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awkward
Old 05-25-2013, 09:33 AM
 
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background: I interviewed for my current position last August. I was initially called and told that I was not hired and that they had hired a woman who had been their student teacher the previous year. I wasn't too bummed, the school is nearly an hour drive from me. Then, they call me back and say that unfortunately, the woman didn't have the proper endorsement for math and would like to hire me. So, I said ok as I had not been having any luck even getting any other interviews. Principal kept emphasizing that he didn't want me to feel like a "second choice."

Well... I was, right??? lol.

Anyway, as the year progressed I realized that not only did my principal and I differ on some very basic philosophical points, he was also weird and did things that I (and everyone I've talked to about it) thought were really *not cool.* One was to audiotape me giving a lesson... without notifying me that he was doing so. Another was to fully admit to me that he had tried to spy on my classroom when another teacher and I were trying out some team-teaching. The only thing that stopped him was that there was a class in the computer room that he was going to use to do his spying. Lots of other small things, too.

I had kind of decided that I wasn't going to apply for the job again (it was a one year leave replacement, but it's only classified as that for staffing and budgeting reasons) and I went ahead and made the effort to get my HS certification through Washington's Pathway II program. Having both MS and HS certification would open up more opportunities for me.

Anyway, the other math teachers treated me great and treated me like I would be a co-worker forever. We talked about things that we would do differently next year, how to manage various things that were long term, etc. They suggested things I could get for my classroom, you know that kind of stuff.

Principal and I didn't get along GREAT... I think that not having been in the workforce for so many years, I had forgotten how to ... well... not really kiss up, but massage the egos of my "betters." And, I had a really difficult class and a student asked to be moved to a different class and it turns out that her parents are great friends of the principal. The student didn't have anything bad to say about me, but it reflected poorly on me because I was having difficulty with this class which made the class unpleasant for her. So, I don't think that principal was my biggest fan.

Then, talking to the counselor she mentioned that he doesn't like to not "get his way." For instance, he had to let his handpicked counselor go because of staffing changes and he ended up having to hire the current counselor from a different school. He would tell her all the time how he had to fire "his" counselor and he treated her really poorly. My close mentor math teacher has a style very similar to mine with regard to how she engages with students.... he doesn't like it. He thinks it's not "nurturing" and has been on her a$$ about it for years. She finally went to district and said she'd quit if he didn't get out of her business. I'm a lot like her in that I have kind of a "buck up" attitude. I think that we do kids a disservice by babying them. Principal does not agree and also told me that I'm not nurturing. Made all these weird claims about me not wanting students to get "near me" and gave an example of me standing on the other side of a table from students one day. What? I'm always kneeling down by them and talking to them and patting them on the back. He challenged me to think of any students who would feel comfortable enough with me to come to me with a problem. I was sitting there thinking of the student who had come to me that morning to talk about kids bullying him and pushing him around in the hall as well as the student who had sat at my desk and cried about her mom being terminally ill the afternoon before. I didn't mention them because I recognized that he was totally full of poop. Then, he wrote me this BEAUTIFUL recommendation letter. But specifically stated multiple times what a great HIGH SCHOOL teacher I would make. (Because I'm not nurturing enough for the middle schoolers, which is what he told me).

Anyway, short story long... I wasn't his first choice and he doesn't like my style. That's ok, I was going to quit anyway, hahahahaa.

So, come to find out (through and informed source) that he had NEVER intended to keep me on more than a year. That he told the teacher he had originally hired to get her math endorsement and that I was just a "placeholder" for the year. He didn't tell any of the other math teachers this... they all treated me like I was there and there to stay. So, he was once again being underhanded and sneaky and thinking it was all ok.

So Friday, I meet my replacement. Yup, she's the woman they initially hired. She was very nice and I didn't hold it against her how this all played out. Showed her around my room, she asked if I would leave my anchor charts, I showed her how I had reorganized a VERY messy room (during organization I found files with referrals from 2007).

It was awkward.

yeah, long rambling post but wanted to get it all out......


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good recommend
Old 05-25-2013, 10:35 AM
 
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It sounds like you have great intuition. I'm glad you got a good recommend out of the deal.
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things work out for the best
Old 05-25-2013, 10:53 AM
 
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I'm proud of you for taking the high road, and better things are coming your way. It sounds like it was a good year in that you got a year of experience, probably learned a lot from/with your colleagues, and are leaving with a glowing recommendation. I wouldn't want to work for someone who is so dishonest, so I wish you the best of luck with your next administrator. There are some wonderful principals out there who will support you, and who have integrity. I know, I work for one of the best. You'll be fine.
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Old 05-25-2013, 01:20 PM
 
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A principal makes a huge difference to the job. Hopefully you find a placement with a more like minded principal.
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