0. The Staff Memo
"What in the name of-" Professor Severus Snape murmured, holding in his hands a memorandum sheet signed by the Headmaster Dumbledore.
The parchment read like this:
To the Faculty of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,
In accordance to the nearing end-of-term of this schoolyear, I have decided to implement the evaluation of teachers by the students themselves before the year ends.
This will, hopefully, become a part of the yearly tradition in Hogwarts. and serve as a strong motivation for all of us in fulfilling in our duties, with the dedication and high standards as expected from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
In regards to the carrying out of the actual evaluation, evaluation sheets will be handed to every students to be filled out and returned in the last day of classes. The results will be posted on the very first day of the next school year.
Good luck in dealing with your daily duties, and I sincerely hope that you will receive high ratings from your students.
Postscript: Your payroll will be affected by the results of your evaluation.
"I wonder what has gotten into his head?" Severus muttered, half to himself, his hands crumpling the parchment as he read silently.
With a sigh, he carelessly tossed the memo on his desk afterwards, and got off his chait to pace, muttering along to himself as if the whole world would end and he would be the only one to save it.
As if he would truly care if that were to happen.
It was no secret in Hogwarts that Professor Severus Snape was the least liked by the students; in fact, it was practically urban legend. The Gryffindors, Hufflepuffs, and the Ravenclaws loathed him; only his own house Slytherin regarded him with what can barely called 'liking', as it was part of his second nature to deduct points from all houses except Slytherin.
In all of the four houses, only one barely regarded him with respect.
If any insider from Hogwarts were to analyze the present situation, this would mean Severus Snape will be starved to death in the next school year.
Minutes had passed and Severus already had covered the whole floor when someone came in, holding a copy of the very same memo.
Remus Lupin. Severus continued pacing, not noticing the passing of his co-teacher.
Remus meanwhile walked to his own desk and sat down, laughing softly as his eyes followed the progress of Severus' pacing. Suddenly bored by the prospect of having to stare at the feared Potions Master pacing in anxiety (though it was a very rare occurence), he finally opened his drawer and took out a bar of Honeydukes chocolate, unwrapping it.
"You can try sweetening them up, Severus." he said suddenly, biting a chunk off the chocolate bar.
Just when Remus thought Severus didn't hear him only did he stop suddenly and glared at him, eyes flashing. "What do you know about teaching?" he spat. "Teaching does not equate with babysitting those sodding brats!"
"Severus, what I'm trying to say is-"
"I will NOT stoop down to your level!" Severus interrupted. "I will continue to teach my students my own way, where they at least put something in their stupid heads and not only mere child's play! Not like you, Lupin. The dunderheads may come out of your classroom all jolly and happy like kingdom come but they never learn a thing!"
Remus sighed in exasperation. "They do, Severus. Give them credit, at least." he said, an edge in his voice. He may be the eternally-cheerful professor, but being with Severus Snape alone in a room will strip away one's gaiety.
In fact, in Remus Lupin's mind Professor Severus Snape was an unhooded dementor, with black robes and all.
"Give those idiots credit?" Severus sneered, recovering his sense of arrogance. "Please, Lupin. Give ME credit." He walked back to his desk and picked up the memo, waving it towards Lupin. "This bloody thing is making me think, though. I'm not stupid not to notice that I'm not well-liked by the students," Snape murmurmed, almost humbled by the whole thing.
Remus tried not to smirk, because of his misgivings, but the hilarity of Snape being humble was, well...
"Ohohoh, now you see the whole situation here," he grinned, not being able to stop himself. "what thinks you, dear Severus? We have payroll to think about here."
Knowing Severus Snape, the answer is quite...unpredictable. He only glared daggers at the smirking co-professor. "I do not know, to be quite frank, Lupin."
As a response, Remus only continued grinning at him.
"Damn you," Severus hissed, swiveling his chair so that his back faced Lupin. He knew what he should do now, very well. Only thing is...
"How can I bloody do it?" He moaned to himself, frustrated, as he buried his face in his hands.
Potions class. Professor Snape was droning on about the effects of vervain when mixed with ground moonstone, when he noticed that a faint green smoke was wafting from Neville Longbottom's cauldron. He groaned inwardly.
"What happened NOW, Longbottom?" Snape spat, frustrated at this particular student's continuous failures in his class. He strode towards quivering Neville's table and slapped his hand on an unstained surface on the table, making the poor boy recoil. He noticed the queer violet hue of the overflowing mess. "I didn't tell anybody yet to put in the hawk feathers!"
"I-I-I..." Neville stammered. To his defense, Hermione Granger snapped, "Well you didn't tell us when, Professor Snape. You just said to mix them in the proper order. How could we know what the proper order is, when you haven't told us yet?"
Snape's face went red with restrained anger. Count one to ten, he told himself. Do not shout, Severus. Do not. Taking a deep breath, he stared Hermione down and said in his usual silky voice "Twenty points from Gryffindor for the cheek. And badly thought of, that. When I said in proper order, I meant while I dictate, Miss Granger," he seethed. "I do not trust any of you idiots enough to let you go off mixing potions without my guidance." So saying, he turned his back and returned to the blackboard, returing to his lecture.
The Gryffindor tables became full of students who were scowling at him. The Slytherin tables were just dandy, Snape thought with disdain. Smiling, gullible gits...Snape wondered when he could end putting up with them.
As he went back to the lesson, his two minds were occupied with different thoughts. One half was preoccupied with lecturing, while the other was lamenting the big loss in his next year's payroll.
"Still not likeable, eh. Severus?" Remus panted, catching up with him in the corridors. "Your face-"
"I don't bloody care what you want to say, Remus Lupin," Snape growled. "The whole world may bloody well end, but I'm not going to turn into a goddamn dandy-"
It was now Remus' turn to interrupt. "Either you try to improve or not, Severus, it is all but one to me," he said as they turned a corner. "By the way, I didn't call your attention just for that." He held out a roll of parchment for Severus. "Here. Dumbledore sent another memo, and this is your copy."
Stopping abruptly that Remus collided into him, Snape shrugged off the casualty (who suffered an almost-broken nose) and quickly unrolled the parchment and read.
It went like this:
In order to inform you of the coming evaluation, these are the qualities that the students will be asked to rate you in accordance of your performance in each of the evaluation sheets:
1) The professor teaches lessons relevant to the subject.
2) The professor is punctual, starts and dismisses the class on time.
3) The professor instills the school's values in his/her lessons
4) The professor utilizes varying methods in his teaching (visual aids,
field trips, etc.)
5) The professor shows impartiality and fairness among all his/her students.
6) The professor makes himself available in consultation hours.
7) The professor provides an atmosphere inducive to learning.
Severus looked up to comment to Remus, but he was already gone. One glance at the parchment told him that his payroll was going take a very, very large bleed.
Severus stared stupidly into the parchment for a good, long minute.
"Not if I can help it," Snape muttered.
Of course there will be other chapters! How would our dear Potions Master deal with the 'qualities' that the coming evaluation sheet pose against him? Each will be dealt with a whole chapter each.