In Teaching on Poverty Rock, Joby McGowan makes fun of demanding parents who plagued his first year of teaching second graders on the decidedly unpoor Mercer Island, Washington. Susan Paynter of the Seattle Post Intelligencer writes:
One parent accused Joby McGowan of causing a tumor in her second-grader’s brain by using a timer in class.
Another told the newly arrived West Mercer (Island) Elementary school teacher that, at 6 feet 6 inches, he was “too tall” to teach little kids.
More ordinary e-mailed outrage rained, too, on the lofty head of the transplanted Iowan during his first year among the motivated moms and dads of “Poverty Rock.” That’s the nickname for “this sceptered isle, this other Eden” east of Seattle, supposedly long on folding green and high on aspirations for its heirs.
“Mr. McGowan” was unpatriotic because he forgot to say the Pledge of Allegiance the first week of school.
He scheduled snacks too early or too late. He gave too little homework or the wrong kind. And, in the gold standard of all complaints by edu-consumers, he failed to challenge their children.
The teacher’s second year turned out much better, writes Paynter.