Honesty is the best policy, right? Well, that was one Texas dad’s approach when he pulled his daughter out of school with an excuse that some simply couldn’t believe. Many thought his note, which explained his child’s impending absence, was a joke, but he was serious. Did he do the right thing? You decide.
When Jeff Pavlock, a Texas dad, decided that a simple thing like school shouldn’t get in the way of a time-honored tradition, he likely had no idea just how much attention he would soon receive. So, he drove to the school, walked in, and asked for his child to be pulled from class as he filled out the required form, writing a blatantly honest note about his child’s impending absence that was hard for others to believe.
It was Pavlock’s own honesty that garnered attention, as he boldly admitted the reason he was pulling his daughter out of class, causing a photo of his note to go viral. You see, Pavlock wasn’t just a dad. He was a hunter too, and it was deer season in Texas—and this dad wanted to spend the day hunting with his 12-year-old daughter. So, that’s exactly what he told the school when he wrote his daughter’s excuse.
“It’s deer season,” Pavlock wrote in his note on the school’s sign-out sheet, adding, “Headed to go put the smackdown on a monster buck.” Seemingly proud of his own honesty and happy to be spending time with his daughter, the Texas dad decided to take to Facebook, posting about the incident with a photo of his note, detailing the reason he was pulling his child out of school early that day.
“When you check your 12 yr old daughter out of school early and everybody else writes down Dr appointments but you right down the truth…priorities. Ain’t nobody got time for school!!!!” the Texas dad captioned his Facebook post, and it seems many approved of his straightforward approach with the school, finding humor in his honesty.
While Pavlock was shocked by how quickly his post spread across social media, he said he was just having fun and joked that he knew his day would come. “I’m always in a good mood, and I always want to make people smile,” he told KPRC, adding, “I would always post a bunch of funny stuff on Facebook. I kept telling everybody: ‘One day, I’m going to make it big.” And go big, he did.
“I’ve got people from Canada and people messaging me from all over the United States, so I am just living in the moment and enjoying it,” Pavlock said, happy to see his post receiving so much attention. “I just enjoy making people laugh. My wife is laughing. My whole family is laughing. We think it’s hilarious. I never thought in my life it would blow up on Facebook.”
The proud father also used his 15 minutes of fame to shine a spotlight on his daughter, who takes the sport of deer hunting very seriously. “She’s a hunting little bugger,” he said. “She’s made about nine hunts with me so far. We are just waiting on the big one to come out of the woods.”
For the most part, Jeff Pavlock received applause—and not just for his sense of humor. His note was really so much more than just a dad, making a dad joke. This was a father who was spending time with his child, teaching her valuable skills. While we do not wish to diminish the importance of school, some things simply can’t be taught in a classroom. Jeff Pavlock realizes this and takes his role seriously.
Yes, the child missed school, but if it didn’t negatively impact her overall performance, what’s the problem? She missed a classroom lesson or two, but she received life lessons and memories that will last a lifetime. School isn’t jail. If a child takes a personal day with their parent, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, in this case, it was a good thing because, all too often, we hear sad stories of fathers who can’t be bothered to bond with their children, leaving their kids behind rather than sharing their passions and pastimes with them.
If a child has to miss a few hours or even a day of school because a man wants to be a dad and build a happy, healthy relationship with his child, we should applaud him for it. Let this be a reminder to other men that while hunting and other hobbies can be great “alone time,” it is also a great way to spend time with your kids. “That’s the way we do it here in Texas,” Jeff Pavlock said, and if you ask me, he demonstrated the way a lot more dads everywhere need to parent—as an active father figure and role model for their children.