DATELINE: WEST VALLEY SCHOOLS, 4/20
High school students in the West San Fernando Valley were remarkably and inexplicably well-behaved today, notes an official with the Los Angeles Unified School District.
|Havemeyer. Photo: LAUSD
“Usually I get reports of fights, insubordination, vandalism, truancy — the ‘Big Four’— but today was particularly light in all those areas,” says Dr. Ernest B. Havemeyer, superintedistrator of LAUSD’s West Valley district.
“There was significant tardiness, yes. Most students meandered in at their leisure and didn’t seem to be particularly worried about the consequences. But aside from a few other unexplained incidents, it was a good day, albeit a strange one.
Teachers at El Camino Real High School in Woodland Hills reported a lot of eating in the classroom — despite rules to the contrary — and occasional and sustained outbursts of giggling among some students seemingly unprovoked by anything the teachers or anyone else did.
Says Chatsworth High physics teacher John Russo, “I was explaining the Twin Paradox and everyone in the class was just completely enraptured and fascinated by the concept. We spent forty-five minutes discussing it, and then someone noticed a fly buzzing against the inside of a window and [the class] fixated on that for the rest of the period. Which was fine by me, because I had some more levels of Word Cookies to complete.”
Across the West Valley, the school day ended as it began, with students lazily drifting out of school anywhere from ten minutes to more than an hour after the last bell. “I had to literally beg a group of students to leave a classroom so I could mop the floor,” says Reseda High School custodian Frank Helupka. “They were just staring at a pencil sharpener.”
|Whoa. Whoooa, man. Whoa — seriously. Wow, right? Image: Huh? Like Whoooa.
High school sports, too, were affected by the students’ unexplained behavior. The Canoga Park Hunters baseball team had a game against Sylmar at Lanark Park today at 3 p.m.
“It was the strangest thing,” notes Berta Dorchek, who was being walked by her pit bull through the park. “I don’t know who was winning or losing or what, but at exactly twenty minutes after four, both teams just sort of wandered off the field to the skate park area and started hanging out with the kids there.”
“It’s just nice to see everyone getting along, you know?”