[Image description: Composite photo of a kindergarten class--mine--captioned "Jefferson School 11 1971-1972 Kindergarten"]Hey Alex, what happened to you should never, ever happen to any kid, anywhere--you had a right to a kindergarten experience that left you excited about school, not one that left you feeling rejected by peers and your teacher. I know--because I had a pretty awful kindergarten teacher too. It was a long, long time ago, and I'm pretty sure she's gone now; she was on the verge of retirement when I had her. She tried to switch me from lefthanded to righthanded, moving the marker from hand to hand whenever she caught me doing my thing. (It didn't work.) When she saw me reading, she snatched the book and told me my parents had "ruined" my life by letting me learn to read so young, without expert instruction. I went home and stood on my head and tried to forget how to read, figuring she must be right. (That didn't work either.)
But what I remember most was that she humiliated a little boy, made him stand in the middle of the room and take her berating in front of all of us, for the crime of.... leaving the toilet seat up. Did any of us object? We wouldn't have dared. Did any of us reach out to him afterwards? I don't remember. Do any of those sweet little boys in that photo above look like they deserved that? They didn't. They couldn't. A lot of us, including that little boy and me, we graduated high school together--and I'm sure none of us forgot that moment.
Alex, your classmates, the ones who were led to vote against you, will be haunted by this moment. They were asked to be cruel to you, by an adult they trusted. Two of them voted in support of you, by all accounts, and they're obviously great kids, but the others aren't bad kids, just five years old. The adult in this case should be removed from the classroom and disciplined and, if possible, trained out of whatever ideas got her to this place; but the kids are just kids who were put in a terrible situation.
And Alex, you're just a kid too--and you absolutely didn't deserve this. But hang in there-- with any luck, you will also meet amazing teachers and peers, and learn, and flourish. A whole lot of us are watching now, and we expect the best for you.