Interview with Evelyn Morash
QUESTION 3
JACKIE SHEARER:

So what was the story about the struggle with the school nurses?

EVELYN MORASH:

I guess I must have been beginning to be viewed as an agitator. And I must have, oh, I know. I had vend- I had offended one of the school principals because of my request for things to be changed. My youngest child who, this was one of the kids that somehow people didn't know about, he was started, had to have been kindergarten or first grade, but it was the first day of school. I was working. I got home from work about 5:30 and he has a note. Open the note from the school nurse and it says, "Your child shows evidence of head lice and cannot return to school until the head lice are gone." So I got, "Well, what's this?" So I go to the pharmacy, try to get some medication. I, I didn't know that the rules had got changed. You need a prescription to buy Quell or whatever you needed for head lice. So I called a neighbor who had a bunch of kids. She had some around. Doctored the kid up. Get the steel comb, do the whole thing. And I'm not seeing any lice. So after about two hours of soaking the kid's head and well, how's he going to go to school tomorrow, one of the older kids said, "You know, ma. School nurses never check your head the first day of school." All of a sudden it dawned on me, you know, they got back to me. And what, there were a couple of, I don't know why that all happened. Maybe I, maybe I offended them. But I know they, they really got to me and I reacted very, probably just the way they wanted me to react. Scared. Spent a lot of energy. Called the barber who, ah, the kid had gotten the hair cut on the Saturday before school started and I said, "By any chance, did you notice any lice on Eric's hair?" "No. I would have told you right away. Wouldn't have let him g- get out of here without telling you that." So there were little ways they could get back when you were- and I think that's one of the ways that people backed off from taking an active role because when you become an activist in the school and you're not there all the time you leave your most precious object in the hands of people who may be very angry at you, and leave your kids vulnerable. I remember another time one of my kids, ah, was taking a test in school. The early grades. Taking a test. And someone walked up to him and asked him if he was Mrs. Morash's son. Well, who did you think he was? His name. His last, his surname was Morash. The kid got rattled. In very little delicate ways they can do that. And people don't want to leave their kids vulnerable so they back off. And I think it's one of the ways that you know, people stayed away from taking an active role.