We learnt that our form teacher, Mr. Yeo, was about to be transferred to another
school in a week. All the pupils adored Mr. Yeo as he was a very good and
dedicated teacher. He never shouted at us and was very patient with the slower
Our class decided to hold a farewell party for this model teacher. But we needed
to have the permission of the school's principal first. Zoe was given the task
of writing to the principal for permission to hold the party as her handwriting
was the neatest and her language skills were excellent. After the letter was
written, all the pupils in the class signed the letter and a delegation of six
pupils, myself included, went to the principal's office.
The principal was mildly curious when he saw the six of us in his office. We
gave him the letter of petition and after reading it in silence, he frowned. He
said that the request was very irregular but after the six of us beseeched him
in earnest, he relented and gave us the permission. He allowed us to hold the
party during the last period of the following Friday, which would be Mr. Yeo's
last day of teaching in our school.
The whole class was excited after getting the permission. We gathered together
after school and planned for the party. After some debate and discussion we
finally agreed on the things we needed to do.
On the last period of school on the following Friday, our class monitor, Abdul
Ghani, approached Mr. Yeo just as he was about to begin the next lesson.
we have obtained permission from the principal to treat you to a simple farewell
Some of the pupils then brought out the drinks and food that have been
prepared by their parents. We have left it hidden in a corner so that Mr. Yeo
would not see it as we wanted to surprise him. And surprise him we did! For an
instant, he was speechless and his eyes took on a misty look. Then, he was back
to his normal self again. He acquiesced to the treat and my classmate, Sujata,
brought a paper plate of fried noodles and a cup of lemonade for Mr. Yeo.
Everyone cheered and clapped as he took his first spoonful of fried noodles.
After the meal, Mr. Yeo gave an impromptu farewell speech. He spoke for fifteen
minutes, thanking the class for taking the trouble to hold the party and for
being such caring pupils. His speech was also peppered with sound advice for us.
Just before the school bell rang to signal the end of the school day, I was
given the honour of presenting our farewell gift to Mr. Yeo. We knew him to be a
great fan of mystery and detective novels and so we had bought for him the
"Complete Sherlock Holmes" which contained all the stories and novelettes
written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. When he unwrapped the gift, we saw two large
beads of tears rolling down his cheeks. He was very deeply moved.
school bell rang and each pupil shook hands with Mr. Yeo for one last time
before heading for home.