An area third grade class prepared written apologies yesterday for their new substitute teacher, Jared Phelps, who spent one afternoon filling in for full-time teacher Mrs. Heddle after she abruptly resigned her position at the elementary school earlier this week.
Third-grader Will Irwin, a spokesman for the 17-child class, acknowledged that “we took advantage of Mr. Phelps’s inexperience, and our criticism toward him was in no way justified by his inability to summarize the plot of any of the High School Musical” series of Walt Disney movies.
Ranging from ages 8 to 9, the third graders crafted a hand-written apology to Phelps when prompted by school administrators. The students said they planned to behave much better the next time he came to the school, and were “extremely sorry” for their behavior, in particular, not listening to Phelps’ instructions, talking too loudly, running an illegal off-track betting operation during a science lesson, wrestling, manufacturing fake voter registration cards, singing songs with explicit lyrics during music time, failing to remain seated when the lights were turned off, and BASE jumping off of desks.
Also, by writing the letters, the pupils believed that they have “minimized the risk” that Principal Carter will make good on his threat of no recess for the rest of the week.
Phelps told reporters that he will no longer accept substitute teaching jobs, and has contemplated leaving his wife and newborn son just to be certain he will not be responsible for watching a third grade student ever again.