Six at a time they came to me,
last chance at acquiring some literacy;
adolescent, disrespectful, rude,
requiring adjustment to attitude
That first meeting I had to be blunt,
desks in a U-shape, me sitting up front.
Eye contact with each was made,
'You haven't reached this far,' said I,
'Your first year now in junior high,
without realising there's a need
and eventually you will have to read.
This is a sticky circumstance
and I'm offering you your final chance.
Do you know what else- and this is no quiz,
it is also his and his and his ... (me pointing)
No time to be the wise guy, brother.
I won't let you spoil it for any other.
You even look like disrupting my class,
you're out that door and on... (the grass).
Ninety eight % took my words on board.
Learning doors opened...they grasped, they soared.
No point sitting on the fence
as splinters hurt, acquire some sense.
*Fact: in English speaking schools, globally,
one third of children enter high schools
lacking sufficient literacy skills to complete the task.
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