Update on the unacceptable school...

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2000
Update on the unacceptable school...
6
Mon, 08-15-2005 - 11:20pm

Got to school this AM for a 6:45 AM faculty meeting to find my principal in tears. I've seen her get choked up a few times, but never quite like this. My first thought was that the principal had decided to transfer her 4 days before school started.

But no - she was just MAD. She'd found out Friday afternoon, that we are getting 75 (or more) kids transferring from the unacceptable school. Now we need more faculty (3 of which are coming from the unacceptable school), teachers have to change rooms, an additional 6th grade team has to be added. Did I mention that school starts in 4 days?

So far, none of the 100+ special education students at the "other" school have elected to transfer. It seems like most of the kids we are getting - based on stanines - would be the ones that will help our scores.

So that's where we're at.

Karen

 


PJPIIadoration.jpg picture by Kimberly_sahm

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-04-2003
Tue, 08-16-2005 - 12:30pm

Even if they are the best students on the planet, it sucks to have to make all those EXTREME last minute changes. I can understand why she was so upset. I would be too. YUCK!!

You see, this is why I laughed at one my newer colleagues who said that "things must be done in an orderly manner or she won't be happy. " Education is never about order or common sense. It's about living with chaos. I am so sorry Karen. We all feel your pain.

GT34

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2000
Tue, 08-16-2005 - 1:02pm

You are SO right - it's about living with chaos - and dealing. That silly lady. She's probably going to be unhappy - A LOT! Some of my colleagues (who have always been very nice and helpful to me) have a newfound respect for my job and a greater appreciation of their own students after teaching a class full of special ed students this summer for remediation.

When Johnny comes to school and his dad died the night before - you don't have order. You have craziness.

When the other teachers change the schedule at the last second and don't tell you (special ed never gets thought about) you deal. I was SO mad last year when they did that (I didn't deal well in that instance) I slapped in a movie and caught up on my paperwork the rest of the day.

We have 78 "new" students registered so far from this school. About 5 are special ed, but we don't know which ones yet. No way to know until their records come. The entire master schedule has been scrapped and school starts Friday. It's Tuesday.

We had roughly 500 students before this exodus started. I wonder how high they'll let it go....

SHould be interesting.

Thanks for the moral support.

Karen

Edited to add: Principal was called to the school board office this morning. Our assistant principal told us that she nearly lost her job Friday she was so upset with the whole affair. We've got an update meeting this afternoon. The saga continues...




Edited 8/16/2005 1:11 pm ET ET by 2sweetlilcritters

 


PJPIIadoration.jpg picture by Kimberly_sahm

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-04-2003
Tue, 08-16-2005 - 7:00pm

I would say to "hang in there" but you are already doing that. "Hanging" by the smallest thread ever imagined...

It's not that I don't want teachers to have hopes and ideals. But I have learned to let go of expectations with this career. You can hope, pray, plead, but if you EXPECT something, wow will your feelings be hurt...

Also, if you didn't start out teaching and you come from another field, you will almost always have a misguided perception of what will happen...

Finally, things have got to change. The education system will continue to be plagued with problems if someone or something doesn't change soon...

Sorry for rough start. Hey, it's my firm believe that teachers go to heaven by default. I mean we choose to work in hell, god will reward us in the end. *lmao*

GT34 who is aware that not all teachers live this existence.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2000
Tue, 08-16-2005 - 8:50pm

Today wasn't too bad. No tears. Our poor guidance counselor is going crazy trying to enroll all these kids before Friday. A few SPED kids have found their way over, but that's not a bad thing, our numbers are so low that we may lose a SPED teacher and no one wants that to happen.

I'm pretty good at hanging in and going with the flow. We are having a "comprehensive curriculum" thrown at us 3 days before school starts. That's not so bad if you just teach 1 grade, 1 subject, but some of us aren't that lucky. I asked one of my colleagues who has kids similar to mine what she was going to do for math. She says, "I'm going to start with multiplication and subtraction. Then I'm going to do fractions because most of them have no clue, then I'm going to water down the curriculum and teach what I can. I'm going with 8th grade because they're the ones who have to pass the LEAP." And I thought - GMTA! We're just going to get in there and do our best. No one (and we've asked many people) can answer the burning question - "How are we supposed to teach TWO comprehensive curriculums in a multi-grade level class???"

Already, though, I find myself mentally exhausted. And the kids haven't come yet.

I'm not holding my breath for the system to change. I've been in nearly 20 years, and the more things change, the more they stay the same. We're going to do this comprehensive curriculum for 4 or 5 years, then they'll throw it in the scrap pile and come up with something else that will be the be-all, end-all.

Love it - teachers go to heaven by default! I'll keep that in mind for the tough days.

Karen

 


PJPIIadoration.jpg picture by Kimberly_sahm

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-24-2003
Wed, 08-17-2005 - 1:39pm

Hey gals,


I've been on vacation for 10 days and mostly out of site, but I'm trying to catch up and read your conversation. My first thought was, what do the parents of these transferring students expect? If they really cared and were informed, they would know that a transfer won't solve the problems. Surely they looked at your scores before making the choice. If they just took the next closest school, what do they really want, a better school or the appearance of concern?

Sherry

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-26-2000
Wed, 08-17-2005 - 10:51pm

Hey Sherry,

I don't know what the parents expect. Some of the kids that we are getting were in our zone as 5th graders and then in the unacceptable school's zone for 6-8 (they don't have a 5th grade, and we do). So for them, they are "coming home". But already parents have called about registering and complaining about having to go "way over there". So why not keep your child close to home? Can't have it both ways, people.

The school they are leaving is a nice, new facility - about 5 or 6 years old. Ours is about 40 years old. We were saying yesterday, they ought to just put us at the new school and let them have ours.

We have gotten no extra teachers, no extra desks, no extra classrooms, no extra custodians (to move teachers), no extra books. Things that were promised and then un-promised. Our principal tells us that we really don't have the numbers to justify the extra stuff, but our population historically grows by about 100 kids in the first couple of weeks every year.

Totally agree with your comments about special ed. When all of this stuff gets throuwn at us - them needing to pass the same tests and complete the same curriculum, I just say - "they're 'special' for a reason, people!" We met with our special ed supervisor today, and she told us "you didn't hear it from me - but take what you've got and do the best you can with what you've got; if anyone comes in and tells you you're not doing it right, tell them you're open for suggestions and that you'd love to watch them do better" What we always do anyways.

The language arts comprehensive curriculum seems well done, as far as I can see right now. The math curriculum stinks. There are problems that can't be solved that we're supposed to have the kids work. Wrong answers all over. The alternative teacher and I are going to do our own - loosely following the GLE's.

Friday should be interesting. Monday, too. Next Friday, after school, our administration is giving us a "throw-down" off campus. A little music, some food, and probably a few adult beverages. We'll have a good time.

The saga continues....

Karen

 


PJPIIadoration.jpg picture by Kimberly_sahm