The Ontario Secondary School Teachers Federation is ramping up its labour action once again. My kids’ after-school clubs and sports have already been curtailed as a result of the  labour action initiated in September and now I have  heard that teachers may refrain from hallway and cafeteria supervision as this activity  is not part of the essential functions of teaching and marking.

Rather than wade into a polemic debate, I thought I would wade into the high school cafeteria instead.

Hey boys, I’m thinking of volunteering for caf duty at lunch at your school, since your teachers may no longer be doing it. Won’t that be swell?

They actually left the room because they could not contain their excitement. So sweet.

 So just because I’m nice and all that, I have created the following Lunchroom Credo for other parent volunteers considering sharing this prominent volunteer position along with me:

I hereby pledge to …

– Hug and kiss my own children as soon as I see them enter the caf [very important].

– Refer to my teenagers by their toddler nicknames.

– Make sure to hand deliver my teenager’s lunch in a brand-new Hello Kitty lunch box (please note: only for boys).

– Dress appropriately by wearing a blouse and skirt with knee-high stockings and Church Lady shoes; alternative attire might include my leopard print leggings, black leather bodice and red high heel boots (in which case exposed bra straps are entirely acceptable).

– Call all teachers by their first names; better yet, make up a few nicknames like Bri-Bri the History Guy.

– Wink at every cute teenage boy.

– Randomly dispense advice about Canada’s Food Guide.

– Reapply lipstick repeatedly and smack lips loudly.

– Pull underwear out of butt crack at various intervals while walking between tables.

– Endeavour to pass gas at least once while walking past the popular girls’ table.

– Quiz every girl who talks to my sons (list of appropriate questions is available upon request).

– Alert all girls to their exposed bra straps, as required.

– Sing along to all the songs playing over the PA system (even if I don’t know the words).

– Remind my children of their after-school wart removal appointment, in front of their friends.

-Share swigs from my flask with the custodian (in other words, set a good example).

This Lunchroom Credo has been well-received and endorsed by all the mothers I know. Somehow, my kids are not quite as enthusiastic. In fact, they are suddenly no longer complaining that I have a full-time job.

It’s fun being a mother, isn’t it? I can’t wait until my prepubescent daughter’s teachers union begin its labour action.

So how do you endear yourself to your teenagers?

26 Responses to The Cool Caf Credo

  • I love it. I can definitely see you as a Caf Monitor. Lately I have began mimicking my daughter’s “huffs and puffs” that she makes when I ask her to do something. I also commend her on exercising her lungs and encouraging me to as well.

    • My daughter screams “NO!” to me in such a way that it sounds like the name “Noah!” She goes ballistic when I ask her ‘who is this Noah?’ She’s only 12. Sigh. The best times are yet to come!

  • I think it’s an awesome plan! It almost makes me wish I still taught!

  • Amazing! I loved this Astra! Your kids are SO lucky to have a mom as concerned, involved and well-dressed as you are!

  • Volunteering suddenly seems like a lot more fun! I think I’ll see if my son would like me to volunteer at his school.

  • Do you think as caf monitors we would have been able to prevent yesterday’s “food fight”? Alex was shocked that I was even able to predict it. I’ve been around South too long…

    • I’m just waiting for the follow up email that confirms the schools are closed because they cannot guarantee the students safety. My dream of becoming a monitor is will soon be shattered…

  • That’s an awesome list! I know you didn’t want to go into this, but why are they refusing this duty? Too much paperwork? I thought it was part of being an authority figure at the school.

    • Yeah, I didn’t want to go into this because it is a fairly contentious issue here in Ontario, and as in any disagreement there are two sides to the story. The provincial government passed a bill in September that imposed a wage freeze, modified some provisions of the teachers collective agreement and took away their right to strike. I see this as a contravention to the Labour Code for the government to pass this bill this but I’ll let them fight that fight. Rather than allow the legal challenge to run its course, the teachers’ union (who absent of this Bill would now be in a legal strike position) have stepped up labour action. First, most HS teachers refused to coach HS sports or supervise after school clubs so most extracurricular activities in the fall were eliminated and many are currently being run by parent volunteers and retired principals. Now the union is asking the teachers to refuse any duty outside of the core teaching and marking including but not limited to caf supervision. Naturally there was a food fight in the caf the first day! Not sure who the union is trying to pressure given that our government is now prorogued until January and I think their efforts on the legality of the Bill would be a better use of their energy. Yeah that’s right: food fight day one, cops and all. the Board is warning that schools may have to be closed if student safety cannot be guaranteed. Both the union and the government’s position is that they are “putting the students first” but so far the students have taken the brunt…. my two cents.

  • Cruel and evil, but I LIKE it… I’m sure my kids would cringe if I told them I was going to volunteer at the school. They prefer to pretend they don’t have a mother, that they are 007 in training sort of kids, well at least until they need help with something or want to eat. I shared this with my son and he made me SWEAR I would never do this – volunteer or torture him in public. Go figure. My mom did it all the time to me.

    • Thank you for sharing with your son!
      I know my kids would be absolutely mortified if I actually volunteered. And to be honest, while my presence might keep the school open at bit longer, am not sure that I could actually guarantee their safety against the pranksters during this labour dispute 🙁

  • I love your lunchroom credo. Can’t decide which I like best. Seems to be tied between using the Hello Kitty lunchbox for boys, and telling your kids about their doctor’s appt for warts. Too funny, Astra!

  • I actually did this once while in my son’s class and caught myself: I licked the tip of my index thumb and began to use it to remove something from my son’s face. It was in slow motion, I could see the terror forming on his face and I refrained from following through. I realize that my mom did it to me…oh gawd….

  • I was thinking thumb and typed index…you know what I mean. LOL

  • Get your vengeance where you can mama! Great list you evil genius you!

  • Great second career idea! I particularly like the church lady attire. Maybe with extra large name tag with emphasis on last name. And pictures of your offspring attached.

    Whoo hoo!

  • I used to threaten to chaperone at school dances. This carried a lot of weight, because I once actually did it. I’d never do it again, but they didn’t seem to know that.

    I especially liked the line about the wart-removal appointment.

    • High school dances seem to be a thing of the past around here. I wonder if maybe it’s because there were too many parent-teenager altercations 😉

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About Astra
Ottawa mom of 3 poking fun at myself, motherhood, and minor hockey! I am steering through life dodging stinky hockey gear and empty wine bottles.
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