The end of the school year is usually a time of concluding lessons, wrapping up projects, packing up classrooms, and looking forward to a bit of recovery time (however brief it might be). Most of all, it brings a huge sigh of relief – the school year has been conquered! But for many teachers this [...]
--an installment in the ongoing series The Unemployed Teacher-- I enjoyed a two hour coffee get together with one of my former students the other day. I was so energized after that meeting – and as I reflected on how proud I was of the path my student had followed after graduating from high school, [...]
I spent most of the first year after my layoff just wanting to go back. Back to the job I had so passionately loved. Back to the routine that was so familiar. Back to the students with whom I felt so at home with. Back to the career that had been moving along at a sedate but solid pace. I just wanted to go back. I found a temporary position that first year, which assuaged my longing for the classroom. It was a challenging position for me, and I grew from it. But it was temporary and ended with the school year. At the start of the second school year as an unemployed teacher, my perspective began to change. As previously mentioned, I took several substituting jobs in the first few months of this school year. The jobs were at my old school – the place where I’d felt so at home for the better part of a decade. But the subbing was disheartening. In a building where I had invested so much of my time, energy and passion, I got double takes and confused looks from people who thought they recognized me but didn’t quite remember from where. Others who I’d worked more closely with said hello but there was none of the old camaraderie. The difficulty of being back in the halls that no longer welcomed me was an important step for me: I needed to get past the point of wanting to go back so that I could finally go forward. […]
Education is Changing, and We Must be Ready. An Unemployed Teacher Offers a Place to Start for the New Year.
To buy Cari’s book that details her sudden unemployment, “How to Finish the Test When Your Pencil Breaks” please click here. As a teacher who has been out of work for almost two years now, I find the holidays bring an interesting sense of out-of-sync timing. I can clearly remember the visceral relief at the arrival of winter break – it’s so well deserved by the time it rolls around! All of my teacher friends are now finally able to prepare for (and enjoy) the holidays and don’t have to go into the classroom for a few weeks. For me, I’m away from a brick and mortar classroom all the time, so on the one hand, I’ve had a more relaxed time to prepare for the holidays, but on the other hand – I don’t have a classroom. It’s bittersweet for sure. Last year, I was still deeply feeling the loss of my position and so I felt a bit more down. This year, I am starting to match the reality of the teaching job market (not that there is much of one) to the possibility I may need to be more creative in finding ways to continue following my passion as an educator. I’m going to use this holiday to opening new pathways for myself. […]