Friday, November 14, 2008

Inglés, Por Favor.

I got a great phone call that I need to share.

Someone from my daughter's school called me yesterday.

Once he had established who he was, of course I can't remember his name now, and that he was from the school, he said that he needed to ask me a few questions.

"Does Lilly speak Spanish in your home."

"No." I wasn't sure what kind of test this was and if I should tell him that she still watched Dora, and has occasionally called her grandmother her abuela. So, I just opted for the no on that one.

"Was Spanish her first language?"

"No." I knew that one for sure.

"Well, we have in our records that she speaks primarily Spanish at home and so I have printed her report card for the parent teacher conference next week in Spanish."

"......." There was silence. I had no idea what I was supposed to say to that. I hadn't seen that one coming at all.

Finally, he started to speak again.
"I'll just reprint it in English."

"Yeah. That would be a good idea."

And we got off the phone.

Now, I don't know about you, but I found this both hilarious and very disturbing.

First, In conversation that I left out, he had actually indicated that we marked that she spoke Spanish when we enrolled her. I'm not about to say we absolutely didn't, because we can make mistakes, but I think I would be pretty clear on the fact that my daughter isn't an ESL learner.

Second, I'm not really sure what the long silence was for. Was he actually waiting for me to tell him that it would be fine to just leave it in Spanish? Were we supposed to say we could just muddle though? Was the school going to leave the report card and provide the teacher and I a translator just to go over the report card? Or, was I suddenly supposed to fess up and admit that I really did speak Spanish. No matter, it didn't happen.

This school has issues, and while most of them I find upsetting, at least finally they gave me one that made me laugh.

My husband says that from now on, every time the school calls, I should answer the phone in Spanish, which I could do. I might just try it one day. If I do, I will let you know.