Well, I believe it's begun

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by shouldbeasleep, Nov 14, 2011.

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  1. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Nov 17, 2011

    Are you soured to all teaching or mostly what you've seen / been forced to handle in your current district? If you teach in the city I think you do, I can understand the burnout. If you've put in your 20 years and think you're ready to call it a career, I can see that. If you're thinking of taking your talents to another school (private or charter), I could see you having a good time there as well.
     
  2. Ambrosegirl84

    Ambrosegirl84 Companion

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    Nov 17, 2011

    This will be my last year teaching for several reasons. First, we are expecting our first child in June and I'll be a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom.

    Second, it's all the crap that is going on that many have mentioned above. All of my aunts and uncles were teachers. Most of them quit and found professions where they were respected and paid several times what they got as teachers. My aunt that stayed in education did have to take early retirement because of parental and administrative pressure ("you can't fail my kid--he's a starter on the football team!"), along with health problems associated with working in a building full of mold and who-knows-what.

    I also have to say I'm losing faith in the public education system--not because of teachers, but rather the restrictions put on them and the parents who allow their brats to stomp all over the teachers and other students with no real consequences.

    Plus, our area is experiencing an unprecedented oil boom that was totally unprepared for. Classrooms are crowded, kids come and go, and many families are living in hotels, campers, or cars. Teachers and other lower-income workers get kicked out of apartments as rents rise to $2000 a month. I just don't think I'm up to the challenge of such a stressful work environment. I applaud those that are!! :dizzy:
     
  3. sonflawah

    sonflawah Companion

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    Nov 17, 2011

    The second PE teacher at my school just quit yesterday. The first PE teacher quit about a month ago.
     
  4. AKPuffin

    AKPuffin Rookie

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    Nov 17, 2011

    I'm resigning at the end of the semester because I'm getting married and moving 4,000 miles from here. Once I get settled in my new home with my husband I do not intend to go back into education.

    I love my current job (most days) and I work at a very good, small public school on a military installation, but I'm exhausted by parents. Most of them are well meaning, helicopter parents, but others are just down right abusive and the apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

    Demands being placed on us by the district are requiring us to spend more time in "professional development" and less time actually collaborating with other teachers or working in our classrooms. I spend 5-6 hours in my classroom each Sunday writing lesson plans, making copies, cleaning the room etc. Each day I work 9 hours or more and I'm just tired. I honestly don't know how people teach well and have families. After 6 years its just time to find something a little less stressful to do.
     
  5. pete2770

    pete2770 Comrade

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    Nov 17, 2011

    In my rural district the teachers all seem very happy. Their pay is decent, and the community respects them. Some of them are getting burned out by the state and federal demands, but overall our community treats them well.

    I don't think I'll really know how I'll do teaching until my student teaching experience. Honestly, I've learned so little about teaching and so much about paperwork (which varies by district anyways so it's all for not) that I feel like my cooperating teacher is going to think I'm some kind of dolt.
     
  6. GTB4GT

    GTB4GT Cohort

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    Nov 17, 2011

    my $.02 after reading through this thread. I am a new teacher after 30 years in the business/industrial field. A lot of teachers seem to not like their jobs due to demands/constraints imposed on them by their administrators or someone above them in the chain of command. When you reach the point where you don't like your job - you are then free to do exactly as you please!! Why do I say this - because losing a job you don't enjoy isn't a bad thing. What crushes the human spirit is to work your tail off at nonproductive things just to keep a job you don't enjoy. That's a bit of a paradox.

    another observation from a "newbie" - I believe left to their own devices, the biggest majority of teachers would do what's best for their students. At the end of the day, the biggest "problem" with education is that it is run/managed by politicians and the governmment.Coming from the private sector, I honestly believe that this is not a recipe for productivity/success/efficiency. At the micro level (at least at the level I have been exposed to), the "little people" - the teachers and administrators are working diligently on behalf of the students. i have nothing but respect for those of you who have chosen this profession as your life calling.Keep up he good work.
     
  7. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Nov 17, 2011

    In what field are people NOT stressed?
     
  8. mom2sands

    mom2sands Comrade

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    Nov 17, 2011

    I concur with so many of the posts I've read! I teach k and everything is so scripted and developmentally inappropriate. We are expected to teach test-taking strategies to them. By next month, we'll probably be filling in scantrons! We are expected to turn water into wine when we have to make the water before we even begin to think about turning it into wine! These kids are coming to us so ill-prepared and our school does not recognize student needs as seen by the teacher. We are expected to have 80% passing on everything, regardless! All we do is test, then retest! My poor kids get one resource per week and they start school 1/2 an hour before most schools. Our grade level meets three morning a week with one of those used to present data. We have a weekly instructional meeting and if a team leader, another mandatory meeting twice a month. We have all kinds of watchdogs glaring over our shoulders. I never expected teaching to be this stressful! My creativity is stifled and I am worn out! Another issue is that discipline is a joke and that special education students are never "diagnosed" until they get to a testing grade--blame is placed on the teacher all along and everyone wonders why these kids can't "pass the test." Sorry for the rant, but I've always wanted to be a potter or a chef--guess I better start honing those skills--at least they allow for creativity!
     
  9. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Nov 17, 2011

    I'm SO glad I switched gears to speech-language pathology! Overall, parents I think are a bit more appreciative/humbled because they know their child has an articulation, language, or fluency problem & they see that the SLP is there to help their child.

    An SLP is not limited to working in schools. They can have their own practice, work in a hospital, rehab clinic, make house calls, etc. Also, they can choose to work w/ toddlers, school-aged kids, the elderly. And if you do work in a school, you're normally at the same school only 2 days a week, so you're assigned to usually 2 schools, so you're not completely stuck w/ the same admin & staff M-F. Plus, the SLPs are kind of their own boss, I mean yes, there's a principal, but SLPs don't have to do a LOT of things the regular ed teachers have to do. There's more freedom.
     
  10. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Nov 17, 2011


    I'm fairly certain I know where you live. My hat's off to you for dealing with all that.
     
  11. Teachforlife

    Teachforlife Rookie

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    Nov 17, 2011

    What is happening in our district? Well, the GBI is just now finishing up their investigation on cheating scandals throughout the elementary and middle schools in our district. A principal in one of the elementary schools has been arrested along with her husband for falsifying government documents in order to get free lunches for her kid. She makes $96,000 per year. She was given a 5 day PAID suspension and then a 15 day unpaid suspension from her job. But she will be right back to being a principal after that. Our superintendent, when applying for the position, was ranked #34 out of #37 applicants and doesnt even hold the certification level required for the job. However, one of the school board members used to work for him and he wrote a letter of reference for her in the past, so he was voted in as superintendent. After that, he was allowed to write his own contract for employment including setting his own salary. Now the school system has had to hire a tutor for him so he can study for the test he must take to obtain the certification required for his job.
    Oh, it is said that they may lose up to 10 administrators and 50 teachers due to the cheating scandal - second only to the Atlanta scandal in our state. It is said that it could take months and months to fire these people because many will be hiring attorneys to defend them and help them keep their jobs.
    This district is pretty disfunctional and nothing will change until the state or maybe even government get involved.
     
  12. Ambrosegirl84

    Ambrosegirl84 Companion

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    Nov 18, 2011

    Yeah, mmswm, I haven't had to deal with anything directly (we own our house, thank God, and my school is far enough out that I haven't had a new kid in 3 years), but I really feel for students having to try to succeed academically when they're living in a camper or school bus in -20 weather, and as a teacher I would feel so helpless. The NBC show certainly didn't help, as there are many more people flocking up here, not knowing that the weather will soon turn nasty-nasty.

    Teachforlife, I think I just got a little sick, to say it nicely. ;)
     
  13. donziejo

    donziejo Devotee

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    Nov 18, 2011

    I saw the special on NBC and my first thought was about the school situation. Very glad that you own a house. It's really sad what happens to a town when the oil boom goes bust . I hope your town takes that in to consideration. I think NBC said the field could supply thousands of jobs for 4 years.
     
  14. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Nov 18, 2011

    These are the things that bother me the most. I held my son back last year in K because I knew what was coming in first. It has helped him a great deal. He can handle the work. I love my job. I work in a small county in a very rural school.
    But the long arm of the state still micro manages our whole
    school and it is asinine.
     
  15. Teachforlife

    Teachforlife Rookie

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    Nov 18, 2011

    I have my own kids in private school and I just got a job with the post office. I havent been able to find a teaching job and subbing isnt for me.
     
  16. msufan

    msufan Comrade

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    Nov 19, 2011

    A thread like this is where you really see the haves and have-nots in eduction -- contrast all of what you guys wrote with my situation in an elementary school in a wealthy suburb:

    1. Our board of ed, admin, and community are decidedly anti-test-prep. My state raised their cut scores on our annual tests, so I did spend 3 class periods reviewing material before the standardized tests -- the first time I've ever done anything remotely test-prep-like ever. But all stakeholders in my district know that filling bubbles well is not what we aspire to for our students.

    2. Each one of my students has a computer available at all times.

    3. My students are wonderful -- they come to school happy, well taken care of, and eager to learn. My average student for the past decade (I track this) has begun the year at the 75th percentile nationally in reading and 68th percentile nationally in math and ends the year around the 80th percentile in both of those subjects.

    4. My students' families are well-educated and I am certainly treated with respect. My email inbox overflows with positive messages, not critical ones. I've never had a parent not attend conferences in the 12 years I've been at my school.

    5. I've never seen or heard of a fight in my school. I haven't had a child tattle on another child yet this year.

    Now THAT is what all schools should be like... and the reason they're not has nothing to do with better or worse teachers (I am nothing special) -- it has everything to do with poverty and the parents' own educational level.
     
  17. Mrs.DLC

    Mrs.DLC Comrade

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    Nov 19, 2011

    Well said, msu!! I haven't posted at the risk of being crititized, but your post strikes a chord. You are so humble-I am sure you're a great teacher! But, a few people on here who are fortunate to teach in more affluent districts(I have been there in the past.)act as if teachers who dare to complain or say things aren't as they could be are somehow at fault for the situation!! Teachers aren't perfect, but so many things are out of my control. I do what I can with the time I have with students. However, the playing field is not always level when trying to compare test scores, etc.
     
  18. Momzoid

    Momzoid Companion

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    Nov 19, 2011

    In my case the teachers are being bombarded with more paper work-RtI, intervention forms, testing etc without additional time given in the day to do these. Then there are the data meetings, PLCs etc during our alleged planning period. At some point I have to teach, grade papers, make lesson plans, change bulletin boards create centers, set goals- this list goes on and on. I come in early and stay late. I bring things home to do. Now the system is tracking how many absences teachers have and questioning them. Our teachers are coming to school sick because of the harassment. There is no other job that requires this much work OUTSIDE the set working day. I have decided that if they want this all this stuff done in a timely manner GIVE ME A SECRETARY! I came into this profession to teach and make a difference!:soapbox:
     
  19. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Nov 19, 2011

    We can only have a certain amount of sick days without doctor's notes. I don't think it is an unreasonable request. I can see if you had to have a doctor's note for every single sick day, but after awhile I can see why they would want some proof.
     
  20. GTB4GT

    GTB4GT Cohort

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    Nov 19, 2011

    Sounds like you are in a great position.Reading this board and thread makes me appreciate my situation as well. While the school is not without it's flaws and challenges, the administration and school district that I am in does a great job of filtering out the garbage and bureacratic nonsense. I have none of the demands/requirements that some of you apparently have. My administration has done nothing but support me and I am allowed to manage/teach my subject as I see fit. Do they want quality instruction? Yes and the teachers in our school, like the vast majority elsewhere work our behinds off to provide that to the students. Management's primary function in any organization should be to help the team get better, not to interfere or get in the way of the work to be done.
     
  21. pete2770

    pete2770 Comrade

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    Nov 19, 2011

    I'm glad MSU's experience has been so positive.

    I'm just amazed you haven't run into any parents that aren't involved in their child's education yet. Even among the upper-middle class, one would think there are going to be parents that work too much or think "it's the school's job to teach my kids."

    Still, I'm amazed at how humble you are, realizing that other people's situations are yours if you were under similar circumstance.
     
  22. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Nov 19, 2011

    I think the pressure put on teachers today is just crazy. Teachers are blamed for everything and have very little support in general. I know there are still some good districts and schools out there, but it seems that these complaints are becoming more common, at least when you look at posts on A to Z. I am thankful to not be in the US teaching anymore and can enjoy the profession. Honestly, I have no desire to even return to that chaos any time soon...
     
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