Monday, December 08, 2008

In Which I Feel Vindicated. Sad, But Vindicated.

So here's the thing. Last may in my position at RRPS, they sent around a proposal for some of their ideas for the coming year. I read through it, which I actually rarely do (I just sort of sail through life and do things impulsively, without giving much thought, except for work.)

Something didn't seem quite right. I couldn't quite put my finger on it, but their problems-suggestions-expected outcomes didn't seem quite right. I spoke with the head of the union about it, who agreed with me, and then she mentioned that she was moving to a different school and asked if I wanted to be the union rep.

"No," I replied. "I'm not coming back next year."

Since that time, especially with not receiving much of an income during September and October while my work situation shook out, I'm gnawed at the skin on the side of my thumb as I worried that I had brought us to financial ruin by doing this. Even though Baboo makes a good living, I have years of struggling before I met him that gave me a permanant anxiety about such things.

Then, in October, when I started my new job, I sent emails to some of my old teacher friends giving them my new email address. They responded with congratulations, "howareyou"s and then proceded to tell me how awful things are. How many teachers had already quit, and then there was a hiring freeze, leaving the remaining teachers over their legal limit on classroom size. In addition to that, I already knew that they had reworked the schedule so that I would be teaching nearly twice as many students the same curriculum in half as much time.

Then, today, Baboo heard about this:

This is one of those times that I'm not happy to have been right. But I'm relieved that I apparently saw the writing on the wall and got out in time. This, in my opinion, is at least one of the end-products of NCLB.



  1. Damn...yup, always wanting us to do more with less.
    Good choice you made!

    I think public education is at it's end unless there's a HUGE re-vamping of things soon!

  2. Wow. Vindication is nice, but that is truly a sad thing.

    I had a similar situation at a place of employment several jobs ago...was generally miserable and could've sucked it up, but also saw that management was supporting and rewarding those who made their financial goals for the year even if they treated their colleagues and their support staff like crap.

    Long story short, I quit almost two years ago with no other prospects because I just couldn't take it, and financial anxiety was the lesser of two evils. They've since gone through two, maybe three rounds of layoffs, and half of the staff has quit because of more demeaning behavior by management. It was a struggle, but I am much happier now, and like you, feel vindicated for having avoided disaster!

  3. On the surface, that just sounds insane! I would love to know more about the rationale (or lack of one) behind this decision.

    And to be honest, given what coverage under COBRA typically costs, good luck to them in finding volunteers. It sure doesn't inspire much confidence in the promise of a "guaranteed" return to employment.

  4. Wow. Glad you got out ahead of this!

  5. Wow- I am in shock. This is our school system? That just is unbelievable and you got out just in time. Still shaking my head....
    Glad you are in your new jog for sure..

  6. There are so many riches that have come of you being brave and leaving school for a new career - the job you have now, not having to deal with the ugly mess of the school district, new house in a place you love. Vindicated? - maybe. Rewarded? - for sure.

  7. Re: dogs, photo 9.

  8. I am so bitter about NCLB that I won't even poison your blog with it.

    Good for you for getting out of there, but it sure is a shame for your students and former colleagues. It sounds like there was MASSIVELY poor management on your former district's part as well as the hand-tying of NCLB that lead to that disaster.


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