Saturday, July 08, 2006

The never-ending story

Despite my maybe over-optimistic attempt to give an "ending" to the ScaryLecturer saga a few weeks ago, it continues. Oh, it continues.

When I checked my emails for the first time part way through my week in NZ, I found my inbox was foundering under an onslaught of mails from the Head of Department. These turned out to be increasingly frantic attempts to find out some (any! even fictitious!) marks for certain students from the course I had been tutoring for ScaryLecturer.

It turns out he went off on his scheduled overseas trip without having finished marking the exams. And three of the students were due to graduate at the end of this semester, but obviously couldn't unless their marks were finalised in time.

The best I was able to do was ftp into my university files and find the marks for the in-term assignments that comprised 50% of these students' grades. But those put two of the students on borderline passes so without their exam marks it can't be sure whether they will be eligible to graduate or not.

The HOD called
The Dean, and
The Dean called
Security --

no, wait, that's an A.A. Milne poem.

But he did, and he did, at 11 o'clock at night, with the final deadline for course marks at nine the next morning, and they broke into ScaryLecturer's office to find a pile of partially marked exam papers, MISSING the two belonging to the students due to graduate. I am told that they then all went around to ScaryLecturer's house and lurked there in the dark for a while but couldn't quite bring themselves to break into private property.

So in the end, the two students will graduate, whether they really deserve to or not, and ScaryLecturer will not be a popular guy when he gets back to Australia.

Meanwhile, my inbox is gradually filling with emails from baffled students who want to know why the marks which just came out say "incomplete" for their linguistics course. I've settled on a slightly more diplomatic reply than the one that first occurred to me, which was, "Because your lecturer is an incompetent arsehole."


shrinkykitten said...

We have a prof who just doesn't turn in grades ... he can go a year without doing it.

I'm so sorry you've been hit with the brunt of this. And how hilarious the lengths they went to to get the grades! I really hope the students appreciate that.

Lucy said...

wow. I'm not sure I could come up with a more diplomatic reason...

Inside the Philosophy Factory said...

Wow --- talk about a stupid way to burn your political bridges with administration...

StyleyGeek said...

Mine wasn't MUCH more diplomatic, Lucy.

Sadly, Shrinky, I don't think the students will ever know the lengths that people went to to try and sort this out. They'll probably blame the whole dept for the screw-up.

And ITPF, I agree. Given that this guy doesn't seem to really want to keep teaching much longer, I wonder if maybe that was part of the point.