How did you know it was time to change schools?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by yellowdaisies, Nov 15, 2016.

  1. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 15, 2016

    For those of you who have moved schools and/or districts for reasons other than relocating, how did you know it was time to make a change?

    I'm dealing with this right now, and feeling curious about others' similar (or not so similar) experiences.
     
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  3. heatherberm

    heatherberm Cohort

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    Nov 15, 2016

    My husband started emailing me job listings. ;)

    I love teaching and love being around kids, but I was starting to dread going to work. Even the weekends were bad because all I could think about was how soon I had to go back to work. I started putting off work (lesson planning, etc.) that I used to enjoy. I was getting more impatient with kids and co-workers, something that is very unlike me. But thinking about how much I didn't want to go to work was the biggie.
     
  4. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 15, 2016

    I can relate to so much of this. If you don't mind sharing (and feel free to decline!), what made you feel this way? Did things get better when you moved? I've always been SO passionate about teaching. It's my 5th year and I'm hoping my unhappiness is due to my location being wrong for me and not the entire teaching profession. Sigh.
     
  5. linswin23

    linswin23 Cohort

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    Nov 16, 2016

    I was in a very toxic school last year and the year before. Three years before being there I was at a start-up charter that was amazing and I loved it. It was a lot of work, but I loved it so very much.

    I decided I needed to leave my previous school because I was becoming angry at everything and it takes a lot for me to get really angry. My anger from work was spilling into my personal life. It was a rough two years....

    I'm now at a new school and I am so very happy here.
     
  6. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Nov 16, 2016

    I am getting tired of my long commute and I don't want to move to the district I work in. There are also more opportunities for professional learning in the district I live in. However, it is also fiercely competitive to get a job in my desired district - I've been trying for 4 years and I've only had 2 interviews in that time. (One of those interviews was a favour from one principal to another, I wasn't actually being considered for the position).
     
  7. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Nov 16, 2016

    I was tired of being embarrassed of telling people where I taught. My former school is in the middle of several highly visible court cases and audits, and the results may end up severely cutting staff, if not shutting it down completely. That was all anyone wanted to talk about when I mentioned my school.
     
  8. heatherberm

    heatherberm Cohort

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    Nov 16, 2016

    For me, it was a number of things. The position wasn't the best fit for me to begin with - I preferred mid-elementary and it was middle school, I preferred special ed and it was gen ed - but I needed a job and it was the one I was offered. It was also a very high needs school (highest poverty, violent neighborhood, regularly failing school) with a lot of traumatized kids. I loved them like crazy and the support staff we had was amazing, but we just didn't have the amount of support, emotionally and behaviorally, that the kids really needed. There was a change in administration every year I was there and the newest administration made a lot of changes that, while maybe helpful in the long road, created a lot more work for the teachers. The new principal was also one of those "There's always more you can do if you just care enough" people and it really wore me down. I was coming in early and staying late every day and still not getting through the work I was expected to do.

    I *just* made the change - like, this is my first full week at the new school - so I'm sure we're still partly in a honeymoon phase, but this position (special ed, grades 3 and 4 with a tiny bit of 1) is a much better fit for me and the building, while still high poverty with kids who need a lot of extra love, is a better match for me too, I think - a little smaller, a little quieter, established and stable administration.

    So it's early, but I will say, I felt so much lighter the day I told my old principal I was putting in my notice. My commute doubled and I took a decent pay cut, but I just knew immediately that as guilty as I felt about leaving in the middle of the year, it was the right choice for me. Even if this goes sideways in the next year, I'm glad I made the change instead of trying to hang on. I don't know what your situation is, but I think if you've loved teaching in the past, you should try making a change before you give up on it completely. I've seen too many people on these boards and other places say that making that one change made all the difference for them.
     
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  9. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    Nov 16, 2016

    ,
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
  10. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    Nov 16, 2016

    When I started to be unhappy. It was that simple.

    I could give you a bunch of reasons why, but the main thing was I was unhappy and lost my love for teaching at that school.

    I've since regained my passion and love for teaching.
     
  11. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 16, 2016

    I love that you put this so simply, because I can relate so strongly. I hope that will be my experience as well.

    I feel kind of ridiculous about it because I don't have a shocking story about a horrible administrator or evil coworkers or awful students/parents or anything like that... but it's just a lot of little things of varying degrees of importance that have contributed to wanting to leave.
     
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  12. heatherberm

    heatherberm Cohort

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    Nov 17, 2016

    yellowdaisies, I think death by a thousand paper cuts can be even worse sometimes because it does feel like it shouldn't be *that* bad... but it still is.
     
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  13. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Nov 17, 2016

    I felt like I was undervalued and invisible except when my admin needed something. It probably sounds petty, but the last straw for me was when admin formally acknowledged the accreditation team with these cool plaques during a faculty meeting. I was pulled from other training at the last minute in order to serve on that team because admin was in a bind, and I ended up writing an entire section completely on my own. In spite of my contribution, I was not recognized in any way. Like, I don't need recognition, but if they're going to give it, I at least want my name announced, you know? It honestly hurt my feelings a lot, and I am usually pretty thick-skinned at school. That was the day I started exploring my options.

    Now that I'm in a different school (same district), I see how terribly toxic my previous school was. I should have left years before I did. I am so much happier now.
     
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  14. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Nov 17, 2016

    I am on my 2nd school and really loving it. The administration is wonderful, and I feel my art of teaching has grown by leaps and bounds. I was actually had a contract nonrenewal at my last school, but looking back, it wasn't a good fit at all. My team lead was faltering, my mentor, while a great lady, was giving advice that conflicted with the advice from my principal. It wasn't right.
     
  15. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    Nov 17, 2016

    I'm one who relocated, and I loved my previous position, but now I'm in a position where I feel like most others who have posted here. I know I have to leave this year because I currently hate my job, the community, the admin, and while some students are fantastic, I hate this population. I am glad that this will only last a year, and I'm out of here.

    My boyfriend has seen how stressed out I've become this year and how unhappy I am and has been pushing my to leave mid-year. I can't because I don't like quitting half-way like that, but it does show me how much this school has affected me and how it's starting to affect the people in my life.
     
  16. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 20, 2016

    This was so helpful to me. I've been carrying it in my mind since you posted it to help keep my sanity. Thank you. :)

    Undervalued and invisible...sounds familiar. That sounds pretty miserable. I'm so glad you've found somewhere better that values you.

    I don't think my population is for me, either. I want to go back to a title 1 school so badly. I hope you're able to find something much better for next year!
     
  17. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Nov 20, 2016

    In general, I still like my school. However, my school has recently gone from "I love my job so much" to "It's okay." I'm still happy, but the factors that made it an amazing place to work have slowly disappeared. That, coupled with a desire to move also, makes me think this may be my last year there.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2016
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  18. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 20, 2016

    I've left jobs for the following reasons:
    A move to another state
    Money (doubled my salary!)
    Better opportunity for professional growth/better fit
     
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  19. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 20, 2016

    I could have written your post almost word for word, except I'm becoming less and less happy as the year goes on. Anyway, I can SO relate.

    Money is definitely a major factor for me. In the district I'm hoping to get into, it's a moderate raise next year ($8k-ish), but it's about a $23k difference four years later between my current school and that district. Not something I can ignore anymore.
     
  20. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nov 20, 2016

    8K is a NICE raise!
     
  21. Mr. Jones

    Mr. Jones Guest

    Nov 20, 2016

    Generally, I'm a person that like to challenge myself. I really don't like staying in one place for a long time. Trust me, once you jump out of you comfort zone, you will feel yourself stronger than you can imagine you could be.
     
  22. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 20, 2016

    That's true! I definitely shouldn't downplay it. And the pay difference gets larger every year.
     
  23. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    Nov 24, 2016

    I see in later posts you mention pay as something you can't ignore. That was always the biggest factor in me feeling unhappy where I was. I felt I wasn't being valued by being so underpaid. I knew there were limitations in how much private school could pay me, but it was really hard to ignore. There were many other little things too for me that lumped together made me leave.

    I also knew that it wasn't a forever school. I always called it my stepping stone, my inbetween. Spending 5 years there was too long. But it all worked out in the end.

    Make your move, I know it's still many months away, but don't stay another year (next year) without attempting to interview at other schools if you are unhappy.
     
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  24. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 24, 2016

    I'm at a charter, so it's similar with the pay, except I'm not totally convinced that they CAN'T pay us more, which makes it worse. Our executive director got rid of column increases 2 years ago and basically said extra education and units don't matter. I get a tiny masters stipend. In other districts, I would get tons of extra pay for my extra units (I have 60 post bacc units). It feels like I'm being disrespected, like my extra work and higher education that I worked so hard for (and have plenty of student loans for) doesn't matter. It's really bothered me this year. So the pay is a major frustration for me. As you said, there are many other things happening as well.

    I really want to switch to a public district (funny since I've been a major charter advocate on this forum over the years) for a variety of reasons. And most of all, I really want to go back to teaching in a title 1 school. Working with students from low income communities is the reason I became a teacher, and I really think that's where I belong.

    I just hope it works out. I'm very unhappy this year, and I honestly have trouble imagining staying another whole year after this.

    I'm so glad it worked out for you in the end. I hope I'll have a similarly happy ending eventually.
     
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2016
  25. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Nov 24, 2016

    I feel the same way.

    People always ask if I wish the district office would place me at a high performing school on the "nicer" side of town. I simply say, "I'm perfectly content right where I am."
     
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  26. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I honestly feel that the district office will always keep me at low performing schools on the "wrong side of the tracks." That's where most of our Spanish-speaking families live and we need bilingual admin at those school sites.

    Most of our monolingual administrators are placed at low needs sites (very few ELs and mid-high SES). I'm sure they have issues of their own at their schools, but they most definitely don't face struggles that come with having several hundred ELs and over 90% socioeconomically disadvantaged students.
     
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  27. yellowdaisies

    yellowdaisies Fanatic

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    Nov 25, 2016

    I'm in my third year at a mostly middle and upper middle class school with few ELs and IEPs. I'm not sure why it's taken this long to figure it out, but it's definitely not for me.

    I always love reading your posts because you feel so strongly about where you are and you're passionate about serving your population. I think that's amazing and I want that for myself eventually.
     
  28. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    Nov 26, 2016

    See we are definitely not that far off with our mindset. My school at the very end decided to cut my salary 5k. Like what a slap in the face!!! I worked there for 5 years and never got any type of raise, but you wanna cut my salary because you changed my position to prek?!?! The straw that broke the camels back. I already had one foot out the door. I was already interviewing, but I sure as heck did everything in my power not to come back. It was so damn disrespectful. AND I had just completed my masters. Like what?!?

    So yeah disrespect played a key part to that unhappiness. I didn't feel valued. I stayed too long because the job market in my area was really tough. But I wasn't going to stand for that. I wound up taking a job that fell through last minute and I was left unemployed for about 3 months before I could sub then I became a para for the remainder of the year. The next school year I had a teaching position (my current one) and in hindsight I would go all those hardships again if it meant never walking through that door again to be treated like my time and education didn't matter.

    I'm much happier working in a school with a union, free benefits and an actual pay scale with raises. My next goal is to obtain tenure so I feel secure and I can move around my public school system if I become unhappy in my current school in the future, all while keeping my salary, benefits and seniority.
     
  29. Keith Schoch

    Keith Schoch New Member

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    Nov 26, 2016

    One day in August, my (teacher) wife asked, "Do you want to go in and get your room ready?" and I replied, "I don't feel like it." I was interviewing three days later and packing two days after that. When you are unhappy and you've tried without success to make a go of it, it's time to move on.
     
  30. ChildWhisperer

    ChildWhisperer Groupie

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    Nov 27, 2016

    I've been feeling like quitting since the 3rd week of school.
    I enjoyed my job last year. I loved my job at previous schools.
    I'm actually the opposite with those who say they love teaching low income. I felt more appreciated with the high income populations. I never had problems, my students and they're parents were always so grateful, I just loved my job. Unfortunately I moved a couple hours away so I had to find a new school.
    Last year was my first year in title 1 and it wasn't bad. I didn't hate it, but can't say i loved it. But i did like it enough to come back this year.
    This year is worse. It's super stressful, I've gotten more annoyed with my coworkers, the parents feel entitled, the kids don't listen, they've gotten more strict on everything (I can't even send home notes unless they are worded a very specific way! I can't change one bit of it. I have to use the exact wording i'm given), I feel like I've lost all freedom to do what I want, and. . I dread going to work now.
    I'm forcing myself to finish out the year, but it's getting harder to do..
    So. . that's how I know it's time to change schools :) I'll probably go back to private school..
     
  31. tchr4vr

    tchr4vr Comrade

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    Nov 27, 2016

    The first change, three years ago, was due to backstabbing co-workers and lieing admininstrators. I flew as quickly as I could to another school, which I knew wasn't going to be my forever school, but I was good with it, until they got a new P. He took a school that was steadily growing and becoming better and put it in the toilet. Treated the teachers like **** and let the troublemakers run the school in the name of PBIS. My new school now is wonderful. I was worried when I changed that there was more to it than just the admin, but I'm glad to say that I have my passion back and I enjoy going to work again. I'm so glad I did, too--My old district fired its superintendent and the entire school board about two weeks ago for losing half a million dollars. There was also a sexual assault of a freshman by four seniors during the school day in the school bathroom. THose same seniors were the ones last year that were my juniors who were able to do whatever they wanted. They've gone through five English teachers since the school year started and still have empty positions.
     
  32. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Nov 27, 2016

    That's crazy.
     
  33. Ankit

    Ankit New Member

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    Nov 30, 2016

    Hello
    The time, When you come to know that your skills are not growing, is the time to change the school.
    Thanks
     
  34. Lisabobisa

    Lisabobisa Companion

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    Nov 30, 2016

    Too much work and not enough recognition.

    I'm happy I left.
     
  35. learnpreschool

    learnpreschool New Member

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    Nov 30, 2016

     
  36. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Nov 30, 2016

    I think I may have hit my limit with this today too. :(

    Oh well, change is good...
     

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