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Showing posts from June, 2007

Seriously, Can't You Just Be Nice??

The pictures below are of my bruises from the IVs I got in the emergency room. Just to prove I was really sick. Now an administrator at my school says that I need to come take the trash from my room to the dumpster "for the kids." I hate it when they pull this manipulative guilt trip. Why not just say "I understand that you're really sick, but it would really help me if you came to throw away all the trash." Why use the "if you loved the kids, you would do this" card? Administrators around me have a habit of this. A co-worker of mine was out for two weeks because her mother-in-law was dying in the burn unit. The co-worker says that an administrator was really supportive at first, then when said administrator realized she was out for a while, he/she started sending her emails asking her to do model lessons for a new school hiring process. When she said no, he/she apparently retaliated by scheduling her official observation on the day she return

Is it THAT Hard to Be Nice? (Or: Somewhat of a Rant)

I mentioned that I ended the school year very ill. The weekend before the last week of school, I basically threw up until I was completely dehydrated, and had to go to the ER to get fluids and anti-nausea medication. (6 hours, I think?) My roommate and boyfriend came with me, and brought a big bucket for me to throw up in (too much information?) We had 3 doctors and 2 nurses so no one was communicating. We finally let Warren go home at 1:30 am because he had to work - we took a cab home at 3 am. When I stopped throwing up, I started shaking/shivering. The nurse said it was probably just because the IV fluids were cold. Well, I got home, went to sleep, and woke up shaking like I never have before. My teeth were chattering, and I wasn't so much shivering as convulsing or almost seizing. We called the advice nurse twice; she didn't seem worried. I sweated through about 6 changes of sheets and several changes of clothing and never really stopped shaking. I tried to dri

Teacher Turnover

Someone did a study about how much money it costs to deal with the crazy amount of teacher turnover in many districts. It's here: and it's sad. You can also calculate the cost of teacher turnover in your particular school or district here: One might wonder - if it costs SO MUCH to replace the teachers who leave, why wouldn't you just treat the teachers you have better so they wouldn't leave?? Then you could spend the money on something useful, AND you'd keep experienced teachers. Does it really take rocket scientists to figure that out? Maybe, because the administrations in school districts really really don't get it.

Job Security

It strikes me (in the middle of the night) that I am leaving I am leaving an incredibly difficult, often emotionally abusive, poorly supported, under-appreciated and under-respected job with incredible job security (ever tried to get a tenured teacher fired? Short of hurting a child, it's almost impossible. And it may even be difficult then) and good benefits for a job I love where no one is mean to me and I get appreciated but is part-time, has no benefits, and zero job security. Is there a reason that all of the good things couldn't go together??

The Stories Go On

Many people have asked me if I'll keep writing the blog now that I'm no longer working at my school. I didn't know that so many people were reading it. That's encouraging. Anyway, I will keep writing it, in part because I still have so many stories that I haven't shared and I need to get out - about lockdowns and jaded police officers who don't care about kids any more and principals who have turned into politicians and wonderful children who see hope in the middle of the ghetto. And the gecko, of course the gecko. Another reason is because many of my friends think it is really good for me and thatI actually have some important things to say. However, the main reason I need to keep writing this is because the kids need someone to have a voice for them, no matter how small or ineffective that voice is. No one listens, and they deserve so much better than to be ignored.

It's Over.

The school year is over. I celebrated (?) by getting very dramatically ill and not being able to go to school for the last three days of it because I was too busy going to the emergency room over and over. Now there's all sorts of mixed feelings about what I wasn't able to do and how things ended. Many, many, very mixed feelings. But I'll have more time to blog this summer. And - although I'm very much looking forward to a break from teaching - less money. Anyone hiring?

Last Report Cards

The last set of report cards are due today - whether or not I'll actually have them finished today is a whole other story. Besides, after last time, I'm not likely to take my evaluator's comments that seriously anyway. For that to happen, she'd have to 1)let me tell the truth, 2)not just cross out entire sections without telling me why or how to make it better. Unlikely. So, I'll probably get lectured again about how I don't reflect on my teaching, which would make me a better teacher, and probably a better person. That's my problem. I don't reflect on my teaching!

Getting Ready for a Substitute

Some of the kids wrote notes to me about how they were going to behave when there was a sub the following day: "I'm going to try to get along with the sub." "I'm going to be good so when you get back you don't have to waste your brath on us being bad." "I'm nurvse about the sub because I don't know is it going to be good." "I don't want a sub because they mean and not take us to computer" "I am sad because you are not going to be hear but I am happy because you are going to be back. But I am going to be good for the sub." "I am mad because we would have subsututues that weak. I am a little happy because you are here today. So I am a little mad and I am a little happy to see you today." "I am happy because I'm not going to be here next year. And I'm happy because I'm going to have more fun there." [A little off topic, but apparently what was on his mind!] "Im going