My First Day at Public School

My First Day at Public School

Daily Prompt made a suggestions to write about your first day at something. I decided to write about my first day at public school.

From first grade up until half-way through my eleventh grade year I attended a small private Independent Fundamentalist Baptist School and Church. The girls wore dresses that had to be at least 2 inches below the knee, slits could only be 3 inches long and could not go past the middle of your knee ( I think they had to be in the back of the dress too.) Dress shoes and nylon hose and slips and bras. A girl or woman MUST be fully covered. No pants. No jeans. Denim was not aloud (though at one point in time it was). Makeup very, very light to the point of not being noticed. No hair dye. Nail polish is acceptable but no bright colors. Pastels only. The guys wore button-up shirts and ties. Nothing fancy, no bright colors. Black socks and dress shoes. For sports the girls had volleyball and cheerleading. The boys had soccer and basketball. I was a cheerleader. Our uniform consisted of culottes (if you don’t know what that is it is like a skort but pant length a mock turtleneck and a vest. Religion was a big part of school and church was required as well.

Half-way through my junior year me and my sister switched schools to attend the local public school. The reason for this change was my sister wanted to be a mechanic and could take mechanics classes through the public school and could not through the private school (girls could be teachers and homemakers (stay-at-home-moms) and nothing else).

My first day at the high school was very stressful. The school that I had gone to had a total of 60 kids between ninth and twelfth grade. This high school had like 500 kids between ninth and twelfth grades. The old school had like 4 or 5 classrooms that we rotated classes for. This school had two floors and a whole building of classrooms to rotate with.

I managed the first part of the day to get from class to class okay with little help. The only people I knew were my sister (in ninth grade) and my best-friend/neighbor who was in tenth grade. The schedule was different from what I was used to because at the old school we had 8 classes a day with a specified lunch time, here they had 4 classes a day and from what I could see from the schedule I wondered when I was supposed to eat lunch.

I show up for my English class, which was the only class I had EVERY day. I did not realize the significance of this. I walk in the door to the classroom (once I found it) and ….no one is THERE! Crap. I wonder if they had a field trip or something today. I have no idea what to do.

This little old lady comes up. “Can I help you?”

“Uh. I think I am supposed to have English class here but no one is here.”

“Why aren’t you at lunch?” she asks.

“Well the schedule said I am supposed to be here.”

“You are supposed to be at lunch. Why don’t you know this? Where were you last semester?”

“I was at a different school.”

“Where were you? It wasn’t were you were supposed to be. Otherwise you would know you are supposed to be at lunch.”

(I am about ready to cry)

“I wasn’t here. I was at a different school.”

“Now is when we go to lunch. After that we have class.”

“Uh. Ok.”

I went to the cafeteria (we did not have one at the old school), ate my lunch and then a bell went off and I went back to the English class. They were reading The Adventure of Huckleberry Finn. YAY. (sarcastically) We read that in my English class so many times I had the book memorized. The teacher (the little old lady from earlier) handed me a copy of the book. I tried to give it back. She said I had to keep it.

I never opened that book. It stayed in my locker until we were done and I passed every test and quiz on the book.

The rest of the day went well.

The next year I had the teacher for Speech class and talked about the differences between the two schools and that day the teacher almost made me cry. She remembered that and did not know I almost cried that day. After the speech she told the class that SHE was the evil teacher who almost made me cry. She was joking with me though obviously I did not and still do not understand her humor.

I graduated from that school but am so glad I do not have to go back.



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