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nalaandathena nalaandathena is offline
Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 2
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Joined: Feb 2020
Posts: 2
New Member
meetings after hours
Old 02-12-2020, 02:42 PM
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Hi everyone and thanks in advance for the advice / perspective.

I have been teaching for about 7 years- 5 of which as a certified teacher. Recently I have moved to a new state and taken a pay cut. In addition, the school year has 10 more days than my previous state.

With a master in education my take home pay is 30k a year which is causing severe dissatisfaction with my career choice. Even before moving to a new state, I made the commitment to quit working outside of work hours as my time was not being respected. This seems to be causing problems for me in my career.

Today, I picked a battle that I'm not sure I should have... I have a strong opinion. This is where any perspective would be helpful.

In August, I began working at a school where we were not guaranteed lunch breaks each day-- had to eat with the students. We also had daily "planning" meetings, and perscribed curriculum including slide by slide powerpoints and were asked to sit the students on the carpet in a specific order. I was overwhelmed by not having a conference period and quit that job in December. At that time, I was hired by a charter school in the area. Overall, I enjoy this school more and have a lunch break and conference on most days - aside from regular planning meetings. Since I have been here in December, the principal, assistant principal, one other teacher on our team, and many other in the school have resigned. The charter state team has taken over. When I came into the classroom it was a disaster, literally, with trash thrown all about. It actually worked out better for me because I had more autonomy and flexibility. That being said, there is a general feeling of chaos and disorganization throughout the building-- they might lose the charter next year.

I was recently told I would need to participate in the beginning teacher support program which consists of extra work, goal setting, basically a professional development plan. My issue is that these meetings take place until 5 pm one day out of the month. Again, I know this isn't the right battle to pick but I am so over being asked to work for free after hours. I informed the "beginning teacher support group" leader that I would not be attending and gave her my reasoning and of course she was very upset. I told her that I would be happy to participate in the other elements of the program during the school day but that I am currently working three jobs and cannot afford to give up my time for free-- I could either be working or spending time with my new husband (married last month). Of course this did not go over well, but I am wondering if I am not alone. I am 5 years in as a certified teacher, have high evaluation scores, have many certifications including a school administrator and evaluation certification, and I am not happy with this new state requiring me to jump through hoops to prove my worth (I found out that to keep my certification I would have to retest in the 5 areas I am certified and pay for each one).

The situation is one of those "last straw" moments... I'm just done. Where do you personally draw the line on no more working for free? I'm tired of hearing "it's just one meeting, it's just one hour". No, it is my time that I am not paid for and I do not want to volunteer to be a part of a meeting. Especially not when I was given notice on a Monday and expected to be there Wednesday.

I am obviously bitter and burnt out about the whole situation but am hoping for some perspective or advice. I am considering taking a break from teaching because of this type of stuff.

Thank you again for any perspective or advice.

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