Skip to comments.Buffalo teacher sends note to parents regarding smelly kids, dirty clothes
Posted on 11/26/2013 5:28:22 PM PST by FLAMING DEATH
Sharon D. Perry Dunnigan of the BUILD Academy was disciplined for her note saying, 'Several children aged 3-4 are coming to school (sometimes daily) with soiled, stained, or dirty clothes,' and 'Some give off unpleasant smells and some appear unclean and unkempt,' before urging their parents to 'take care of this matter.'
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Both say that even though they were poor, they never went "dirty". In fact, they had a saying back then for people who equated poverty with filth..."soap is cheap".
does the teacher at BUILD also get in trouble for correcting spelling and grammar?
But the president’s name is B.O.. You expect any better?
Good for her.
“Her clothes are old, but never are they dirty” - Stevie Wonder’s, “Living Just Enough”
My wife grew up poor in Mexico and she said her mom always taught her “cleanliness is the dignity of the poor”
Yes, but, soap is not cheap any more either.
Yep, grew up in extreme poverty ... always went to school with clean bodies and clean clothes. Always had something for breakfast and a sack lunch to get us through the day. My parents often went without supper so that their kids had something to eat for supper.
Times have changed.
>> cleanliness is the dignity of the poor
Thanks for sharing. I like that.
Applies inside the person as well as outside, yes?
When somebody stinks somebody has the responsibility to say so. If it is not the parents, then it will be the teachers. Otherwise, kids will tell them and they are never kind.
>> My parents often went without supper so that their kids had something to eat for supper.
Blessings on them, if they’re still with us. And if not, I trust in GOD that their gain in the next Kingdom will more than make up for their difficulties in this one.
I agree. She’s telling the parents about responsibility and it’s NOT up to the gov school.
Although we lived in a very modest home (about 800 sq. ft), we were on the edge of a nicer development in progress. When we first moved in around 1954, there were two shanty shacks across the street from us where the Sandy families lived. You couldn't ask for nicer, straight-up neighbors,living on the edge financially, wearing patched-up clothes, but cleaner than most of the 'good kids'that rode the bus.
I used to ride public transport in UK and Europe. NEVER could understand why people smelled. Soap and water are cheap!!!!!
‘Cleanliness is the dignity of the poor”
Quote of the year. I shall never forget that.
A great lesson for my Sunday School students.
Aged 3 and 4 children cannot clean themselves...
This teacher did the absolute right thing to shame these so-called parents to do BASIC parenting skills like cleaning their children...and putting clean clothes on them...
I don't know if you're making excuses but the poorest people on the planet, if they have any pride, do their best to stay clean even if they have to make lye soap out of ashes. Ashes are free.
Poverty and filth do not necessarily go together. But poverty and sloth often do.
My grandfather was going to Chicago public grade school back in the 1890s. He told me he could see lice crawling around in the hair of the girl who sat in front of him. He said it was typical of a particular European immigrant race.
I agree. Besides, dollar store soap is still cheap.
I see people who do “extreme couponing” actually get items such as soap and shampoo for pennies or for free.
Worst case scenario, one can ask for help. There’s no shortage of agencies/organizations/good Samaritans who are willing to give people what they need.
I’m sure my grandparents didn’t think soap was cheap, either. Let’s face it...when your daily meal consists of beans and potatoes, nothing is cheap.
But, there are things you can do to save money if you have your priorities straight. For example, my grandmother would save potato peelings and fry them to put on a sandwich for my grandfather’s lunch.
Takes initiative, though. Doing nothing is easier. So is making excuses. And so is getting mad at anyone who points out how you shouldn’t wallow in victim-hood.
“He said it was typical of a particular European immigrant race.”
I heard the same thing many, many years ago. I think I know the “immigrant race” of which you speak, as that was the ethnicity I had heard about. Can’t really blame the kids, though, for the uncleanliness of their parents.
It's sad that kids have to live this way. It's sadder that in Obama's America it's not likely to get any better.
First thing I thought of!
That would make a great bumper sticker, T-shirt or message to just pass around. I'm sure that there are more than a few "lazy" poor who would find that offensive.
I have several friends who came from India. They would marvel at the people here, and say "We lived in squalor, my parents both were born in a hut with a dirt floor, but you know what they did? They would gather grass and fashion a broom, and they would sweep their dirt-floor homes out. They may be poor, but they were never "dirty"".
“Her way of dealing with it was to inform the school nurse who would then speak with the parents.”
It seems to me that it is better to deal with this on a one to one basis.
I grew up in NYC and went to both public and parochial schools on the east side of Manhattan, my classmates included both some very wealthy and some very poor children. (This was one thing that was great about NYC back then.)
I don’t remember anyone being unclean.
I never met a greaser who had grease on him. I also remember, back in 1960, after gym class, when we were all sweaty, the white kids would rater take a beating than shower in the COLD water. The Spanish kids grabbed soap, jumped in and washed down completely. I always respected them for that.
I’ve had a few kids like this in my 19 years of teaching.
One was so bad that my co-workers and I went to the dollar store and bought some sweatpants and socks for him. The nurse would meet him at the door and direct him discreetly to the showers in the locker room. During the day, the nurse would wash his clothes, and at the end of the day, she would call him to her office where he’d go in the back and change into his now clean clothes. If he came in smelling bad the next day, we’d do the same thing.
His parents knew about it, but the boy continued to come to school dirty until the end of the year.
===I think I know the immigrant race ===
I did not say because times and cultures change. The important thing is that is was clearly the culture of a very particular race. That race now has hygiene within the norms of American culture. If they were still filthy, I’d say who they were.
In my youth, on the high plains and Ozarks, there were certain smells which stick with you.
An acrid smell in the homes of the poor. A strange smell on the kids in class.
years later, I found out what it was.
The poor homes had an acrid smell because the man of the family, at night went out and pee’d on the woodpile. I learned this from a Jack O’Connor story of his youth and suddenly I realized that is the smell I smelled so much in the homes of poor people.
When I first saw the movie SARGENT YORK, I felt I could almost smell what the inside of his home looked like. The smell began to go away as indoor plumbing came into fashion.
As for the smell of the kids at school, one day I opened up a box in which I had stored my smokey hunting clothes. The smell of smoke hit me and I immediately got a flashback to my youth when the kids around me in the Ozarks had the same smell on them from leaky stoves.
Then there are the kids who smelt of hog farms or chicken farms. Even a bath won’t get that out. Only by staying away from such places and waiting till the outer layer of skin falls away will that smell disappear.
My school had a slightly different approach. Teachers brought in used clothes from their own households, and the garments were stored in an old unused closet. There was always a huge variety of jeans/t-shirts for both boys and girls.
When a kid came in fi9lthy, and needed clean clothes, the custodian would let the kid shower in his mop washing stall.
This was done without any fanfare and it got the job done.
More and more, schools are expected to do the job of the parent. Sad but true.
I won’t even raise the issue of kids coming to school not having winter coats come December.
“It seems to me that it is better to deal with this on a one to one basis.”.
There are some parents who absolutely will not listen to anyone and are offended at the suggestion that they should take some responsibility for their children.
On the other hand, a blanket letter to all students doesn’t call anyone out directly...the parents who are “reachable” will take action. The ones who aren’t will simply refuse to believe that they have a problem.
The big problem I see with this is that the lady was somewhat less than professional in the way she wrote the letter. Saying the stench makes her not want to work with them or touch them is a bit much. So is the snarky, “Enough said.” at the end. And requiring a signature is a bit over the top, too. Even the parents of the clean kids have to sign it and return it, and it seems like a brow-beating.
A nicely worded professional letter WITHOUT a signature requirement, with a follow up from the school nurse for any who didn’t get the message would probably have been the best route.
Although, having had to deal with such odors on a daily basis before, at times, you’ll do almost anything to try to make it stop...
Indeed. Mrs. 40 taught kindergarten and some of her students, though age 5, were still not potty trained. How does a parent send their child to school at age 5 w/o first potty training them? Many of these kids suffered extreme embarrassment by being known as one who still craps themselves. I always feared for my wife who had to take these kids to the restroom. I feared the day would come when some screwed up kid would attempt to punish her for something, anything, by claiming she made inappropriate contact. It was not her job to take kids to the restroom. I finally convinced her to take or send them to the nurse which she did.
It's a parent's job to potty train their child, not that of the kindergarten teacher.
It was a never-ending battle...Mrs 40 has my complete understanding.
If her school was anything like ours, it didn’t even provide the disposable gloves to do the deed.
Kids were *never* kept home if they had a cold/flu .....lice season in the classroom in May-June was a lovely event that lasted until school dismissed for the summer.
Our school nurse was a complete waste of oxygen...she wouldn’t do her job, but b/c she was of the right *color* she retained her position.
You have my sympathy. The school nurse was invaluable to my wife and the challenges she faced. Without her help who knows.
I can remember back 30 years ago, in Elementary school, kids being talked to and even sent home if they came to school dirty or poorly dressed.
School wasn’t playtime. You showed up looking fairly neat and presentable and there were some strict-ish clothing guidelines you were too follow.
Urban schools in CT are full of administrators who are prime examples of the negative impact of affirmative action.
Laundry soap is cheapish, true.
Get this - because of gross mismanagement, our municipal water bills are now over $200 a month for a family of five. I have a high-efficiency washer, and we all don’t shower every day by a long shot since my kids aren’t teens.
We can stay mostly clean, but what if our health care bill soars several hundred more? We’re probably going to be smelly soon or collect rainwater (if it’s not illegal by then).
Perfectly good deodorant soap bars are 5 for $2.75 at the dollar store.That same mount will buy liquid soap for washing 32 loads of clothes.$2 more for a box of generic bleach powderNo reason to be dirty.Soap that doesn’t sponsor TV shows is cheap ad effective.
It may shock some people but 20 or more gallons of hot water is not needs to wash one human daily.ONE gallon will suffice.You begin by shampooing the hair and not using an excess of shampoo.Then. way the face and work your way to the feet possibly doing the waist area last.Towel off .You are now clean.
I think many posters and obviously the School Board missed the main point in this story.
It is that the School Board didn’t give a flying crap about the health and sanitary conditions of their students, only that someone pointed it out semi-publicly.
If we had more teachers who were that concerned about the welfare of their students, as opposed to School Boards that are Politically Correct assholes, our children might actually learn something in school and at home (such as how to live as a dignified, self-respecting person, and why their parents are such dumb, lazy shits).
Our water is also weird and soft, and it takes extra for rinsing than when I stay anywhere else. But I don’t let the water run in between soaping up and rinsing — maybe it’s our dishwasher. We could try eating off paper towels or something.
It’s pretty bad when a buffalo criticizes your hygiene.
Yes...but the hot water is expensive there...:^)
ha! at the gym i lather up good with lots of the ginger scented soap,
wash meself and my gym clothes and luxuriate for 15-20 minutes.
I meant that as a general comment/advice for people in special circumstances.
The old steel Army helmets served for many uses in the field.
As for dishes,my method is partially fill one sink basin with dishwashing water,scrub the dishes by hand,place in rack, and then rinse off the rackful using the sink sprayer.Probably uses 3 or 4 gallons,tops. Wash greasy dishes last.
I live in the country with a private water system and water conservation has been a lifelong habit.
Public utilities are always setting higher and higher minimum bills.Our electric rates are 6 times the rate of my post-high years AND there is a $20 monthly availability charge before the first watt is used.We use half the electricity as before and still pay 5 or 6 times as much money! Hooking up to the water utility is many thousands of dollars and carries a contractual requirement to NOT use and cisterns,ponds, or other sources of water for any purposes. Now why should I buy chlorinated water for the garden when I have other water?
Watching someone wash dishes with the faucet running a heavy stream right down the drain kind of shocks me;dishwashers and garbage disposals are convenient but one does pay a price .I have neither appliance.
Urban life has a very high minimum cost to my thinking because of high water and sewerage fees,property taxes,utility rates,and so on. Few people in urban areas make use of the rain water (in some places it is not permitted!)even for lawns or gardens(again,food garden may not even be allowed).
All the mandatory and required things demand a rather high minimum income or government “assistance”.
It seems you must run ever faster just to stay in place.
Certainly urban life has its attractions and benefits ;but I’d rather be poor in the country than poor in the city.A wringer washer and a clothesline produce clean fresh-smelling clothes and linens with a fraction of the water but require more labor.
Even better,I’d rather be rich.
No doubt the quasi-independence from the “system” is just one more reason the UN Agenda 21 planners want to crowd everyone but the elite into apartments.
I SO agree! As soon as we can get out of here, we are moving to a place with a well.
We really do conserve water, but the local supervisors got caught up in housing bubble mania and built a multi-million dollar water plant for homes that were never built, so the costs of the new plant are being borne by the existing homeowners. In the last year, our bill went from $50 a month to $200 a month.
2. Health and safety issues should be handled by the administration and/or nurse.
3. A blanket note to all parents on a subject that only concerns a few, will always create trouble.
One was so bad that my co-workers and I went to the dollar store and bought some sweatpants and socks for him.
It was there classroom. Their craft and work was to be respected. I'd turn my shirt out respect for their role in my and other's life. My right to editorial clothing and it's messages had to take a back seat to good manners.
Now these events become school board / legal system / national news.
I think the 24/7 news television outlets are a downward driver on our society.
I prefer to travel than living at home. My wife is a hoarder of things. What would a person need over 150 pairs of socks for? 100 pair of jeans? Hundreds of tops and shirts? 15 staplers? 12 desktop tape dispensers? over 60 pairs of sunglasses? And an endless list of more...........
Americans are weird!