lit lover book

reflections of an ever-evolving educator

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

moving on up

Just a note to say I'm relocating my blogging about education. My new Wordpress blog may be found at A new blog to go with my new school and my new job (and to think some women would just buy a suit). Hope to see you there!

Thursday, August 11, 2005

positive reinforcement

As I've noted in the last few posts, I'm no longer in the classroom. My new position puts me in front of other teachers for the most part and there's one actually positive aspect about it that has been really bugging me these last few days (leave it to me to put a bad spin on something good):

I have actually had a great couple of weeks in this new job. Teachers have been overwhelmingly warm, friendly, complimentary and supportive. In fact, I can, without exaggeration, say that I have received more "atta-girl"s and "great job"s in the past two weeks than I have in the last five years.

But why?

Don't get me wrong--my new position is demanding, complex and multi-faceted. While I am still teaching (albeit adults), I'm also juggling many other disparate responsibilities. But none of it is any more difficult or demanding than what I did in the classroom for 18 years.

I know that part of the difference is that teachers are more vocal than kids, much more likely to speak up and let another adult know their work is appreciated. But why can't we, as teachers, do that for each other? Why can't our administrative teams and our parents provide that much needed acknowledgment that what we are doing with these kids is valuable and valued?

Perhaps, if I had received the level of support in my teaching that I have in this position so far, I would never have left.

So to all of you classroom teachers out there, I want to say, "Thank you. You're doing a great job. i don't know what we'd do without you."

It's not enough, I know, but at least it's something.


I'm beginning to get that anxious, overwhelmed feeling already and I've only been officially working in my new capacity for 8 days. Here's my to-do list for tomorrow:

  • Meet with the guidance counselor to explain that the Teacher Led Collaboration process is just that--Teacher Led, regardless of what some parents might prefer
  • Schedule conferences with previously mentioned parents
  • Somehow schedule, staff, and publicize after school tutoring sessions for students who failed the Graduation Test (their retest is Sept. 2)
  • Figure out what staff development sessions I will be offering for the entire school year and write up the plan and approval request for PLUs
  • Complete the mentor-mentee paperwork and get it sent to the county office
  • Create and distribute info sheets for/to all my new teachers
Don't get me wrong--I really like this job. It's a welcome change after 18 years in the classroom. But I do miss my kids--not to mention that feeling that I actually know what I'm doing. (Did you know that in the time it took you to read this post, 4 new acronyms were added to educationese in my district?)