problem.

This tale of a tail will conclude with The Guilty Dead—the last post for this smelly story.
The first post for this tale of woe was Teaching is a Smelly Art.

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Innocent Math

On the second day, I started to suspect that the smell might be coming from the math class next door.  Since math was a “pure” subject, I didn’t think it could smell but …

Then the math teacher fled with her students.  She had immigrated from Vietnam and didn’t weigh a hundred pounds, but her students were terrified of her—accent and all, which might explain why the Vietnamese defeated the Japanese, the French and America while fighting wars with China before and after all the others. I’ll tell you some of the creative things she did to maintain classroom control another time.

When she left her room, she stuck her head in my room and stared at me with an accusing, killer look that all teachers who survive must develop. The white strip down my back grew longer.

This tale of a tail will continue in HEPA Filters Do Not Work Miracles—the next post.
The first post for this tale of woe was Teaching is a Smelly Art.

 

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Sewer Teaching is a Smelly Art

Teaching in a sewer is sort of like being in a volcano—impossible to escape the heat. Who said teaching wasn’t like a real job?

One year, I returned to Nogales High School from the Winter Break (what used to be called Christmas—this change came about due to a court case linked to political correctness) and the classroom smelled of death. In no time, it felt as if I had grown a white stripe down my back.

Industrial Pollution

When my first period arrived, the first kid in the door asked, “Mr. Lofthouse, what did you do?”

“It’s not me.”  I protested, but no one listened—nothing new there. Rumors spread and kids went out of the way to avoid me in the hallways.

In another period, a girl said, “Take a bath, Mr. Lofthouse.” She pinched her nose and went outside refusing to return. I picked up a referral and told her I would give her a tardy and send her to the office. By then, most of the students were in the room–some complaining.  A fortunate few could not smell anything—the benefit of a stuffy nose.

Any one tired of reading my tale of woe may want to visit Australia at Teacher Challenges.

This tale of a tail will continue in “Innocent Math”—the next post.

 

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