Help! - Job Dilemma

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Bizkid, Jun 28, 2020.

  1. Bizkid

    Bizkid New Member

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    Jun 28, 2020

    Hi!

    A little background... I spent the first 6 years of my teaching career teaching business ed at a Catholic school. It wasn't my first choice - I'd been looking for a job for a year and half when I got the offer and just needed to get paid. I had wanted to get into the public school system, in a school that would be a better fit for me - I'm not religious, I disagreed with the school and church's viewpoints on a lot of issues, but a job was a job. I was there for 6 years, and every year applied for every business education opening in my large metropolitan area. In the meantime I honed my skills and experience and qualifications, taking on AP courses and starting a Dual Credit program in Accounting. I learned that business ed jobs and openings are pretty rare, with many school only having 1-3 teachers on staff. Two years ago I finally got an offer from a large public school district, and the job was everything I dreamed - I poured my heart and soul into it, and worked my butt off. In March I was blindsided in a meeting and told my contract was not being renewed. No reason given besides a vague "it's not you, it's me" from the associate principal.

    In my area I've learned that April - May is the hiring window for schools, and I started applying for positions. I got interviews from 8 of the 10 schools I applied to, and I made it to the final round with several of the schools only to not get an offer - typically because the position also included teaching a section of computer programming (not in my skillset), or they went with someone cheaper (I have multiple masters as a career changer). There hasn't been a full time business ed position posted in the area in over a month - and the last one posted was my old position at the Catholic school.

    Here's my dilemma: I left on pretty decent terms, and the school has a history of rehiring people that left even under difficult circumstances. I'm relatively confident if I reached out to my old supervisor I could step back into my old role. But I had so many problems with the school culture (anti-LGBTQ+, families sending their kids to the school because it was mostly white, teachers being walked over by admin, etc.), I'm having a hard time even considering making that call. I know my family would have a difficult time on just my wife's income, I don't want a large gap in my teaching resume, and given all the uncertainty in schools with COVID and re-opening it seems a bit risky to hold out for another public school position this year. Every time I think I about reaching out to the old school, I remember another terrible thing I hated about that job and tell myself I can't go back.

    Any thoughts or advice on this situation would be appreciated.
     
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  3. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    I guess it depends on what that one terrible thing you hated it is... That aside, I'd apply for the job. You don't have to stay past this one year, but, as you said, a job is a job, and a job pays the bills. If you find something else before the school year begins, you can back out. But, in case nothing else pans out, you'll have something to support your family and to prevent a gap on your resume.

    If that one terrible was really that bad, though, then you might just want to find a job outside of education for the time being.
     
  4. Elena3

    Elena3 Rookie

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    Sounds like this is something you should pray about. :wink:
     
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  5. Secondary Teach

    Secondary Teach Companion

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    :)
     
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  6. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    Being religious or not, it is a job. If you decide to go back, you just simply need to be your best self. You shouldn't try to change the views of others through your words rather through your actions. I would personally take the job back but continue to actively look for another until something turns up. However, if you cannot find peace with going to that job, then look for other opportunities. Many parents are looking for teachers to "micro-teach". Maybe see if there is a demand for this in your area.
     
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  7. Bizkid

    Bizkid New Member

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    Jul 19, 2020

    I ended up dragging my feet a few days too long and by the time I reached out they had filled the job. ‍♂️

    I’ve had some interviews in the meanwhile. One was supposed to start calling my references on Tuesday to move forward with the hiring process, but hasn’t called any.

    In the meantime I’ve been wondering whether I want to keep teaching since most of the schools in my area are going to have in person instruction and I’m not sure if I am super comfortable with that as coved trends in the wrong direction.

    I heard about this micro teaching yesterday, and I’m sure there will be families looking for this in my area. Not sure how to find them though.
     
  8. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Jul 19, 2020

    We have love Facebook groups that are filled with parents taking about this micro teaching. I’d recommend that you join any local parent-centric groups you can find. You could also post on Nextdoor.
     
  9. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Some parents on Nextdoor are asking for teachers for their "pods" and my friend was just telling me she's seen jobs posted on regular job websites- just do a google search. She's actually considering applying for some of these- she said some of them are actually offering a decent salary and even benefits. For me personally, I don't want to leave the security of my current job. I don't think these "pods" will stick around next year. But for someone currently in between jobs anyway, it makes a lot of sense to pursue something like this for this school year.
     
  10. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Who is advertising for these jobs? The parents? Are they going to pay out of their own pockets? I can see this being a big issue when people start saying it's not "fair" because the kids whose parents can't afford it will be left out.
     
  11. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    I see it as the same issues with private schools, homeschool coops, etc. I've had several parents ask if I was considering doing that, including one whose daughter and I bonded last year over being diabetic. If I could make enough doing that, I 100% would.
     
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  12. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    I don't really see it as being different than anything else in this country. If you have the wealth, you can buy what you want. If you don't, you're left out. This isn't a case of paying for a FAPE. This is a case of parents deciding that they want something different, something that is (to them) preferred over whatever it is that the school district is offering. It's really no different than any other issue of the haves and the have-nots that come along with capitalism.
     
  13. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    I know but if there's anything "different" someone will complain. It might not happen but you never know. I already parents whining on some Facebook groups about it.
     
  14. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    The parents are the ones advertising it. Of course it's not fair. That's the way the world works, unfortunately. I get so irritated when I hear people say things like, "It's not that big of a deal because all kids are falling behind right now," or "All kids are experiencing the same thing, and we'll just catch them up next year." No, not all kids are experiencing the same thing AT ALL. Per usual, the haves get ahead while the have nots fall even further behind. Higher SES students may even actually benefit from this whole situation more than they would in "regular school." They'll get even more individual attention and instruction.

    I have seen some calls for wealthier parents to consider chipping in for a lower SES student to join their pod, or for teachers to allow a lower SES student to join for free if the salary still works out okay with all of the other parents paying. While this is a nice thought, even if every single "pod" actually does this (and we know they won't), that still leaves out a whole lot of kids.
     
  15. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Jul 21, 2020

    Parents hire tutors all of the time. This is tutors on steroids. One of the reasons that middle and upper economic families have children who do better academically is because they can tutor by hiring or by own knowledge when their children lag behind.

    There is no equal in life. There never will be.

    Unless the government is going to tell families they cannot homeschool or have additional instruction for their children, there really isn't much that can be done if they hire teachers who are not under contract or others who are knowledgeable.

    This doesn't surprise me that this is happening.
     
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  16. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    It is a nice thought, but if parents are paying additional (beyond taxes) to have their child educated because the school isn't providing what they want or need for their children to progress, I think it would depend on the low SES student. I certainly wouldn't want to bring in a child who is several years behind the group and have all of the teacher's time taken to increasing the skills of a child so far behind. If the child was on par with the rest of the students it is doable and would be a nice thing to do. But how many low SES kids are in the neighborhood forming "pods"? Then is it illegal to identify these low SES kids as such?
     
  17. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    If I was easily offended, which I am not, this could be read as a put down of those who dare provide for their child and do what is necessary for them to achieve closer to their potential. The horror of it all that a parent may want to do something like that.

    Haves and have-nots has now became a put down to those who have.

    Having known people who lived in communist and socialist countries (truly socialist), you have haves and have nots. The ruling class and the masses who don't have much. There is no good reason to strive for more because no matter how hard you work, people get the same.

    Name one society that doesn't have the have and the have nots.
     
  18. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    No, not everything is fair. If a parent wants to pay someone to teach their child then they have the right to do so. I'm just thinking there will be one rotten apple in the district to complain and make it difficult for everyone. Hopefully people will mind their own business and let others do what they want for their children.
     
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  19. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    :agreed:
     
  20. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Either I worded my comment incorrectly or you have misinterpreted - or both. No put down intended, just the opposite intended, in fact. My point was simply what you said in your earlier comment: people who want to hire a tutor/teacher on their own, and have the means to do so, have every right and opportunity to do that. I was only intending to point out, in response to another comment, that not everyone who wants to do so can do so, and that's pretty typical in many aspects of our society, not only in education. I was not attempting to comment on other countries or societies, at all. My use of the words "haves and have-nots" was not intended to show judgement of any kind, just the facts of life.
     
  21. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Yes, I agree. But in all aspects of society people find things to complain about. I was commenting more on the general posts I've seen elsewhere when this sort of thing came up. I understand what you're saying. It's not a big deal.
     
  22. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    I know, and I understand what you're saying, too. My most recent comment was in response to a2z's response regarding my previous comment.
     
  23. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    I'm terribly sorry. I have a2z blocked so I didn't see the comment. My apologies. I see your frustration because she never understands my posts either LOL
     
  24. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    My comment was more because of your last sentence that inferred that income equality is because of capitalism which then implies that socialism or some other government form must be better and would not lead to income inequality.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2020
  25. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Oh, no. I was not intending to comment on one type of society being better than another. I was, more or less, just trying to say that it is what it is in our current society where some are wealthier than others.
     
  26. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Sorry. I wasn't intending to stir up anything.
     
  27. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    No worries. Me either.
     
  28. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Getting back to the topic of teachers being hired by families....I recently learned that in my state it is illegal for homeschooling parents to hire teachers. It may not be like that in other states, but it’s worth checking out the laws in your area before you agree to such a job.
     
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  29. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Interesting. Is there a rationale behind that? And does the law clearly define teacher to mean an actual certified teacher, or does it just mean that you can't hire someone from outside the home (anyone who is willing to teacher/tutor, regardless of qualifications)?
     
  30. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Also, where will these lessons be taking place? Are you comfortable going into peoples' homes? Can you possibly do some work outside? How responsible will you be for the students since you won't have any protection from a union if something happens?
     
  31. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I’m not completely knowledgeable about that particular law, but I believe it has to do with having one or more paid teachers (other than the parent) and becoming an illegal private school or illegal home daycare. There are some pretty in-depth laws in my state about these topics, and everything is very clearly defined as far as what homeschooling parents are and are not allowed to do. In particular, the exchange of money seems to be what differentiates a co-op of homeschooling parents getting together to share resources and knowledge from running what is deemed by the state as an illegal private school or home daycare.
     
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  32. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Companion

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    Sounds like another instance of laws and customs whose basis have been challenged by the occurrence of a pandemic.
     
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  33. Bizkid

    Bizkid New Member

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    I've been following and also doing my own research into the getting hired by a family/pandemic pod and it seems like a logistical nightmare for everyone involved.

    Back to the original post, I did get an offer on Wednesday from a school that's about 45 miles from my house and for about $40,000 less than I was making at my old district. Their plan is to be teaching from the school 5 days a week via a combination of hybrid and remote, with lessons being streamed to remote students.

    I also had a second interview with a separate school district on Tuesday. I'm more excited about this job for a variety of reasons. I was told they'd have a decision by Thursday, because the person who interviewed me doesn't work Fridays over the summer.

    1. Like many of you, I'm not keen on being back in the school with 1,000 students a day. My wife works in a hospital and is going back to in-person work next month, and we have two small kids and I don't want to risk getting sick.
    2. The offer I did get placed me at MA+24 and 6 years. I have 7.5 years experience and was MA+60 at my old district, and I couldn't find anything in their contract to justify not getting what I'm worth. Anyone have experience with negotiating this?
    3. I reached out to the interviewer yesterday from school #2 to tell her I had an offer from another school, and ask if there had been any decision made. She didn't respond, and is now off for the rest of the weekend. Should I reach out to the principal or the STEM Coach who conducted the first round interview and ask for an update?
     
  34. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    In my experience, school districts have policies (official, board-approved policies) that determine the step and lane maximum at which new employees can enter. Again in my experience, you're likely to be given full credit for your education (as long as its relevant to teaching assignment), but you may not be given full credit for your experience. This, in some ways, serves as a benefit to teachers who stay with the same district long-term. They get paid more than newcomers with the same years of experience (after a certain point) because they've been committed to the district. In one district where I worked, new teachers were only given credit up to two years experience. In another, new teachers were given credit up to ten years experience. It's very district-dependent, and it's rarely negotiable. Are you certain that this district has an education lane that goes about the MA+24 but not beyond your number of earned credits? Maybe they aren't offering you MA+60 because they don't have that as an option.
     
  35. Bizkid

    Bizkid New Member

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    The district contract says they will honor up to 10 years of previous experience. They do have a MA+36 and MA+45 lane. I've seen some schools won't honor education credit if it's not relevant, but I have a masters in education and my earlier one in accounting. The position is teaching mostly accounting, including dual credit with the local college, and I probably wouldn't be eligible to teach the dual credit without that masters.
     
  36. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    In that case, you may want to contact HR or the principal to ask about why you were given a lower offer than their policies allow for.
     
  37. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    You seem to understand the situation well. I would put going back to your former school as a very last resort. One to do only if you absolutely need it to pay bills. In the meantime, you seem to know yourself and what you want. I'd work hard at getting a job elsewhere before settling for your last resort.
     

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