My Turn: Random musings on a June MCAS

  • jacoblund

Published: 6/10/2021 4:35:56 PM

The loading icon for login,

The lack of forward momentum,

spinning and the constant need to refresh,

apt metaphors for this year and its mess.

How do we measure what has been lost

and do we use paper or computer?

Students are finished or finishing up,

one still hasn’t logged in.

The temperature’s rising,

in the room and inside students, biding,

the minutes with nothing to do.

Someone is on the phone with the state.

We hold them until 10

and return them, then,

to their final week of their shop,

And then onto summer vacation.

One student is juggling flip flops.

Cellphones are bagged like evidence labeled

bookbags jumbled with care

in a pile behind at which finished students stare longingly,

except for the one trying to login.

And they are on the phone with the state.

One girl keeps time with the ticking of the clock

Her manicured nails tapping the desktop.

One is writing in code, another making origami boats,

folding squares, doodling, producing paper airplanes.

Day two of four, only two subjects core, science didn’t make it in.

All but one done- just one hour in

plus the student who still hasn’t logged in.

He’s been remote and only today

came in for this all-important state assessment.

Still on the phone with the state.

A student is punching holes in scrap paper

suspended in front of his face

No windows to stare out of

No screens to zone out in

heads hit the desk, and it’s lights-out

And the student can finally login.

At the end of this year, of COVID and fear,

is this the best use of our time?

Counting down minutes until life resumes

Unless, of course, we can’t login?

Jeremy Mailloux, a Greenfield resident teaches English at Franklin County Technical School.


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