I’ve seen many cats in different facilities, such as those working as therapy cats, but it’s very unusual to see cats in school. However, that’s not the case in this school.
Meet Tombi, the ginger cat who used to roam the grounds of one elementary school, greeting students and asking for pets.
One day, Tombi surprised everyone. Somehow, he entered the school and made his way to a third-grade classroom.
Everyone thought that this was a coincidence and that he wouldn’t be there the next day. But, this funny cat had other plans…
Tombi apparently wanted this to be a long-term thing, which is why he settled in and turned the classroom into his home. The students were delighted.
One thing that worried most people was that Tombi would distract the children from their tasks, but he actually had the opposite effect on them. The teacher, Özlem Pınar Ivaşcu said:
“The children come on time to school, and they are taking care of Tombi. This is good for them.”
I couldn’t agree more with her, because I believe this way children have a sense of responsibility, and they develop empathy towards animals.
According to the research on the Compatibility Of Cats With Children In The Family, cats can contribute to children’s emotional and physical development. Living with pets is associated with higher levels of empathy, which is very important.
This coincidence didn’t turn out great for students only, but also for Tombi. He turned this classroom into his home, which means he always had a safe place to sleep.
What’s even better is that his food and water bowls were always full and only his. Students quickly became his friends, taking excellent care of him.
After realizing that the classroom became Tombi’s home, Ivaşcu took him to the vet to get him vaccinated and to ensure that he was healthy and safe around children.
Unfortunately, this fairy tale didn’t last very long… One of the student’s parents filed a complaint against Tombi, as he could pose a health risk.
Ivaşcu bonded with Tombi so much that she just couldn’t leave him on the streets again, so she took him in.
After leaving school, Tombi was very sad. He missed his friends so much that he didn’t eat for three days.
The students wanted to cheer Tombi up, so they sent him drawings and letters to let him know they still think about him. Unfortunately, nothing helped… Tombi just wanted to be in the classroom with students again.
The teacher started to seriously worry about Tombi… She shared his story on social media, receiving a lot of support, including from her manager and the director of education in Izmir.
The biggest twist came when the parent, who complained about the cat, changed her mind. She was so sorry after seeing Tombi in such a bad condition, and after seeing how much kids love him. She wanted him back in class, too.
“And he is happy again to be with the kids. The children were very happy to have Tombi back.”
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