Cedar Brook Elementary School to Jimmy McGee’s Mother, June 1999

You see, “gimme all yer money scumbagg” isn’t quite correct, Jimmy.

Dear Mrs. McGee,

We would like to cordially invite your son Jimmy into our summer school program. For most students with Jimmy’s grades and behavior record, summer school would be mandatory. However, we don’t want to upset Jimmy by making him do something he doesn’t want to do. Especially if he brings that big knife in again! (Seriously, though, please try to ensure that all weapons are kept safely at home.)

It’s not that Jimmy wouldn’t benefit from summer school. He needs it for sure. However, our teachers feel that their safety should be considered as well. After Jimmy said all those hurtful things about Mrs. Brandt’s dead husband, she made us swear he’d never be placed in her class. He threatened Mrs. Kirkpatrick with a sandwich from the cafeteria, which caused her to take out a restraining order. That leaves only the new girl, Ms. Purvis. If Jimmy does decide to join us this summer, please make sure he understands that Ms. Purvis is not to be threatened, assaulted, or viciously teased like some common fat kid. These are teachers and must be respected.

Of course, when Jimmy does destroy her, either mentally or physically, we’ll have to go to plan B. We’ve designed a special closet that Jimmy can be placed in, which locks from the outside and was rated by the town police force as “horrifying.” On the other hand, maybe you can keep the little bastard and try to teach him something yourself. We recommend starting with dividing fractions and working up from there. We also recommend heavy sedatives and/or corporal punishment.

Best,

Harriet Gulaghy, Principal

Analysis:

While this isn’t the oldest or longest letter ever sent home from school, it does have the Cedar Brook Elementary School letterhead on the top, which means it was more expensive than most of the letters sent out by Principal Gulaghy. Gulaghy was known for her reluctant use of school letterhead, claiming it should only be used for interschool memos and letters she wrote to people she went to high school with so they’d know she was doing just fine.

The origins of summer school are unknown, but many believe it was invented by the ancient Chinese, who also invented fingernail clippers and having to go to bed early. Many respected artists, philosophers, and writers attended summer school. Leonardo DaVinci himself took a summer macroeconomics course in 1570.

Surprisingly, Jimmy was not scarred horribly by his experience being locked in a closet all summer. That’s mostly because his mother called up the school and left a message so demoralizing, degrading, and downright depressing that Jimmy was let off the hook.

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