Thursday, April 23, 2009

Gripe

Two quick gripes that I'll try not to dwell on:

First, a parent called my principal today to complain about me. The frustrating part of this is that all of the complaints were about things that happened months ago and that she had already talked to me about and that I had made changes or explained why I was doing what I was doing. And the mom blatantly lies to me and to others... Frustrating. My principal asked me to come tell my side of the story so we could document it in case the parent tries to take it any farther, and she totally backed me up which was the positive part of the experience.

Second, the legislature removed funding for teacher professional development days for this coming school year. Generally, we get 6 days per year to have training and to work in our classroom (4 days of training, 2 days in our classroom to set up before school starts) and because these are in addition to our contract, we are paid to attend. Because the economy is poor, because the budget is tight, these days were cut. So, we have one day that is part of our contract to set up our classrooms...and actually half of that day will be used for a faculty meeting...so actually 3 hours. Of course, that is not possible, so we will all still work most or all of the week before school starts (and probably off and on throughout the summer, especially because we have just adopted a new reading program and will get a boatload of materials to unpack and organize and learn how to use). But we will work for free...because we are dedicated professionals. Now, I'm sure that some people are thinking that teachers get paid plenty and that we're always complaining. I don't think most people realize how much time and effort most of us put in. And I do realize that I am lucky to have a good job. And I do get a decent salary. Definitely things could be worse. But it is still frustrating. We will work 30 or more hours before the school year starts and not be paid a penny. We will then have to do any training after school or during breaks.

Okay, enough griping. I have had a great school year other than a couple of bad days. I'm disappointed about the professional development days. I am frustrated by this parent. But I have a great school, a great principal and have had one of the nicest classes I've ever taught. I have been very blessed to have a job that I consider valuable and important and that I mostly love doing. It's hard to juggle it all at times, but I know that I'm blessed.