Monday, January 4, 2010

Consideration Still in the Works

I had a lovely lunch yesterday with a great teacher friend who has supportively ridden in my roller coaster car.  We discussed all angles of the new quandary.  My replacement has taken a new position within the district and leaves at semester.  The position was posted, and let me tell you, seeing that posting was really emotional for me.

For two reasons.

 First, it was posted as a one semester only.  Which means they really are holding that job for me for the fall.  They are operating on the belief that I will be surely be back in the fall.  That is the intent.  Sort of.  But as time goes on, I am less and less attached to that job.  Time lessens the grief, the loss.  Time allows for the psyche to adjust. Then posting closed on December 23 at 4:00.  No takers.  Surprise, surprise, surprise.

Second, my students will go through yet another teacher.  So by the end of the year they will have had 2 EBD teachers this year, three EBD teachers in the last 2 years.  That would not be so bad, as kids are very resilient, but the teaching styles are so extreme opposite that will impede any gains on the EBD playing field.  They have gone from psycho-educational approach with heart and celebration to extreme structure, behavior modification, token economies and point systems with no celebration to who knows what is next?  
Those of us in the field know that those sorts of changes at that rate will further exacerbate negative behaviors.  

Which brings me to GUILT.  Yes, I feel horrible guilt about all of this.  I am disappointed in myself for not being able to stay in the game and for thinking I could become and administrator and change the world.  Stupid, stupid girl.  So, because of my thinking errors, students are facing some difficult adjustments.  This makes me no better than all the administrators I have no respect for.

Back to lunch date with great friend.... I casually said that I was considering going back.  She just looked at me a second and said, "That never occurred to me.  Why would you do that?" 
 Interesting, don't you think?

I bumped into another teacher at the grocery store who is friends with Replacement Teacher (RT).  I mentioned I heard RT was leaving at semester.  This teacher's response was one of complete support for RT.  RT wants to be a guidance counselor.  She has waited a long time for this.  I do actually agree that she should have jumped on this opportunity.  Then the teacher said she felt the kids were in a really good place and would be fine.

Now this perception was interesting. I had four very interesting chats with teacher friends over break.  Every one of them mentioned the frustration they were feeling with the lack of effectiveness of RT.  They asked me for specific advice regarding specific student and behaviors.  They are feeling very unsupported.  Interestingly enough, I found out the grocery store teacher has no EBD students in her room this year... so how would she even know?

Lesson learned... actually lesson learning.  I have yet to fully internalize it.  Anyway, lesson here is that we all have unique perceptions.  We put our own spins on those perceptions.  If I ever do become a leader, I must remember that.  And really, who am I to call somebody out for their perceptions?


 I didn't really mean that last line.  In my areas of expertise (which, honestly, is practically in everything) I am queen and my perceptions and spins rule.

So, longer story shorter, when I really ponder the option of going back to my job in two weeks, I feel sick.  I feel overwhelmed.  My gut is screaming, "NO!"

I need to be available for my kids, my parents as my father goes through a winter of chemo, my grandson who is way too far away.
And I need to be there for me.  I need to take time to make a solid plan based on walking my talk in education. 
This is very uncomfortable for me.

So, I wait to hear form Harvard regarding their new doctoral program...wouldn't that be fun to say, "Yeah, I am in a Harvard doctoral education leadership program"?

So, for today I need to find a therapist for myself as well as one for Movie Man.  I need to exercise (nothing too strenuous, people) and sneak in a yummy nap.

Tomorrow I will address an education issue I have been pondering for a bit.

1 comment:

  1. It is interesting the opportunities that are given to us. Imho you want 2 things that are at opposite ends of the spectrum at this point in your life. The students you taught deserve a teacher with your skills. You could go back to the classroom. You have a desire for sanity, respect and a life beyond school. Sadly, you cannot have it both ways which is very uncomfortable. Balance and coming to terms with your future is something you will have to do. Whichever way you decide to go, remember that you can always change your mind. Our decisions are not set in stone. If getting into the Harvard program is something you desire then I hope that you do! Good luck!


Although I am dangerously opinionated, I am a flexible thinker and welcome your thoughts.