Ticked off (WARNING-LONG)

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by preschoolgal, Aug 8, 2008.

  1. preschoolgal

    preschoolgal Rookie

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    Aug 8, 2008

    So I went into work today and finally met with my teacher's assistant. I told her that she may want to speak with the principal now that she was back from vacation about her schedule for the year. We now have over 10 children enrolled for the afternoon and legally I cannot be with more than 10 in my room by myself. Last year we were under so the principal had my aide do recess duty for the older grades during lunch. Not a big deal. But I found out today that during her meeting with him, he is still trying to get her to do recess duty for this year. I had asked her how he planned to do so. She said that he would get one of the other teachers from the other grades to watch the preschoolers with me because he felt that continuity would be good for the kids on the playground (meaning having her out there every day). But what about my kids? I would think 8 and 9 year olds could handle change better than my 3 year olds. He also said that giving the teachers recess duty off is one of their perks. That made me furious. What about my aide and myself? We get no breaks (besides our 20 minute lunch) throughout the day. THe other teachers have their specials (PE, library, computer, music, etc.) in which they are without their children. I guess I just don't get it. Our principal said we would discuss this further next week. Any suggestions on how I could handle it?? PLEASE HELP!!!
     
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  3. happypreteach

    happypreteach Rookie

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    Aug 8, 2008

    I don't really have any advice, but I wanted to offer my sympathy. I have experience with a Director who seems to think slightly askew to what reality is as well. It is far more important for your 3 year olds to have continuity. The children in the playground will survive with maybe a floater that is available, or the other teachers may have to alternate. I again want to sympathize with you, directors/principals sometimes just don't see the big picture
     
  4. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Aug 8, 2008

    Honestly, our Aides handle all the recesses. I'm not sure what your setup is. Our Aides split up so we aren't handling all three recess periods. Each of us has to cover at least one. IT IS important to have continuity out there. The adults need to know what the rules is, how they have been applied and be able to make judgements based on these two things as things change. Too many kids on the playground means that they will take advantage of any adult that doesn't firmly know these things, isn't applying them the same and safety is an issue. It actually creates MORE work when we get adults out there that really don't know how we are doing things.

    This includes our Pre-K Aide though our Aides try to go out when OUR class is out there. It doesn't always work out that way though.

    If it were me, I would try to rearrange your class schedule so that whatever you have planned during this time period is less stressing and easier to manage. In my experience, promising someone to come in your class everyday to help you out for a small amount of time usually goes out the window at times when other things come up.

    Also, it is far harder to handle scheduling floater recess duty than floater "helping you out during class" duty. If someone is absent from recess, the P must worry about it more. There is a larger safety issue. If someone doesn't help the certified teacher for a small portion of the day, the P doesn't have to stress as much if it doesn't pan out.
     
  5. chicagoturtle

    chicagoturtle Fanatic

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    Aug 8, 2008

    I have had a similar experience- except for us has been the coverage of the lunch room. We were supposed to have 4 people last year and well 2 were pulled every day- And on days my co-teacher was out (maybe 10-15 or more) I was by myself in a room that was supposed to have 4 people. (We have special ed children). Anyway - I can empathize. You have to watch yourself unfortunately if you are not tenured. You could get the union involved- but watch yourself with that too. Good luck.
     
  6. preschoolgal

    preschoolgal Rookie

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    Aug 8, 2008

    Our schedule is completely different than the school schedule. We eat at different times than anybody else. We don't get recess time at the same time as the older kids either. It is a safety issue for me to have over 10 children in my classroom by myself as well. I just think that if they are going to have the other teachers float in and out of my room during this time and have my aide be on the playground that this could be solved by reversing the people. Why can't the other teachers be out on the playground why my aide is in my classroom? I think he is making this out to be way more complicated than it needs to be.

    The adults available to be outside would know the rules because they are those kids' teachers. They are there day in and day out. Those children would also know those teachers better than they would my aide because they see them on a daily basis. Our preschoolers are not involved in any school activities. We are supposed to be our own separate entity. Therefore, my children do not ever see any of these other teachers. I just think they would be uncomfortable without stability in the classroom. At least that is based on what I know of some of my kids coming back.
     
  7. chicagoturtle

    chicagoturtle Fanatic

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    Aug 8, 2008

    I know it stinks but try to make it positive. I would think
    1) At least they are sending you someone. I know the rule is 1:10, but I was many a time 1:17, last year with 6 IEP children. Illegal or not- unless there is a fire drill or the firemarshall comes in, it is pretty much the principals school to do what they want. Head Start was going to come into our building and speak to our administration- but that leaves us in a bind cause it looks like we "tattle-taled" etc. So I guess be lucky you have someone.

    2) A lot of teachers in K-8 in our school seem to think Pre-K is easy, and all we do is play all day and don't realize a lot of things. Plus they think it is unfair we get an aide. Until they hear, we have kids in diapers, we potty train kids (special ed), we serve meals (and have to eat them)- we have a wider range of abilities than a lot of them do (I've had kids functioning from 18 months - 5 years old) etc. So they may get to see a taste of your world, how hard you work and respect you more. Not saying all of our K-8 teachers do this - but quite a few regulars do.
     
  8. preschoolgal

    preschoolgal Rookie

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    Aug 8, 2008

    Thanks for the support! :love: I guess you are right. I need to see the positive in it. I was just talking to my best friend and she suggests that I recommend suggesting that two teachers be responsible for helping me and they rotate days. That way the kids will eventually become familiar with just those two teachers and will know what to expect and when. I hope that suggestion works!!! *crosses fingers*
     
  9. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Aug 9, 2008

    turtle - you have it exactly right in your last paragraph! I always get the impression from other teachers that I have the easiest job ever. I've gotten things like, "well all you need to do is play with them, how hard can that be?" No respect. It infuriates me.
    Kim
     
  10. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Aug 9, 2008

    Don't mistake someone being the kid's teachers as knowing the outside rules IF they aren't outside enforcing them everyday. It seems they would but I've seen stuff. Also keep in mind I don't know your school set up. Our teachers don't go outside much. If your teachers DO go outside on a regular basis, that changes a lot. It doesn't sound complicated to have a few recess rules to learn and enforce but they get changed (group wise) constantly and things come up constantly that we have to evaluate constantly. It's hard to explain. I just know when there are 40 kids outside doing the same things and trying to get around the rules in 100 different ways, it takes consistent enforcement and consistent knowing how we are enforcing it and how we WOULD enforce it. Shoot we have MEETINGS on this. Recess duty, I want the extra help but only if they are going to be regular enough that I'm not explaining things constantly and redoing stuff OR if we really don't have enough people out there. I know it sounds over the top for recess but kids love to play, they can be sneaky and they do get hurt. You should see the pictures of my youngest with his face completely banged up during recess at his daycare. :eek:

    They could, however, reverse the people situation. You are right that it doesn't make sense that they don't. I suspect, though I can't be sure, that they know they can't get the same teacher outside everyday or even guarantee the same people in your room everyday. I do still agree with recess stability being a bigger safety issue but I never said your situation wasn't one. Ideally speaking, your Aide only goes out to recess when YOUR children go out to recess especially since they are at different times.

    To prevent the "sometimes we have someone and sometimes we don't and it varies constantly" DO say something about it and at least SUGGEST some alternatives. If you go at it that way, you might get what you want.

    Pre-K is right across the hall from me. I do help them when they need it. I cover their recess. I covered K's special needs center (45 min 3x a week). I covered my student's recess. The rest of the day I'm in my 1st grade class. First grade IS a world different than Pre-K but we do have about the same numbers you do and unfortunately all of us, including the Pre-K teacher, we are all without an Aide at some point in the day. I don't know if you have a prep. She has one prep and her Aide monitors nap so she can work then too. She does have a lot on her plate. I just know our school views recess as a bigger safety issue (though we usually don't even have full capacity there either) than any teacher being alone with students for a portion of the day. Ideally it all works out but it doesn't. The worst last year was the part-time drama teacher and part-time aide which means half the K class (half moderate-severe special needs and the other half average to gifted) was without an Aide. That's why I covered part of the week with them and she had more volunteers than any of us did. My teacher rearranged our academic schedule to compensate. There WASN'T enough stability in the K room except the teacher. They did okay but of course it isn't ideal. Do I think that you need to stand up for it? YES YES YES! I just wanted to offer you a different perspective on recess before you touch the wrong toes when you approach your P. Consistent recess coverage IS important. Make sure you respect that opinion your P has and go from there. GOOD LUCK! :2up:
     
  11. inhisgrip20

    inhisgrip20 Comrade

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    Aug 9, 2008

    I would suggest going and speaking with your principal yourself. You said you sent your aide down to talk to him but maybe it will make a difference if it comes from you. Explain to him the situation and why you need your aide in your room in the afternoon. Also stress the importance of consistency with your children. Offer to do a different duty (such as car-rider or bus duty in the afternoon) that wouldn't interfere with your student's education (that way he at least knows you or your aide isn't just trying to get out of duties all together).

    I had somewhat of a similar situation where they wanted my aide to do car-rider duty in the mornings for an hour. It just would not work because it takes all of us to get my 5 students (3 who are in wheelchairs) off the bus and to the room and to get breakfast together and fed. It was just not practical. When I explained this to my principal and offered to switch to afternoon duty instead (which works better for us) she was very understanding and took us off duty all together. I definitely think you should go talk with him personally.
     
  12. Kindtchr

    Kindtchr Comrade

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    Aug 15, 2008

    I agree- you need to share your concerns with your principal & ask if there is some other way to handle coverage. Our school has a list of volunteer parents to come in during recess to help supervise. They are all made aware of the rules & have enough signed up that each has a turn every 3 weeks to a month. One parent is the chairperson & volunteers are responsible for getting a replacement if they can't make it in.

    Good luck.
     
  13. preschoolgal

    preschoolgal Rookie

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    Aug 16, 2008

    Well I did express my concerns with my principal and he really didn't seem to say much about them. But in the end, all worked out well. He decided to go back to how things were done 2 years ago. The school age teachers will do the recess duty and I will keep my aide in my classroom all day. He said he really didn't have any other choice. Thanks to all of you that lent a listening ear!!
     
  14. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Aug 16, 2008

    Glad it worked out!!
     
  15. inhisgrip20

    inhisgrip20 Comrade

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    Aug 16, 2008

    That's great! I know you're relieved to have your para all day. :)
     

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