Have you ever been watching your favorite TV program when suddenly it's announced that the main actor is going to leave the show?
All too soon, it then seems the show's quality starts to decline. A few examples come to mind: "The Office," "Downton Abbey" and "Two and a Half Men."
I have slowly come to realize that being in school with a substitute teacher is exactly like that.
Especially now, at the end of the school year. During the time you're supposed to be reviewing for end of level testing, but you can't, because your teacher is off having a baby or nursing a broken hand.
Either way, I've been under a lot of stress recently.
I remember in kindergarten when my teacher was gone for the first few months of school, taking care of her baby. Everyone in my class grew to love the substitute, because she was funny, nice and never yelled at us. Then our actual teacher came back, and she seemed the exact opposite of the substitute. With all the disruptions and confusion, I feel like I didn't learn as much. To this day, I feel like I didn't learn my ABCs properly.
In fourth grade, my teacher needed surgery on her toe, and everyone was so sad when she left. It was only supposed to be for a little while; however, what we considered a "little while" ended up being about three months.
While the substitute teacher we had was very nice and easy-going, I didn't learn anything for the rest of the year. In fact, at some time during those three months, we had to have a substitute for our substitute. When our actual teacher returned, my class suddenly had to cram three months of work into about two weeks as we were preparing for fourth-grade finals.
Often times, substitutes seem like they are afraid to discipline the class if the students get out of hand. Now, believe me when I say that I would like to not be disciplined at all, but this attitude seems to give others students in the class an excuse to be more disruptive than they might be while the teacher is in the room.
This even happened in my AP European history class this past month. While my teacher, who usually manages to keep everyone quiet, was gone taking care of her newborn, my class become very irresponsible and disruptive. The class even managed to convince our substitute to let us watch "Les Miserables" all week instead of learn about the 1848 Revolutions. It was great, but we were also a little behind for that AP test.
I realize this may be a bit extreme, but would it be at all possible for teachers to save all of their disasters, accidents and pregnancies until the summer? I mean, after all, our education is on the line.
Olivia Andrus is a sophomore at Ogden High School. She enjoys traveling, playing the piano and king-sized Kit-Kats. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.