I work at a private school for kids with autism. It's supposed to be state of the art, but I've been less than impressed since I started there last June. PROS: I'm becoming knowledgeable in the field of ABA. I get tuition paid for my masters. I love working with kids with autism. I'm working at my ideal age level (early elementary). This place has a great reputation in the autism world. They love me, and are impressed with what I can to with the kids. CONS: The kids have baby toys that they play with. Not just in my class, but in the whole school you'll find kids playing with inappropriate toys. I've dumped them from my room, but am less than impressed that they do not make this more of a priority in the other classes. The parents are crazy. They have unrealistic expectations for their kids. I'm constantly challenging my students and giving them opportunities for independence, etc. But the parents are so involved it's crazy. I guess I used to wish my parents would be more involved... But now I almost want my non-involved parents back!! I know you'd find this many places, but I have extenuating circumstances (a parent who curses at me etc) that make it a little over the top. There is no art or music. This kills me. I don't know how it's even legal (local districts pay tuition) for them to not have these opportunities. The work load and paperwork is off the charts. I know that it just is that way in special ed.. But if you think it's bad in public school .. It's nearly 4 x what I did in PS in TX.... ridiculous. Their system for IEP is nuts and full of quirks. I've finally figured out how to do it (and I'm verry good with technology).. But it's so much extra work that could be done so much better. They won't try anything they don't know (I.e. Behavioral management strategies, instructional methods, a new curriculum, materials, technology, etc). The building is so run down. For the amount these districts pay, you'd think they could slap on a coat of paint. I don't think I like ABA. It's either that or this school is totally not doing it right. Or a mix of both. But there are things that I just don't ethically agree with (I.e. "reversals" where you take away what's been successful just so you can make a graph to prove that it's successful??") It's year round (a teacher nightmare.) Many more. Too many to list. Anyway, I've been actively seeking a new job. My dad says it's bold to leave a job before having a new one set up. Obviously I would finish my contract. (end of summer). So here's the trick: I got a memo in my box yesterday saying we had to tell them by next Fri whether we are going back or not next year. I definitely won't have a job by Friday. I don't want to agree to stay and then get a call from a school I've applied to ......?? I guess I could make it work, but I'm so unhappy there. Is it worth it? For what it's worth, I provide insurance for my husband and myself. Any suggestions??