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Tag Archives: Romier Elementary

Explosive Father

I took a step away from James’s father and moved behind the desk. While keeping an eye on him, I started looking for objects I could use as a weapon.

Lloyd Lofthouse at least ten feet underground in the comm bunker (Chu Lai, Vietnam - 1966).

The reading specialist appeared along with Marshall. They’d heard the yelling. After stopping the father’s tirade, the reading specialist explained that I was not responsible for assigning the book to James.

The specialist then took James’s father to his office. There was no apology for the outburst and the insults. I had discovered where James’s anger came from. He’d inherited or learned it from his explosive father.

I wondered where the father had been for most of the semester. I’d called the house a number of times and left messages. He had not attended parent conferences. In fact, I contacted all the parents when homework wasn’t turned in. I spent hours on the phone running into dead-ends and hearing empty promises from lousy parents.

See Razor Wire

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Razor Wire

In 1976-77, Romier elementary had razor wire on the roofs to keep vandals off. On Mondays, it was common to find fresh bullet holes in the doors. Once, we arrived to find the doorknobs had been beaten off. On another Monday, we couldn’t park our cars in the parking lot because all the lights had been shot out, and the lot was littered with shards of glass.

First Tank Battalion, First Marine Division, Chu Lai, Vietnam

That year, I made a friend with another teacher. The union rep for the school was Marshal Kahan. Soon after I was hired as a long-term sub, he came to the classroom and offered support and advice. During our conversation, I learned he was also a former United States Marine.

We stayed friends for thirty years and hiked the San Gabriel Mountains together for more than a decade before Marshall was diagnosed with leukemia. He died eight years after the diagnoses. I still miss the loss of his friendship.

The other incident is when James’s father came to shout at me, because his son’s reading score had not improved. I was alone the afternoon the father walked in unexpectedly. He cursed and accused me of being incompetent. He threw the reading book on the floor and said I’d put his son in a book that was too difficult. I shifted my body stance so one side faced him. I’d been taught hand-to-hand combat in the Marines and fought in Vietnam. If he was going to attack, I wanted to be ready.

Discover a Square Peg in a Round Hole

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition].

His latest novel is Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to hate and kill Americans.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

 

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Substitute Teaching is not a “Tea Party” – Part 1/3

During the 1976-77 school year, I subbed daily in a half-dozen school districts during the first semester.

Substitute teaching is not easy.

Whoever called first at five in the morning—that’s where I went.

I taught in Arcadia, Monrovia, San Dimas, Rowland and a few other school districts I’ve forgotten. Most of the time, I worked in Rowland Unified in La Puente, where I interned the previous year.

When teachers knew they were going to be out, they requested me in advance and my calendar quickly filled up.

After the Winter Break, I was called to sub at Romier Elementary for a fifth grade class.


Watch the video and discover what it is like from another substitute teacher more than thirty years later.

The teacher had a heart attack and was in the hospital. Two weeks later, the principal offered me a long-term position for the rest of the year. The regular teacher had died.

I thought I knew the reason. Was I going to be the next victim for these diabolical ten year olds?

I named them the class from Dante’s Inferno, and I worried that this would end in another Oscar or worse—I’d lose my teacher’s credential and might end in jail for murder and mayhem.

Continued in Substitute Teaching is not a “Tea Party” – Part 2

_______________________

Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition].

His latest novel is Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to hate and kill Americans.

To follow this Blog via E-mail see upper right-hand column and click on “Sign me up!”

 

 

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