There Snow Way I’m Taking The Fall For This

, , | Learning | April 3, 2013

(I’m teaching a class of seven kids between the ages of seven and thirteen who are all brand new skiers. The oldest kid has refused to listen to me and is interrupting me while I’m trying to explain to the other kids how to do the exercise. This happens at the top of a hill, where there are two other classes as well as the lift attendant.)

Me: “Okay, so for this run, we’re going to play a game called ‘Red Light, Green Light’—”

Student: “That’s a baby game! I’m not playing that!”

Me: “Jack, it’s going to be more difficult because we’re on a steeper slope this time.”

Student: “Well, I’m not going to do it! Screw you! I don’t need f****** ski lessons!”

(The student takes off down the hill, ignoring me shouting at him to stop and wait. He crashes into a kid from one of the younger classes, who falls and starts crying. He ignores him and continues recklessly down the hill.)

Other Instructor: “Did he just take off?”

Me: *frustrated* “Yes.”

Lift Attendant: “I’ll radio down and ask them to keep him there until you get to the bottom of the hill.”

Me: “Thanks.”

(We start heading down the hill and we find my student standing with his mother, who is yelling at a Ski Patroller and my supervisor.)

Mother: “She should be fired!” *pointing at me* “She let my baby ski off on his own!”

Ski Patroller: “Ma’am, from what the attendant at the top has told us, your son refused to listen to the instructor, and also injured another student on his way down.”

Mother: “He would never do that! She just can’t teach; I want her fired! She can’t be trusted with the safety of other people’s children!”

Supervisor: “Well, she’s been teaching here for five years, and we’ve never had a problem before. If you remember, I spoke with you yesterday about your son’s refusal to participate and follow instructions, as well as the rude language he was using around the younger students in the class.” *waves me over* “Can you please explain what happened at the top of the hill?”

Me: *explains what happened*

Supervisor: *to me* “Good work. I’m sorry you had to deal with this.” *turns to the mother* “Either you teach your son some manners, or you teach him to ski yourself. I’m not putting my employees through this; they’re all good workers and they deserve to be treated better.”

Mother: *embarassed* “Well, we’ll just go to [other ski hill]; they know how to teach kids how to ski!”

(She storms off, pulling her son behind her who is struggling to get away from her.)

Ski Patroller: “I think I’ll give my buddy over at [other ski hill] a heads up about those two; they’re f****** dangerous.”

(Later, I received a huge thank you and a bonus for not snapping at the mother or the student.)

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