Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Not food or fitness related. Any seeking that content are advised to move along.
I am a trained certified experienced teacher. I have been unable to find a job for 2 years. During this time I have battled depression, anxiety and feelings of low self-worth.
I took my current position as a teacher's aide because it will allow me to stay in the education field, doing what I love, even if its not at the ideal location or the ideal job within that field. When I was offered the job much was said that "The school is growing. There might be a position down the road." No promises, but potential. At the start of this semester, I was asked to teach a single section of biology to some of the hardest cases in a new, special program. The rest of the time, I am a teacher's aide. Eagerly, I agreed. I am a team player. I want to teach. I am willing to start at the bottom.
Surprisingly, I have been making progress with some of these hard cases. Within the regular program, some students are seeking me out for all the regular reasons teens bond with adults in their lives. I enjoy a collegial relationship with my teacher colleagues, even if I am not "one of them." After all, we're all in this together. Things are going well. I feel buoyed....until today.
I will not be receiving teacher pay for this one section. My choices are thus:
1) Continue to do the job. Be a team player or sucker depending on your point of view. Its for the good of the kids.
2) Refuse to do the job. Be an @$$wipe/ non-team player and possibly not have job in the future. Damage the kids.
Husband says #2. Science colleague says #2. Logic brain says #2. I dont want to establish precedent that they (central administration - building principal planned to pay me and was surprised when they said no) can do this. My heart knows this is the WRONG decision for the kids. I feel sick and want to cry.
What's going to happen? The science teacher in the building will be asked to design lessons for someone else to deliver. They wont be able to do it as well as I can
1) I know the content
2) I have built the relationship with these students.
FYI - these are not "normal" kids. This is a special school for the emotionally disturbed. My fellow teachers, you know these kids, these are the ones that make you crazy in the classroom. The ones that cant stop talking, the ones that always had something happen during lunch, the ones that cant make it to school on a regular basis. Here they are!
So my challenge in the next 24 hours is to find a way to nicely tell my principal that I will not be working for free, but its not by choice.