Question 1 : Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow.
(i) Who is ‘he’ in the above passage? Where is the incident taking place? Who is the ‘other boy’ mentioned in the extract?
Answer : ‘He’ in the given extract refers to Patrick Fernman. The incident is taking place in the Juvenile Court. The ‘other boy’ mentioned in the extract is Bobby Ellis, a boy of thirteen who has the reputation of being a bully. Both Fernman and Bobby are from the Greenslade School.
(ii) What are the charges that have been brought against the accused?
Answer : A policeman read the preliminary statement, intoning each word as if it was written in a foreign language. Then he itemized the various charges made against Patrick Fernman.
- Being in possession of an offensive weapon, to wit an eight-inch knife.
- Wound with intent to commit bodily harm.
- Malicious wounding.
(iii) What does the Chairman of Magistrates say to the accused? What is the condition of the accused?
Answer : The Chairman of Magistrates considered the seriousness of Patrick’s offence. He told him he was lucky as Billy had escaped with a wound. If the knife had been pushed a little further, Bobby might have not survived it and then Patrick would have been charged with murder.
(iv) Narrate the story told by the father of the accused to the teachers about the children?
Answer : Mr Fernman narrated the reality behind the incident. The knife belonged to Patrick’s grandmother and she had asked him to get it sharpened. Bobby tried to snatch it away from Patrick. Bobby was a rugged bully and must have been overpowering. Patrick lost control and he used the knife in his self-defense.
Bobby was gravely injured in the scuffle. Patrick had cut himself also. The sight of blood and Bobby’s screams , scared him and he ran away.
(v) What judgement is passed by the Chairman of Magistrates regarding the accused?
Answer : The Chairman of Magistrates was filled with contempt for Patrick’s school. However, he took a kind view of the situation and realised that Patrick had not committed the crime for the sake of it. He was only trying to save himself . He told Fernman that he was sure that his own evident grief and the sorrow which he had brought to his parents was punishment enough; but , for his own good, a supervision order would be made which would require that he report to a probation office once weekly for a period of one year.
Question 2 : Read the extract given below and answer the questions that follow.
(i) Who is the speaker of these lines? Where is the current scene set?
Answer : The speaker of these lines is Mr Florian, the Headmaster of Greenslide School, who is presently very grave and troubled. The current scene is set in Mr Florian’s office.
(ii) Who are ‘both boys’ in the extract? What is the matter of serious concern?
Answer : The two boys referred in the extract are Patrick Fernman, a student of Braithwaite’s class, and Bobby Ellis, a rugged brute of Miss Phillip’s class. Patrick Fernman had been arrested by the police the night before on a charge of wounding Bobby Ellis with a flick-knife during a scuffle.
(iii) What does Braithwaite offer to do after hearing the matter? What more information did he get about the incident?
Answer : The matter was very much serious. Braithwaite offered to give Patrick Fernman’s parents a visit. Mr Florian agreed to it. There he learnt the reality about the incident. Patrick had been asked to get sharpened a knife of his grandmother. It was a prized possession. Billy had tried to snatch it away from Patrick and in the scuffle, was serious injured.
(iv) Was the speaker right when he said that Greenslade did not have a good image?
Answer : Mr Florian was right when he said that Greenslade School did not have a very good reputation among the people at the Juvenile Court. The chairman of magistrates highly criticised the philosophy on which the school operated. He felt that certain cranks and dreamers were doing more harm than the good youth of the area by pursuing an educational course which over the years of trial had achieved nothing to recommend it; rather it had encouraged among the young a vicious license to do evil, and a continued disregard for established social institutions. He felt that such schools were breeding ground for young criminals.
(v) Though the matter was very serious, it all ended on a good note. Elaborate.
Answer : The Chairman of magistrates came down very heavily on the Greenslade School’s authorities. He made a mockery of their philosophy without even referring to the school directly. However, he was very sympathetic towards Patrick.
He realised that Patrick was not carrying a knife as a weapon and he had been asked to get it sharpened. Moreover, Billy , was a brute and had been to the court before. It was clear that he had tried to snatch away the knife and Patrick used the knife in self-defense. He did not hurt him intentionally.
The Chairman said that Patrick had already undergone a great deal of trouble and the grief and sorrow that he had brought his family was enough punishment for him. But a supervision order was made which would require that Patrick should report to a probation office once weekly for a period of one year.
Question 1 : What unfortunate incident happened with Patrick? Was he actually the culprit behind it? How did the Chairman of magistrates turned out to be a man of wisdom and reason?
Answer : One morning in October, Braithwaite was called into the Headmaster’s office. Mr Florian was grave and troubled. Braithwaite was informed that Patrick had been arrested for he had wounded another boy using a knife. The other boy, Bobby Ellis, was also a student of the Greenslade School.
Patrick was to be produced in the Juvenile Court the next Monday. Florian further informed him that the people at the court did not have a high opinion about the students of the school. Braithwaite asked him if he should visit his parents. Florian wrote him a personal note and asked him to do so.
Braithwaite had confidence that his student must have been provoked by Bobby Ellis, who was a rugged bully. Gillian offered to tag along with him and they visited the gravely concerned household of Patrick. There they learned the reality behind the incident. The knife belonged to Patrick’s grandmother and she had asked him to get it sharpened.
Bobby tried to snatch it away from Patrick and he was injured in the scuffle. Patrick had not intentionally used the knife but had only resorted to it in his self-defence. Patrick had cut himself also. After some comforting words from both Braithwaite and Gillian, they left the family.
Braithwaite visited the court but did not go near the Fernmans. The hearing of Patrick’s case started. The Chairman realised that the knife was not a weapon that Patrick used to carry with him and he was asked to get it sharpened. Moreover, it was his first offence but not of the boy who got hurt in the incident.
He also condemned the school in which the boys studied without actually taking its name. However, he let Patrick go as he could see that he was very disturbed by the incident and the grief and the sorrow which he had brought to his parents was enough punishment. Nevertheless, a supervision order would be made which would require that Patrick report to a probation office once weekly for a period of one year.