Arrow-right Camera


The Slice: Principal’s office often serves up surprises

About 80 years ago, when she was in kindergarten in Iowa, Kathleen Urice got sent to the principal’s office.

She had no idea what she might have done. But she had heard rumors about a mechanized paddling machine. So she was worried. “Dreadfully terrified” is how she put it.

But when she got to the office she discovered that she had been sent there by her impressed teacher to recite a poem she had memorized.

“I really learned early what relief was,” said Urice.

Richard Simpson got sent to the principal’s office twice while in high school in California. “Which doesn’t sound like much until you consider that my father was the principal.”

Ray Dickelman got sent to the principal’s office once after missing a couple of classes. His brother-in-law was the principal.

Dickelman got detention for a week.

Tim Finneran said he cannot recall how many times he got sent to the principal’s office. “But I had a coat hook with my name on it in there.”

Don Hartvigsen got sent up the river three times. “Once for each building: elementary, junior high, high school. I found the same grumpy character type in each, often wielding a paddle. I found nothing there I wanted to see again.”

He would grow up to be a grade school teacher.

Bill Reuter, who would one day be a principal himself, had to toe the line while attending Finch Elementary. His mom was a teacher there. “My mother would have found out from Mr. Henry, the principal, if I misbehaved.”

That would not have been in Bill’s best interest.

Back in 1967, Sally Anderson decided to not show up at her own school and instead went to a Bellingham high school where there was going to be an assembly that had attracted her attention. She was nabbed by the vice principal at this other school. “He knew I was in the wrong school because he played golf with my father.”

Joan Tracy was summoned to the principal’s office at Stadium High School in Tacoma in June of 1946. She was baffled.

When she got there she was presented with a scholarship to the University of Washington — $99, enough to cover her first year’s tuition.

Today’s Slice question: How nervous were you at your first school dance?

Write The Slice at P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210; call (509) 459-5470; email Most yo-yo injuries were self-inflicted.

Tags: The Slice