Is This Gonna Be Forever?

Ugh...I think I need to find a new job. I know...I'm definitely starting to feel (and sound) like a broken record. It's almost funny, but not at all. The sad part is with the exception of the "financial difficulties" plaguing my current place of employment, I really enjoyed my position this last school year. I liked the ages I worked with and the classes I taught. I liked the small setting and modified school week that enabled me to get to know my students outside the classroom setting. Most of all, I liked the students.

I went into teaching to be able to work in communities on the lower end of the Socio-Economic spectrum. I didn't want to work with students who I felt were automatically given every opportunity. Even though my students struggled, I can't think of anything more gratifying than to have been a part of helping the percentage that tried...and who ultimately were successful. However, all the positives I mentioned are sullied because I just don't feel secure in remaining in a position (with my husband in the same situation), that may not actually exist after a few months into the school year.

When I was completing my student teaching, I envisioned finding a school I'd be at for years...a place I'd grow old with...a place where I'd teach younger and younger siblings, and eventually kids of parents I'd once taught. I imagined previous students coming back to visit and each year having a routine of additional duties I'd perform like swim coach, writing club adviser, etc...whatever was needed. I imagined the ability to build the expectations of the curriculum's lessons and units each year and I imagined doing it with a cohesive group of co-workers all striving for the same. I definitely had some of that in Washington, but after five years I moved to Arizona and that's partially why I think it has been hard for me to find a good fit. Sometimes I think I screwed myself in terms of teaching by moving, but then I have to remind myself that I really like my quality of life down here.

What will I do? I'm not completely sure. Situations like these are tough as are the decisions that I have to make. I have definitely entertained visions of my existence outside of education...jobs in which I don't have to depend on people who have never before worked in education and have no actual background teaching treating our schools as businesses and our students as products. It can be so completely disheartening.

I have a couple ideas I'm playing with..some that involve going back to school and some that would mean my working for myself...ideas that are going to demand change no matter what I choose. I think the scariest part is knowing nothing is guaranteed. I wish there was a way to temporarily visit my future self and have a little chat about what she thinks I should do. I feel confident that she'd have all the answers.

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