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'T' SQUARE DICIPLINE

Story ID:9426
Written by:Frederick William Wickert (bio, link, contact, other stories)
Story type:Musings, Essays and Such
Location:Gilboa New York USA
Year:1950
Person:Stanley Banker
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‘T’ SQUARE DICIPLINE
By Fred Wickert


When I was a boy in high school, our school was small enough that all grades were housed in the same building. Elementary school, the gym and the offices were on the first floor. Junior high and high school grades were on the second floor.

There was an 8th grade teacher who was unmarried and all the girls had a crush on him. His name was Stanley Banker. He taught the 8th grade in all subjects and part of the time taught some high school math.

It was well known throughout the school that if you were in Mr. Bankers class room, misbehavior was a bad idea. Mr. Banker always had a “T” square standing up in the chalk tray, leaning against the black board on the left hand side. One supposed this was for the purpose of drawing geometric figures on the black board for mathematical instruction.

Mr. Banker had another use for that “T” square. When a student misbehaved, the student was called up to the front of the class. The offender wasmade to stand in front of the class, bend over and touch his toes and remain in that position until told otherwise.

Mr. Banker then picked up the “T” square. He held it like a baseball bat with the “T” end of it away from him. He approached the rear of the student bending over and touching his toes and applied the “T” portion to the rear end of the student with a hearty swing. The student was then allowed to return to his seat. Needless to say, he sat down somewhat gingerly.

It was rumored that one school year required on the average, three “T” squares for Mr. Bankers class. It is unknown whether he furnished them himself, or requisitioned them from the school supplies. There were a few students who required the application of that device more than once, but for most, once was enough. I don’t know which was worse, the sting of the square or the humiliation one experienced as his classmates laughed at his predicament.

I was never aware of this type discipline being awarded to a girl student, but being an equal opportunity type of man I suppose it was always a possibility. After all, miniskirts had not yet been invented. Mr. Banker was a very effective teacher and was well liked and respected by the students.

I am reminded that with some misbehaving high school boys, for punishment of their misdeeds the Principal ordered them to go back to the 8th grade for a week or two. That seems to have worked quite well in straightening a boy out.

It was very effective and no one ever got really hurt. The only lasting effect was improved behavior. Now days of course, such a thing is unheard of. Look at the chaos in the schools. I for one think a little of the old days might work wonders in todays out of control schools.


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