Substitute teacher spoils Christmas for First Graders

Imagine announcing to a class of tiny kids that Santa isn't real.

A heartless substitute teacher has shattered the Christmas dreams of a whole heap of six-year-olds.

The fill-in teacher at Cedar Hill School in Montville, U.S. revealed to her Year 1 class that Santa isn't real, according to .

The school sent home an apology letter to parents.

“During the course of the day, a substitute teacher apparently announced to the class that Santa was not real,” the school's principal Michael J. Raj wrote in the letter obtained by the

The principal explained he had spoken to the unnamed teacher "regarding her poor judgement in making this proclamation."

"As a father of four myself, I am truly aware of the sensitive nature of this announcement," he said.

Christmas innocence

Christmas innocence destroyed. Source: iStock.

If the conversation comes up

He said he was informing parents of the incident so that they could prepare an argument to keep their kids' innocence in tact... "so that you are aware of the situation and if the conversation comes up at home over the next few days you can take appropriate steps to maintain the childhood innocence of the holiday season,'' he said.

Put on your own oxygen mask first. In other words, take care of yourself or you can't be a fully engaged parent. Parents who deprive themselves of rest, food, and fun for the sake of their kids do no one a favor. "People feel guilty when they work a lot, so they want to give all their free time to their kids," says Fred Stocker, a child psychiatrist at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, in Kentucky. "But you risk getting squeezed dry and emotionally exhausted." A spa weekend may not be realistic, but it's OK to take 15 minutes for a bath after you walk in the door. (A tall request for a kid, yes, but a happier Uno player goes a long way.) Running ragged between activities? Ask your child to prioritize, says Taylor. She may be dying for you to chaperone a field trip but ambivalent about your missing a swim meet—the ideal amount of time for a pedicure.

Of course, all children eventually find out the truth, and some parents choose to tell their own kids. But having an teacher tell them straight up at school is fairly devastating and confusing.

It's hard enough knowing how to handle the questions about how Santa gets into the house, let alone how to navigate an adult telling them it's all made up.

The school’s superintendent, Rene Rovtar, weighed in too, saying she was “troubled and disheartened by this incident.”

“The childhood wonder associated with all holidays and traditions is something I personally hold near and dear in my own heart,” she said.