And AWAAAY We Go!!

From Betsy this afternoon; again, completely unedited by me:

 i did the assignments plus handed you drafts you never got back to me on any of them. so how am i supposed to know if there good or not. An F is a little harsh. I am contesting this because i thinks its a bad call on oyur part.

(my favorite bit of that is “because I thinks its a bad call on oyur part.”)

I’ve not yet had the pleasure of student contesting my grade before; this will be an interesting adventure.

I have several things working in my favor: the truly substandard work that this student did, the fact that she was only occasionally in class, the fact that she handed in most of her assignments late (without arranging with me, as Last Minute Larry did, for their acceptance), and the fact that she is one of only three students who were unable to make the cut.  That nineteen other students managed to work to the standards of the class ought to be evidence enough that the failure wasn’t mine as an instructor.  That I was willing to work with Last Minute Larry – and that he managed to pass as a result of our negotiations – speaks to the fact that I’m not an intractable bitch with unreasonable standards.  Still, it’s unnerving to be challenged like this.  I’m astounded that her opinion (fantasy, really) of herself is so skewed that she actually thinks she stands a chance.

The Dean of Academics is someone I admire and respect.  He’s tough, he’s pragmatic, and he believes very strongly that all our students need a solid foundation in literacy skills – stronger, even, than they’re currently getting.  He’s a big supporter of the General Education department, and I’m not at all concerned that this is going to be adversarial.  I’ve done my job – perhaps not as well as I would have liked, given the circumstances of this term, but I’ve not committed any reversible errors.

I’ll keep you all posted.




Filed under composition, concerns, failure, frustrations, General Griping, hybrids suck, I love my boss, Learning, self-analysis, student chutzpah, Teaching, Yikes!

6 responses to “And AWAAAY We Go!!

  1. I’ve had one student contest a grade. She did a dismal job on the final – ended up with a C instead of a B. She went to the dept. chair and filed a complaint that I “had something against her.” She claimed that I had taken 1 extra point off a question (I had -4, revised it to -5 as I was working on it), and she thought that was the difference between her 79.0 average and an 80.0.

    First of all, the fact that she can’t do the math must have tipped someone off. So the dean asked me to go back through the exam and show all of the places where I could have taken even more points off but didn’t. Then he had another professor do the same.; someone who didn’t have anything “against” the student.

    Student was not happy. Student took it higher. Filed a grievance. During the “fact-finding,” several other professors came forward telling about how this same student accused them of having something “personal” against her. So, it was all dropped. She was told she wasn’t grad school material, and her application was denied.

    But, Lord. That was the first (and not last) time, a student almost caused me to quit teaching.

  2. Hang tough, Mrs. Chili!

  3. Oh Chili (and Seester), I can’t tell you how appalled I am at the cajones these modern-day college students have! I finished EARNING my bachelor’s in ’97 and my master’s in ’99, so it hasn’t been all that long ago since I was in school. However, the attitude of the average college student is a lifetime away from the one I and most others in my classes had back then.

    I guess that’s what happens when kids are told all their lives that EVERYONE deserves to have a college education. The problem is that no one told them they would have to work to get it.

  4. What an idiot! It looks as if she spends more time texting than thinking! I think you should print out all of her e-mails, proof them in pretty red pen and submit them to her permanent record.

  5. What a delightful way to begin my day! Thanks for the laugh, Mrs. Chili! I’m sure you’ll prevail–oyur cause is righteous.


  6. Ridiculous. She doesn’t stand a chance.

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