Presenting Proper Etiquette for Chaperones

Say hello to the Allatoona High School chaperones.
Say hello to the Allatoona High School chaperones.
This seasoned-chaperone cares for those she is watching.
This seasoned-chaperone cares for those she is watching.

Chaperones are tough, let me tell you.

For years, the loyal, dedicated corps of chaperones on almost every level of social activities have taken a bad rap. "Third wheel," "Party pooper," and "Buzz kill's," are just a few of the nasty titles given to them by party people who do not respect authority.

But the tough-skinned chaperones continue, enduring the cold shouldering, shuns, and resentment that you can read on the faces of the people they are there to protect from harm, bodily-injury, and a police record.

Sometimes, a chaperone will steal a dance to show that chaperones are human.
Sometimes, a chaperone will steal a dance to show that chaperones are human.
These guys are not real chaperones, but a bad called "Bad Chaperones."
These guys are not real chaperones, but a bad called "Bad Chaperones."

Chaperoning is not for sissies.

A chaperone's work is tough, challenging, and totally-needed at any social event that involves young people whose hormones are going nuts for some late-night forbidden passion or maybe some mind-altering substance that all authorities frown upon. If the people who love to lose themselves in a dangerous party atmosphere could just see what would be the result of their unbridled party without the presence of chaperones, they would join a monastery or travel the world as a humble missionary.

Chaperones were once the teachers in a school that were oblivious to the word "popular." These people did not have a social life. Even their wardrobe was not appreciated. I suppose therein is the reason they were always chosen to chaperone the junior and senior proms, all student-related parties that went on after school hours and parties where the main attendees were middle-school students. It doesn't matter to a true chaperone. If called upon, they are always available to serve.

This school bus driver is the ideal chaperone.
This school bus driver is the ideal chaperone.
This is the image of  a modern-day chaperone.
This is the image of a modern-day chaperone.
Chaperone and teens listen to a phonograph.
Chaperone and teens listen to a phonograph. | Source
1890 teens and chaperones at an outdoor gathering.
1890 teens and chaperones at an outdoor gathering. | Source
Annacosta, Maryland  high school prom with  full accompaniment of chaperones.
Annacosta, Maryland high school prom with full accompaniment of chaperones. | Source
1800 chaperones overlook a teen event.
1800 chaperones overlook a teen event.
The "Sleeping Chaperone," vintage photograph.
The "Sleeping Chaperone," vintage photograph.
A scene from "The Drowsy Chaperone," a hit Broadway play.
A scene from "The Drowsy Chaperone," a hit Broadway play.
Another scene from the Broadway play, "The Drowsy Chaperone."
Another scene from the Broadway play, "The Drowsy Chaperone."
Campers on a hike with chaperone along to make sure they have a safe time.
Campers on a hike with chaperone along to make sure they have a safe time.

Valuable advice ahead.

Not that chaperones need it, I just wanted to add some extra-security to the chaperone's place in society by publishing this piece I like to call . . .

Presenting Proper Etiquette for Chaperones

(Note: this advice is not for all chaperones, but for those who are new to this distinguished role).

To chaperones . . .

  1. When you speak, make sure your voice doesn't take on the sound of a police siren.
  2. Make sure that your eyes do not appear to be able to fry someone who make be acting-up just a little.
  3. Do not wear clothing that is saturated with Lysol to send-out the signal that you are totally-clean.
  4. It is not required that you stand with hands on your hips and surveying the crowd of young people having a good time and you are preparing to pounce (like a jungle cat) on anyone who even looks like a rule-breaker.
  5. Keep your presence to a minimum when you interact with the people you are there to watch after. Example: when you cut-in on a young high school guy to dance with his date. Don't just keep on cutting-in continually for this might look like you are stalking her.
  6. One casual drink, if alcohol is served, is permitted. But not getting completely-wasted and telling everyone in a loud voice you are not to be messed with for you are "the law."
  7. If you do have to break-up a girl and guy who are dancing way too close for decent people, please do not act as if you are starring on CBS' Blue Bloods as a member of the "Reagans," the first-family of police work and physically give the guy the heave-ho across the room. Remember, you can be sued.
  8. As a chaperone, you are not required to give a stand-up comedy routine consisting of jokes about chaperones. e.g. "How many chaperones does it take to change a light bulb?" "Six. One to change the light bulb while five look-out for rowdy hoodlums."
  9. No dozing on the job, "Mr. and Mrs. Chaperone." This act would not only put chaperones in a negative light, but cause those you are working for to breed distrust about chaperones.
  10. Absolutely no taking bribes from people at the party where you are working to let them do more than the law will allow while you pretend to not see them.
  11. There will be no video-taping of this party by you, your family or friends, no matter the theme, so you can make extra cash by peddling the DVD to the public.
  12. Male chaperones, you can forget winking at any attractive ladies at the social event where you are keeping order. You do not want to bring a lawsuit on yourself for sexual harassment.
  13. Female chaperones, see above advice for how you are to handle yourself at same said social event where you are working.
  14. When eating, make it very discreet. Do not "wolf down," the food like a raveneous bear who is famished from sleeping all winter. What this means is: No talking with your mouth full of spaghetti, spewing food at people when you laugh and other vulgar non-mannerable actions.
  15. Chaperones, remember you are a working employee of the school or parties who hired you to take care of things, so do not let this position go to your head and cause you to do things like announcing to the people at the party that "You are in command." This is not only foolish, but untrue.

The only controversy now is when you and other chaperones have a reunion in years to come, who will chaperone "your" party?

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Comments 2 comments

DreamerMeg profile image

DreamerMeg 19 months ago from Northern Ireland

I remember going to a party one time between the Guides and the Scouts and we were allowed to play "postman's knock", where a boy and a girl were allowed a few seconds alone together in the dark behind a closed door, before the next victim was chosen. Don't think I would ever allow that game to be played at any party where I was a chaperone! And the male chaperone there was a Minister, who didn't have a clue.


kenneth avery profile image

kenneth avery 18 months ago from Hamilton, Alabama Author

Dreamer Meg,

Thanks for your comment, Dreamer. It shows just how much wisdom you have acquired since "postman's knock." And I am proud of you.

Thanks for the comment and please keep in touch.

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