Throughout the year I'd got to know Monty, and I enjoyed having him in my class. He was a front-row kid. The first one done with tests. The only one excited about Shakespeare. The best writer in his hour. A kid who cared about grammar. He was also a rules-stickler, and even came up with a "secret code" for when students were texting while I was teaching. I could have my back to the class, hear his cue, and proclaim, "PUT IT AWAY. If I see you texting again it's mine." Blew their minds ;) Obviously he became a bit of a teacher's pet, though I despise the term. I prefer model citizen and exceptional student of literature and writing.
When Monty showed me the letter, I was nearly speechless. I was honored that he and his fellow classmates would stand up for me like that. It was bitter-sweet, though, because I knew what this meant. It meant he was going up against The Beast, and It would hold a grudge and likely start a vendetta against Monty, someone undeserving of such persecution. There were even students who refused to sign the letter, fearful that just having their name on the document would bring them Its wrath.
I asked Monty who told The Beast that I was worthless, as he mentioned in the letter, and he admitted to me that one of those people was his very good friend. I was worried at what this might bring for him, and even more-so when I found out he would be presenting his letter to the board, and would be speaking on behalf of all the students who signed, as well as answering any questions they may have. He was just a kid. Barely fifteen. It was a lot.
You'll read about the board meeting later this week, but I wanted to give you a little more information on my take-a-stand student, Monty, because tomorrow he will reveal his identity and post in a guest-spot, giving you his perspective of the events that shaped that year.
He did not know at the time, most of the things you've learned in this series. I did enlighten him some in the following years, when all was said and done, as to just how bad it was, but this has been the first time that anyone has known many of these tales. After reading several of these posts, he's contacted me, appalled at how deep the iceberg was, only the tip of which he'd seen prior to this.
Monty had suffered at the hand of The Beast, too. I didn't know it at the time, but looking back I see what courage it must have taken for him to stand against It. Already persecuted, he stuck his neck out in my honor, and though the guillotine didn't drop immediately, he soon found himself in The Beast's Death Camp.
Come back tomorrow so you can read first-hand what Monty saw, how he perceived me, The Beast, and the situation, and what he's doing now as a senior.