This is my 4th year of teaching 3rd grade and my second year at my current school. After a first year I never thought I'd make it through alive, I am feeling more confident and capable as an educator. In the beginning I thought I'd be part of the statistics that show most new teachers quit before their 5th year, however I intend to pass that milestone next year (and celebrate with champs of course!) Last year was terrific. I was welcomed in with open arms to a staff that operates as a supportive unit. Every teacher in the building is generous with sharing resources and I genuinely believe we're after the same goals. This year I feel the same way about my colleagues, but I am at my wits-end with our administration. At staff meetings we're told on one hand that our P believes that our instruction is sound and that what we do each day matters but in the same breath we're told that our teaching bars need to be raised. We're told that we need to believe that all students can learn (and I think we agree on that) but when I bring students to him for tutoring opportunities I'm told that they'll never pass the test and it'd be a waste of resources to include them in tutoring. We had conferences last month and were discouraged from telling parents that due to a new state law their children may be retained if they don't achieve a particular score on the upcoming assessments. My team and I couldn't support that and ended up telling parents who of course had more questions for us than we had answers but at least they are aware of the possibilities. This week took the cake. I don't send students to the office regularly. I know that each time I ask for intervention from the administration, it communicates a message to my students that I'm not capable. My classes are learning communities and 90% of the students in my class are united towards common goals (behavior, academic, social, etc.) It takes hard work but I believe this type of community is important. This week one of my students who has struggled with behavior and consequences all year kicked a chair across the room when the class was seated on the floor and threw supplies. He then stormed out of the room and began hitting his head against and kicking the wall. I called down to the office and asked for back up. My P arrived and talked to the student about the poor choices he was making and even threatened possible suspension if the student would not cooperate. He took the student back to his office where he remained for an hour or so. Lunchtime came and while I served my duty the same student came in with a huge grin and informed me he would be attending a portion of recess. I asked him to return to the office after lunch to see how much recess he would partake in. Sure enough, he received the entire 30 minutes. I never heard from our Principal about the situation and the student was sent back to class after recess. At that point, I felt completely devalued. Anyone else feel like their P or one person on the staff is at the core of nearly all of the building problems? I've never seen such low morale in a workplace as their is in my school this year.