non-renewal/resignation

Discussion in 'General Education' started by futureteach24, Feb 9, 2014.

  1. futureteach24

    futureteach24 Companion

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    Feb 9, 2014

    I found out last week I can resign or be non-renewed. I am a 2nd year teacher that found myself in a bad position: no classroom, no textbooks, no content materials (unless I bought or borrowed them), and the "low track" classes. I was put on an action plan my first year for class management. Since then (and before), I worked diligently to get my skills up. In October, I called the union for help when the last two classes of the day were not going well. They came in and said there seemed to be a high concentration of kids that wouldn't "do what I asked because it seemed like a good idea". Their recommendation was to post the rules, remind them of the rules, and write referrals. I did as they asked but gave detentions vs. referrals because the admin support just isn't there. I also went to a class management conference, read an additional book, watched a DVD, did a lit review on management, etc. Things improved. They were not perfect but drastically better...all of my classes were functioning.
    Well, at my first end of plan meeting, the P said that their was some improvement but not enough, he cited that my dept chair said one of my classes was really bad. He also claimed I never talked to her and brought into question whether I talked to the mentor (I pulled out documentation for both). They told him what the dept. chair said was hearsay and he could not use it. Btw, they went back and checked and the dept chair said that she was very impressed and that I had a strong start to the semester. The union told me he made it up. P then came in the following week and did a class walk through in that hour and most of it was lies. I told the union but they said there was nothing they could do. During our meeting last week, when he brought up that the dept chair wouldn't even "go to bat for me", the union pres told him that wasn't the impression she got at all but he insisted that it was true. When I said, I have done the things on the action plan (it included numerous class observations, meeting with different teachers, etc.) and am confused and why was he non-renewing me...he brought up what he claims the dept chair said and the recent class obs (which he made up).
    I am devastated and depressed. When I started this job, I did not have the skills to manage some of my classes. I worked hard, took the advice of the union, and things turned around.

    The union told me they would help me write my resignation letter. That I don't have tenure and there was nothing I could do. They told me I had done everything possible to help myself and that they only thing they wished is that I called them sooner. They also said they thought I was a talented and knowledgeable teacher that should continue to teach and that I was still developing and things were improving and "shame on him" for not giving me more time, and that they were baffled as to why he non-renewed me. The pres also said she wished I had called them sooner than Oct. because they might have been able to help sooner and she felt by the time I called, even though things improved, he had already made up his mind.

    What should I do? Thanks for your ideas!
     
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  3. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

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    Feb 9, 2014

    That sounds like a nightmare. I'm am sorry this has happened to you; it sounds like you have done all you could and improved, but that the deck is stacked.

    My advice is to resign and begin all over in a less toxic school. You do not want to stay in a place like that.
     
  4. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Feb 9, 2014

    I agree. There are many stories here of people who moved on successfully after bad experiences. Sometimes a P just doesn't like you and wants you out.
     
  5. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Feb 9, 2014

    Definitely resign. Line up your letters of recommendation. You'll need one from an administrator, so hopefully you get along well with an AP. If you can't get an administrator to write you a letter of recommendation, leave this job off your résumé and tell future interviewers that you were backpacking through Europe.
     
  6. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Feb 9, 2014

    Resign.
     
  7. LisaLisa

    LisaLisa Companion

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    Feb 9, 2014

    You may not get unemployment if you resign. Districts offer resignation and save money if the teacher accepts it.

    Here is the hard truth: until you have tenure the possibility of non-renewal may happen again. Sometimes it is what you are doing as a teacher and sometimes it is a matter of economics.

    You might ask for a letter of reference instead of recommendation. I'd ask for one from an assistant principal or other administrator. You could even ask the principal for the reference letter as it typically describes the dates of employment, job duties, and other non-biased details about your job.

    I'm sorry you have had to go through this.
     
  8. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Feb 9, 2014

    Unfortunately if you don't have tenure there isn't anything the union can do for you. Contacting them earlier wouldn't have made a difference. My former P non-renewed more than 50% of the teachers last year, mostly based on things that she made up. Since they don't have tenure, the P doesn't have to have a reason. I wish people would understand that this is why tenure is important.

    Anyway, ask your union about what to do for future job applications. All of them ask if you have resigned in lieu of termination, so resigning doesn't really make a difference. I know last year our union was somehow able to make it so that the P couldn't tell schools that called for references that people has been non-renewed. They were then able to not put this on their applications through some loophole that they figured out. All of them were able to get other jobs for this year, but I believe that is because they didn't put on their applications that they were non-renewed, and because of the pressure the union put on the P regarding reference calls.
     
  9. comaba

    comaba Cohort

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    Feb 9, 2014

    My district is doing something similar, but they're doing it to tenured teachers. Those with unsatisfactory evals go through several months of remediation. If still unsatisfactory, they're terminated.

    I agree that unsatisfactory teachers shouldn't be teaching, but there's quite a bit of disagreement about some of the things put into the evals and the union doesn't seem to have much power to challenge it.
     
  10. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Feb 9, 2014

    You don't absolutely need a letter of rec from your current admin. I did not have one and I was still hired in May at a wonderful district that I now love after just one 40 minute interview. I used the department chair, my mentor, and a co-teacher for current recs plus a principal and my cooperating teacher from student teaching the year before.

    I would recommend finding someone as close to an admin position as possible to write you a letter though and hopefully it's stellar. Mine were all awesome so I think that helped. Plus I interview well and really connected with the English teacher in the interview.
     
  11. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Feb 9, 2014

    This must be regional. I didn't have a good relationship with my former P and when I interviewed for new jobs this year, I planned to use my first admins for recommendations instead. I also had an instructional coach and team leader from the school I was working in at the time. EVERY district I interviewed for required a reference from my current P. I'd worked for her for less than one year and my previous admins for two, but it didn't matter. Many said it was district policy that they talk to her. Most wouldn't even contact the people I actually put down as references at all, saying that they just needed to talk to my current P. Luckily, my current school called both her and my previous admins, and were willing to take what my first admins said more seriously since I was working for them in the same type of job I have now. They'd already reposted my position once so they took a chance on me. I love my current school also, but I know it's partly luck that got me here!
     
  12. flewthecoop

    flewthecoop Rookie

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    Feb 9, 2014

    I was a non renewed first year teacher last year and was devastated, so I can relate. I truly believe the reason behind my non-renewal was race, as I was the only black teacher in my entire district and felt that parents came down on me very hard, my assistant p constantly lied to me as she was best friends with some of these parents, and as far as my head principal he never came by my room but never had anything good to say to me about my teaching. I was completely blindsided by my non-renewal at the time bc my assistant p, my evaluator, always told me I was doing a good job. I digress.
    I took a couple of days to be sad then emailed one of my favorite college professors who contacted my current school district( without telling me) and set up an interview for me. I also contacted several people I knew cared about me and knew my work ethic, just to know that I did have support and was be in treated very unfairly. I got the job I interviewed for a week later, used up 8 left over sick days, it was april by then, and used that time to clear my mind and not be stuck in a truly toxic environment. The last week of school my blood pressure was somewhere around 160/120 or something, pretty much nearing stroke level.
    Anyways, I'm so much happier. I had chosen to resign because I got my job so soon. Do be aware that you might need unemployment if you can't find another job, that also means you will be forced to select non-renewed. Ask a counselor or another admin you trust to write your letter of rec as well. Know that there are good principals out there and you can really only grow as an educator. Take some time to reflect, then move on. It will be the best thing to do :)
     

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