After one of her 17-year-old students sheepishly came late, high school health teacher Donna Felder announced to her health class that coming late is perfectly normal.
“Everyone’s body changes and develops at its own rate,” Ms. Felder explained to a group of 20 seniors sitting in a semicircle. “That being said, as far as my attendance policy goes, I will not write you up for a tardy as long as you sit down quietly and join the rest of the class.”
“When I listened to what she said to us, I felt a lot better about coming so late,” said Jordan Little, the infamous latecomer. “She reminded me that it just takes time and it’s normal. They put these rooms so far apart. It’s nothing to get frustrated about.”
While Jordan was the most recent beneficiary of Felder’s thoughtful advice, he is not the only student to receive a message of reassurance from the tenured health teacher.
“Jordan is not the first student of mine to come late, and he certainly will not be the last,” said Ms. Felder. “This holding true, I do not see a need to start disciplining or ostracizing kids who arrive after the others. There’s already so much pressure on them. I don’t need to make things worse.”
The school’s principal, Dr. Banks, had only words of praise for his health teacher’s calculated response to the situation.
“No one wants to be late to the party,” said Banks, “but at one time or another, it happens to every man. Coming late is perfectly natural and should not be a source of embarrassment.”
Reports indicate that Ms. Felder stayed after school to meet with a distressed female student who missed her entire period.