A couple of weeks ago, my wife called to announce that she'd gotten two new students in her second grade class.
"Oh," I replied laconically.
"Last week their father killed their mother," she added.
"Oh," I replied in horror.
Counseling has yet to start and may never be available for the poor aunt who has bravely taken responsibility for them, adding four new children to her two. (Her new students have two siblings.)
Today I was visiting her class when one of her former students showed up. He is now a 12th grader and told me that he wants to become a police officer. He was there to pick up his nephew who is now in Sandi's class. He looked terribly stressed. His nephew, only 7, was crying as they left. His mom and the 2nd grader's grandma had been deported. Today, this 17 year old is responsible for the 7 year old.
Because of budget cuts, the kindergarten students at her school began their experience of school in a packed room of 39 crying 5 year olds presided over by one wildly outnumbered and incredibly stressed teacher (teacher's aides have been cut years ago).
But I'm sure that government spending is totally out of control and it will do the economy loads of good to cut it, even if we have to blow up financial markets for a second time in the space of 5 years to prune out all this waste and corruption.