I walked back into my classroom this week expecting to see the posters, drawings, and pictures I had accumulated over my years of teaching still hanging on the bulletin boards that I had left up at the end of the school year. We had been told we didn't need to take anything down off our bulletin boards, as they wouldn't be painting the walls this summer. That was what I expected to see. What I saw when I walked in, was nothing. Everything was gone. My bulletin boards were bare, pictures gone. Posters, gone. Not going to lie, I said a few choice inappropriate words. A friend and I searched my room, going through every drawer and cabinet, thinking that whomever had done this had maybe left everything in a pile somewhere else. After an hour of searching, I told her we should stop. My stuff was gone.
Stuff can be replaced, I know that. What hurt me was that some of those pictures had been drawn by some talented students who have long graduated from South. The picture that made me cry and was like a stab to my heart when I realized it was gone, was the picture of my Chili Dawg, from when he had made the Tripawds calendar the January after he had crossed the rainbow bridge.
I know nothing can be done to get my stuff back. It's gone. I asked the head custodian if he knew anything about it, and he asked his staff, the answer was no. I sent an email to my boss letting him know my stuff was taken, because I was too emotional to discuss it in person. The principal knows, he walked in when we were discussing it. He feels bad for me, but again, there's nothing that can be done.
I feel violated. Why would someone do that to me? I won't ever know. Stuff can always be replaced. At least I have the memories still. So now I move forward, gathering new posters and pictures, and re-decorating my very sterile classroom. What a way to start the new school year.