Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Right back what is wrong
We move along
All American Rejects

Today a teacher at my school quit. Not just any teacher. A fellow 4th grade teacher who was getting her masters in special ed. A first year teacher I would have dinner with on Friday nights of weeks we had both had a little too much of our students and our school. A teacher who's room I ate lunch in because my students are now self-contained during both lunch and recess. She was not only my colleague, but my friend and confidant. Yesterday at lunch she told me she was quitting. I didn't believe her. She'd said it many times before.
Today she didn't come back. Her room was empty. She was gone.
There were no goodbyes, not to me or her students or administrators.
She was just gone.
Over the phone we talked. I was shocked, then sad, then angry, then numb...then I went back to my kids.
MY KIDS. Who have learned to read and subtract with regrouping and multiply and can tell you all about why static electricity happens.
MY KIDS. Who made me want to quit almost every day for the first month but who I can not imagine walking out on now.
MY KIDS. Who work their butts off for me.
MY KIDS. Who other teachers hate and can't control and don't appreciate.
This system is broken. Things don't happen the way they should. Kids and classes and teachers and entire schools fall through the cracks but at the end of the day some of us are standing up and taking responsibility. These are MY KIDS. This is not my system or my curriculum or my school but they are MY KIDS and I will NOT abandon them.
It's time for people to stand up and fight for them because they haven't been given the skills they need to fight for themselves.
I am so incredibly angry and all I can do about it is get up tomorrow and be the best teacher MY KIDS have ever had.

2 comments:

Miss Browneyedgirlie said...

While I've yet to be in your shoes, I know what it's like to form a bond with your kids - to feel like their future is dependent on you and your performance - and I have to say that I could never, EVER walk out on mine, either.

Kudos to you on a job well done. And I'm sorry to hear about your friend; I hope she realizes the error of her ways and returns.

Lsquared said...

Way to go--

The kids that are difficult are the ones that need you most: they often get bounced from teacher to teacher, and it is so valuable for them to have someone who will appreciate them and stay with them. I know your consistency is important to them.