This following is a post-hire Q&A with an unsuccessful candidate for the job of high school principal.
Candidate: Thanks for allowing me this follow-up.
Board: Our pleasure.
Candidate: I honestly don’t understand why I didn’t get the job. I practiced for the interview, my résumé shows my unparalleled experience, I wore my lucky pantsuit.
Board: You really do have an impressive résumé; that’s in large part why we didn’t hire you. You had too much experience. We wanted someone who would bring a new perspective.
Candidate: So I was over-qualified?
Board: Also, we didn’t like your former boss.
Candidate: That I knew. He never gets credit for anything. How many of the board members voted for me?
Board: More than half.
Candidate: So what about that makes him the winner and me the loser?
Board: We have these checks and balances that allow, in the end, a few to decide for the many.
Candidate: Do you think that’s fair?
Board: It’s not really fair, but it’s what we’ve got to work with.
Candidate: Is the new principal going to be hiring a vice principal?
Board: He already has, and he’s a doozy! He’s a part-time preacher and also interpreter for the new principal.
Candidate: Why does the new principal need an interpreter?
Board: His views are so profound, they defy explanation. At the end of a string of sentences, we don’t really know what he’s said! He has to be smart!
Candidate: If he’s so smart, why did so many parents and teachers ask you not to hire him? I hear he’s made a mess of things at other places.
Board: We hired him because he gets us. He speaks our language.
Candidate: You mean English?
Board: No. Code. It’s the opposite of politically correct speech. For instance, “thug,” — that’s code for blacks. And “takers,” that’s code for blacks, too. There’s also “Muslim extremist,” which is code for anyone who practices Islam anywhere. We’re sure we’ve got a few who’ve sneaked in. We’re also tired of racial quotas. Whites were here first. They should have first choice of where to sit in the lunchroom.
Candidate: I beg your pardon. American Indians were here first.
Board: There you go, being politically correct. We’re so tired of that worn-out refrain.
Candidate: Yes, never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
Board: Are you being funny? We never noticed that before!
Candidate: But your new principal isn’t one of you, and he’s doesn’t understand the School Policy Handbook.
Board: You’re so wonky. We are now gearing our school program toward the trades. And we will be making praying to Jesus an official school policy. No more “moment of silence.” We will also increase our school population, eventually, because the new principal and vice principal will insist on babies being born regardless of whether their parents want them or not.
Candidate: But what if the parents don’t have enough money to pay for their kids’ school lunch, let alone their entire existence?
Board: Their parents just need to work harder.
Candidate: What if there aren’t well-paying jobs for their parents? What if they’re already working two or three jobs just to make ends meet? Most of the cafeteria jobs are gone.
Board: He’s going to bring the cafeteria jobs back but without the unions.
When the new principal is finished, school children will do what they’re told without question, and they’ll know their place. No more whining about “fairness.” Even though, we do admit, the football team gets more than their fair share of equipment. But they’re boys. They deserve it.
Donna Steele of Greenfield is a member of a variety of community organizations aimed at bettering the city, including Greenfield Main Street and the Greenfield Coalition.