The next morning, I got to school and waited in the media center for the staff meeting. Angela was talking to me about our upcoming field trip and the gripes she was already getting regarding the ten dollar cost of the trip. We have to pay the bus company and the farm wasn’t about to let us invade their place of business out of the kindness of their own hearts. Some of the kids were on free and reduced lunch. The school would pay for them, but the rest of our classes needed to pay the fee or not go.
Alice walked in and she looked very upset. We all quieted down, waiting for her announcements. “First off, I want to start the staff meeting with a good note. We have less than thirty school days left.” The staff erupted into cheers. “However, I have to tell you some bad news. Robert Banner had a massive heart attack last night.” The cheers turned to gasps.
“Is he alright?” asked one of the fifth grade teachers, Mrs. Drozd.
“He’s in intensive care at Port Angeles General,” Alice replied. “From what his longtime companion, Shelly Cope, told me, if he makes it, he will not be coming back. Obviously, we need to keep Mr. Banner in our thoughts and prayer so that he can recover to enjoy his time with his grandchildren and Shelly.”
“Who’s going to take over for Robert?” Lauren asked, arching her back and trying to make herself look even sluttier.
“I’ve got several staff members who have received their administrative degree,” Alice answered. “And yes, I know you’re one of them.” Lauren smiled. “I’ll be discussing it with Dr. Gardner, preparing a list of prospects within the staff. If you are interested in stepping in for Mr. Banner, let me know or any of the ladies in the front office. Any questions? No? Good. We need to work together as a team, Puddle Jumpers.” She nodded, turning brusquely and leaving the media center.
Angela and I left, both shocked at the news. I walked into my room, going to write up my agenda. The door closed. “You have to be my AP,” Alice begged.
“Holy crap!” I screeched. “Alice, what the hell?!”
“Bells, out of everyone in the staff, you’re the only one who actually received a quality masters degree in Educational Administration,” Alice wheedled. “I’ve talked to Dr. Gardner and you’re hired. It’s all political bullshit with the hiring committee.”
“What about my class?” I asked, gesturing to my room.
“Long term sub. Bella, please! I do not want Lauren Crowley as the assistant principal. She’d sleep with all of the fathers,” Alice deadpanned. “If she hasn’t already.”
“Why don’t you fire her?” I questioned.
“Daddy’s on the school board,” Alice grumbled. “Hank Mallory provides a lot of money to the school and is an advocate for the art’s program, but that would all go away if his precious little Lauren loses her job. Skank. She’s a decent teacher and does well when she’s observed, but her grades for her master’s program were awful. She barely passed. You, on the other hand, top of your class?”
“Let me consider it,” I sighed. “Put my name down, but I do not want to be handed this job. I want to be treated like everyone else. Interview me. Read my resume.”
“Okay, okay,” Alice said. “Though, I know you’re going to be my adorable sidekick.”