A Blue Letter?

The name “Der Blaue Brief” (in English, “the blue letter”) refers to disciplinary letters, children and their parents receive from their schools in the case of academic problems; while these letters are no longer blue, the name remains. deutsche Version

Ein Blauer Brief ...

Getting a “blue letter” is a nightmare for German parents and schoolchildren because it bears bad news. Schools send them out when a student’s grades are so low that he or she is in danger of having to repeat a class. While the school’s warning isn’t blue anymore, but looks like any other piece of mail, the name “blue letter” is quite alive, dating back to the 18th century when Prussian officers would be handed their discharge papers in a blue envelope. In those days, paper was often made—boiled, in fact—out of old clothing, and the Prussian army’s uniforms were blue—thus the term blue letter—sort of like the American term “pink slip.”

A ‘pink slip’ – for whom?

It’s not pupils who refuse to or cannot perform as they are meant to, who deserve a “blue letter”. Rather, it’s a system that seems to be bent on driving out all joy of life by exerting pathogenic pressure, leaving young people without the joy of learning. It’s the operators of such a system who truly deserve a discharge of sorts.

They lack the right to behave as if they were the “better parents”, pretending to know what’s best for every child – and its family. Unperturbed, they keep on letting off steam by playing their paedagogical and ideological and manipulative games with other people’s children, more often than not creating havoc in those children’s minds, hearts and souls. It’s them who love imposing their will onto students, parents and families. By threat of punishment they dictate not only what and how, but no, also where the children have to learn, effectively tearing them away from their families. At the same time they don’t carry any responsibility whatsoever for any damage they might perpetrate by doing all this.

And damage there is – in heaps: every year, every day, every hour in their schools. It’s them who are never brought to justice if something goes wrong when ‘visiting’ their schools – dramatically wrong. What’s more, they want to keep on pulling the strings, by all means trying to prevent that someone breaks ranks. Someone who doesn’t want to have anything to do with their schools. If this isn’t a reason for issueing a ‘pink slip’ – or, for that reason, a ‘blue letter’.

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