I am really scared.

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by ecteach, Sep 26, 2020.

  1. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    Sep 26, 2020

    Our kids return full time Monday, and I am really scared. I really think my principal thinks I am being dramatic. However, I have recently lost someone really close to me (not from COVID-19), and death seems so real to me now---like a REAL possibility that's right around the corner.

    I have students who can not keep a mask on due to behavioral/developmental issues. I have students who can not understand what socially distancing even means. The spit, lick things, etc.

    I am literally making myself sick over this.

    Those who have gone back, please tell me everything will be okay. I actually wrote a resignation letter yesterday, but I really do need a job. I am at the point where I don't know if I am the best person for the job though.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2020
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  3. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Sep 26, 2020

    We are 8 weeks in with staff and 5 weeks in with students. I was nervous to go back but once I got back into things I've been thoroughly enjoying myself. It's been really good for my mental health to have a reason to "get ready" in the morning, see and talk to people in person, have a better sense of purpose, etc. Online learning in the spring was a lot less work but also felt sort of futile, at least in my position.

    We have not had any cases yet. That said, my district is very serious about masks. Students who cannot or will not wear one must enroll in e-learning. That includes students with IEPs. My director says mask wearing is now an "essential life skill." We have a self-contained Autism program in my building. I thought it would be a disaster in there but even all of the kids in that program wear their masks. Some districts in other parts of the state are not requiring masks, and as you can guess, they were quarantined very quickly for cases.

    Have you looked to see if there are any online positions in your area? Or really, in any part of the state- if it's online, it doesn't matter how close you live. My district is offering an online option for families who were not comfortable coming back. They begged teachers to switch to the e-learning school and ended up moving people involuntarily. Then we reached a point where they couldn't pull more people out of buildings due to distancing rules. We had to hire about 7 online teachers and my district is tiny. My sped teammate was involuntarily moved, and then they had another position that they couldn't fill. They ended up going with a contracting agency to fill it.
     
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  4. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Groupie

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    Sep 26, 2020

    I am very sorry about your loss. Often our own mortality does kick in when someone close to us passes. Do you have grief time in your contract or is it in FML? You get paid.

    If you are making yourself sick over it ( I have done the same w/ another problem), can you take a years leave of absence? If you have tenure, you can get a psych to write you are under their care and maybe go see them 1x a month. You could get paid for the 1st 3 months if you have sick days saved.
    I did not go back, but from what I have seen so far, there have not been many cases at schools here despite the lack of seriousness some P's have about the issue.
    I know at least 1 P here who doesn't make the kids wear masks 80% of the time and very little protocol is used in that school from what I hear.
    Kids have been in school for weeks now and I think we have only had 3 cases. ( Not sure.)
    I think the odds are in your favor if you look at stats.
    If you are in good health, I am pretty sure you'll be OK. If you are not in good health , have risk factors, and feel sick over it all, you will still probably be OK if you look at the stats. However, if you really do feel sick about it, I think I'd try to find a way not to go if you can get your job back next yr.
    I hope you feel better soon! <3
     
  5. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Sep 27, 2020

    We've been back face-to-face since the start of our school year just after Labour Day. Parents were given the opportunity to choose face-to-face or virtual schooling and we have about 2/3 of our typical enrollment in the building. Masks are mandatory for all staff and for students in grades 4 - 8. We are provided with medical masks (not N95) and with a shield to wear when distancing isn't possible. Our class sizes are reduced somewhat--15 in grades 1 to 3 and 20 in grades 4 - 8. We have sanitizer and disinfectant wipes in the classroom. Our focus is on masks, hand hygiene and distancing whenever and however possible.

    I'm not frightened at work, but I am uncomfortable at times. The discomfort is caused by those students who are refusing to wear masks properly or to maintain distance. I'm careful to not be in the room when students have their masks off to eat snacks or lunch and to wash my hands and use sanitizer as much as possible.

    Numbers in our province are starting to rise dramatically, but in my community they are low, so we are still in a good place.

    All that said, it is wonderful to see the kids and to be with them every day. They are where my energy for teaching comes from and I struggled when teaching through a screen.

    Take care of yourself.
     
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  6. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Sep 27, 2020

    Don’t let anyone tell you how to feel. I wish I could have retired this year, but it’s too early. With some medical intervention I can sleep and I’m not so anxious. 3weeks in now. Mask wearing is just another rule to enforce. It’s uncomfortable when I think about how many surfaces I touch. We keep sending kids home with “symptoms “ but they’ve all had negative tests so far. I wish you all the best. Take care of yourself.
     
  7. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Sep 27, 2020

    I am eligible for full pension after the 2021-2022 school year. If I could afford to retire early, I would, but it would reduce my pension by over 25%, which just isn't possible when I'm on my own. I'll need to stick it out, at least through this year.
     
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  8. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Sep 28, 2020

    My DH went back today with kids. He said it wasn’t bad. With that said, it’s strange enough that he’s considering retiring this year (Full benefits) instead of waiting three more years for max benefits.

    We don’t go back with kids until at least October 19th. I’m trying not to worry too much, but it’s always a concern. I can retire in October of next year. I’m considering it.
     
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  9. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Sep 29, 2020

    I am terrified about returning to the building, to be blunt. I've already gotten into it with my new principal, because she feels that I'm being dramatic and that it's not a big deal. When I have been in the building, I have seen employees wearing their masks improperly or not at all, and this includes at least one person who works in the same room as I do. It's very upsetting to me that going back to the building is even a consideration, and it's even more upsetting to me that the people in charge don't seem to care that some of us are scared and worried.

    So, I get you. I have no solutions, though.
     
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  10. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Sep 29, 2020

    I’m also very scared to be required to go back. I wish they’d give teachers the option to work from home, like they plan to give our students.
     
  11. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Groupie

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    It is interesting how teacher's opinions are valued some places and not at all other places. Over 2/3 of the teachers here surveyed reported they were highly concerned about in person classes. The district only made online optional to students.
    A district a distance from here was on the news and stated they CARED about the safety of teachers and students. They went to online after the teachers voted the same way. I totally lost respect of our system. It just goes to show: Put your family and life first, not school.
    They don't care if they don't give you an option.
     
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  12. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Nov 20, 2020

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  13. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Nov 21, 2020

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  14. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Groupie

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    Nov 23, 2020

    I tried it too, but wants me to pay $1. I deleted pay pal after I blew too much money using it....lol, so I can't read it.
     
  15. whizkid

    whizkid Groupie

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    Nov 25, 2020

    What are the chances of your district shutting down completely at least in January if you all had to attach a number to it from 1-10 with 10 being a definite yes?
     
  16. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Nov 25, 2020

    5.
    We’ve been teaching face to face since the school year started. We were forced to shut down for 3 days when 2 teachers tested positive. Our superintendent is committed to keeping us open but there are many positives these days.
     
  17. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    3.
    We've been face-to-face since the start of school. We did have 4 classes sent into isolation due to one confirmed and 2 probable cases, but everyone is back in the building now. Right now, decisions are being made on a school-by-school basis, with complete closures only occurring if there is a significant number of cases. The push from the provincial government is to keep schools open "at all costs"; there was a push from school boards to extend our Christmas Break by one week, but that request was denied.
     
  18. whizkid

    whizkid Groupie

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    Hopefully that cost doesn't get too costly.

    I'd put our number at 6. Maybe even 7.
     
  19. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Nov 26, 2020

    I fully expect to be back at school for in person learning in January. My super already announced a closure through Christmas break, but there is a huge push to open schools at all cost, especially elementary schools. Secondary may remain remote. The governor is pushing the idea that school is the safest place to be and that elementary should be open regardless of virus numbers. There was actually some meeting of bigwigs today (governor, superintendents, department of ed people) to talk about how to get schools open for in person learning again.
     
  20. whizkid

    whizkid Groupie

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    Nov 26, 2020

    [​IMG]
     
  21. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Nov 26, 2020

    This sounds very similar to the philosophy here and why we have been face-to-face since school started in September.
     
  22. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Nov 26, 2020

    Yeah, my district had adopted a data metric that said when we would be in person vs. when we would be remote, based on virus numbers. Then they actually put it into our contract, so when the metric said schools should be closed, we had to close due to that. I think originally they assumed virus numbers in schools would mirror those in the community, but that's really not what happened. We had very few cases and zero cases where others in the school got the virus after being exposed to a positive case. So then there was a lot of frustration when they followed the metric and closed.

    Our super has been talking about meeting with the union to talk about changing the metric. If they change the contract, the union would have to approve via vote, but honestly I think many teachers would vote for going back in person. People in my district really don't like being remote. They had to involuntarily move people to staff our e-learning school (we offered that as an option for families). I think people also felt pretty safe with how it went when we were in person (until Halloween).
     
  23. nklauste

    nklauste Comrade

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    Nov 30, 2020 at 9:14 AM

    I would say we are a 1-2. Our super is very motivated to keep elementary in person (we have been in person K-6, hybrid (every other day) 7-12 since we started school in September). We have been above the threshold for what the state (in August) said should be fully distance learning, but since they can't trace any cases to being exposed at school we haven't changed our learning model. The county next to us has the largest per capita rate of active cases in our state (and that is where many of our residents grocery shop and work), but that still hasn't pushed us into a more restrictive model yet.
     

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