Old school building

There was an ALT (foreign English teacher) at the high school I used to go to. This happened to him at his previous school.

This school was composed of six buildings, including the old school and the newly built school. There was a passageway on the first and third floors that connected the buildings. The staffroom was on the sixth floor, but several of the teachers used the staffroom in the old school building.

So, during the day both the new and old buildings were used for classes, club activities and homeroom. But when the students returned home for the day, for some reason all the teachers would move from the staffroom in the old building to the one in the new building.

But the ALT was employed by an outside company, so he was the only teacher who didn’t have a desk in the new staffroom (maybe they forgot?). So, because there was nothing else he could do, he would remain alone in the old staffroom when night fell.

One night, when he was sitting in the staffroom by himself, as usual, he was making some printouts for class. The staffroom was the only room with lights on in the old school building, and as the building fell silent, the ALT was focused on his computer. But then, suddenly, he heard a noise from the next room.


He flew out of his chair, shocked. He listened closer, and it sounded like someone was writing on the blackboard in the next room with chalk. A short while later the noise stopped, and thinking it strange, he wondered if one of the students was still there. He went back to his work.

The building fell silent once more, the only thing he heard was the sound of his keyboard echoing as he typed. Then,


He heard the sound of footsteps in the hall. But it sounded like they came from his left, in front of the staffroom door. Normally at this point you would freak out and run away, but he didn’t think it could really be a ghost. ‘Haha, one of the kids is just messing with me,’ he thought. ‘I wonder what they’ll do next?’ Rather than get scared, he waited excitedly for what would happen do next.

Then he heard the sound of the footsteps returning down the hall, slowly, ending at the staffroom door.

Kotsu kotsu.

The sound stopped outside the door separating them. The teacher smiled. For a while it was quiet. He swallowed, waiting for what was to come next. Then, the paper shredder by the door suddenly started.


It fell over in front of the amazed teacher. He began to panic.

‘Shit! I gotta get out of here!’ he thought and ran from the room. But unfortunately for him, the staffroom was on the sixth floor. In order to get to the new school building he had to pass through on the third floor. He wasn’t exactly young, but driven forward by the illusion of footsteps chasing him from behind, he ran as fast as he could, and somehow made it to the passageway on the third floor.

He stopped halfway across and looked back, but there was nobody there. Relief washed through him. He put his hands on his knees, tired, and took a few deep breaths. He looked up in time to see a half-transparent girl run past him into the old school building.

He ran faster than ever up the stairs in the new school building, all the way to the staffroom, and told them about what he’d just seen. The other teachers just looked at him and were like, “Wait, you’ve been using the old school building without even knowing the truth?”

Apparently the old building was famous for ghostly appearances at night, which is why all the teachers made sure to get out before the sun set each day.

“At first I was like, ‘Seriously? Why didn’t anyone tell me?!’ But thanks to that, they put a desk in for me in the new staffroom, so in the end I was actually rather lucky! Hahaha!”

He told us, in English, like it was all one big fun game to him.


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