Should I Find a New Profession?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by CCG611, Jan 3, 2021.

  1. CCG611

    CCG611 New Member

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    Jan 3, 2021

    I graduated with a masters in May (1 year degree program). I've been teaching 1st grade since August in a hybrid model through the pandemic. I love the connection with the kids and I know I work well with them (engaging, creative, etc.). Otherwise I hate this job.
    The curriculum is crammed down my throat so I can't do anything of my own, the pay is extremely low in an area where the price of living is high. I work on Sundays, overtime and of course the shit pay is an extra smack in the face. I don't get along with my grade team members, there is always more work and expectations being pushed upon us by the district. I feel like my voice as a teacher is never heard and the district doesn't give a shit about the teachers.
    I'm intelligent, I have these skills, but I feel I can't use my own knowledge and skills in this job b/c the district/curriculum/my other grade level teachers won't allow it. I feel like a glorified babysitter or a dead eyed 60's housewife. I'm becoming what I hate.
    Does it get better? Will I ever get treated with respect, be heard, be able to break free from restrictions? Do I hold out for longer? I paid out the wazoo for my degrees which I'll forever be in debt to with the salary I make. Could I even afford going back to school to find a different job?
     
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  3. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Comrade

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    Jan 3, 2021

    What are your alternatives? Considering other things you might do, would you need to go back to school? My experience is that very few people have degrees in the jobs they are actually doing.
     
  4. CCG611

    CCG611 New Member

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    I've been struggling with alternatives as well. Is every profession as frustrating/overwhelming as teaching? Will I get another job only to still not be heard or respected? My degree is a bit more transferrable to HR jobs, paralegal, etc. I also love working with kids, I just need to be adequately paid for it and treated well?
     
  5. viola_x_wittrockiana

    viola_x_wittrockiana Comrade

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    Jan 3, 2021

    Try another school before giving up if that's an option. Some buildings are just plain toxic, others aren't necessarily the environment for you.
    Because you have a masters, if you can suck it up for a few years of experience, you could teach at a CC. Again, since you have a masters, you could also try for corporate trainer -type positions. Both of those come with a bit more freedom to set things up the way you choose, not the way you're told to.
     
  6. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    Jan 3, 2021

    Teaching is not for everyone. There's no shame if you find you lack the skills necessary—just like not everyone could be a politician or a salesperson. However, if you feel like you are gaining skills, teaching might be great for you.

    It sounds like your school or district is not the right place for you. I would suggest looking elsewhere for a job at the end of the school year. The testing mania of the past 20 years has forced many schools to take decision making from the teacher, but few schools are taking to the point where yours is.

    I love my job, my students and enjoy my co-workers. There are great jobs out there.
     
  7. AmberP

    AmberP Rookie

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    Jan 5, 2021

    Hi. I understand how you feel, I found myself in the same position at my first job. In order not to put up with it, I work as a private teacher. It's so much better, because kids come to learn, and there's no pressure from others. I'm sure everything will be fine.
     
  8. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Comrade

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    Jan 5, 2021

    Doesn't sound like the OP thinks she lacks skills. Rather, she thinks she is not free to apply the skills she has.
     
  9. Iris1001

    Iris1001 Rookie

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    Jan 5, 2021

    I was in your shoes at one point. I was in a terrible school environment where nobody respected me and I had no resources or support from admin. However, it DOES get better once you find the right fit of a school. I think you should try another school before giving up on teaching completely. I wish you the best of luck. :heart:
     
  10. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Jan 6, 2021

    Yes. You should leave the profession.
     
  11. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Comrade

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    Jan 6, 2021

    I'm interested in your line of thought here.
     
  12. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    Jan 6, 2021

    That's what I gathered from reading the post. It seems like this type of school would be good for teachers who liked pre-written lessons and everything planned out for them to teach in a certain way. I certainly have come across teachers like that and if you're not that kind of teacher it's difficult to work that way. I would say stick it out for the rest of the year (do the best you can so you can get a good recommendation) so you have experience to put on your resume then start applying elsewhere as soon as the positions start popping up in your area.
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2021
  13. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Jan 6, 2021

    There are so many things on OP's list that most likely won't change by just changing schools that I don't feel the OP will be happy remaining in the profession.

    OP complains about low pay - without moving to a high paying state, that won't be changing by staying in the profession. OP complains about canned curriculum and also complains about overtime. Investigating and creating your own takes even longer which means more overtime. OP wants to be treated with respect and be heard. Teaching isn't the profession for that at the present time. Maybe pre-mid-sixties, but not anymore.
     
  14. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Comrade

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    I didn't actually make that connection! I'm embarrassed. It is a very good point.
     
    a2z likes this.
  15. Tyler B.

    Tyler B. Groupie

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    Jan 8, 2021

    There's a school in our district in a low-income area with an autocratic principal whose sole mission is to raise test scores. He puts this above meeting his students' true academic needs. His staff must teach scripted lessons and may not vary even a word. Students are ability grouped across grade levels and are shuttled from room to room with no sense of belonging to a certain teacher. These teachers have the lowest morale and self-confidence of any I've met.

    I teach at a high income school where my principal lets me teach as I wish. I don't use any of the district purchased basals, but use literature to teach literacy. I like the math adoption of 4 years ago, so I use that. I only spend 20 minutes on test-prep before state tests, but every one of my students exceeded on the state test, except 2 sped students. I love my job. I feel creative and impactful. My students and their parents love me. This is in the same district.

    It's possible for a skilled teacher to find the right spot by moving schools. The pay is the same for all of us in the district.
     

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