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Leaving in the middle of the year
Old 09-02-2013, 10:42 AM
 
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Has anyone ever broken their teaching contract and left in the middle of the school year? It's only the beginning of Sept and have been thinking about doing this since the summer. I was at my current school last year and know that I should feel blessed and happy to have a job when many don't. Yet, I'm miserable. I don't like the school, the kids are rough and administration has made it a nightmare- there are many details I could go into but I won't. I didn't want to come back this year but I did because I was afraid to tell my current P I wasn't coming back. So now I'm stuck. I'm sick to my stomach most mornings at the thought of going in, I cry almost daily at school and I know I'm not giving my all to my students because I honestly hate being there. Has anyone left in the middle of the year and found something else? I'm looking now but afraid to apply to anything in town. Can I legally break my contract? I've never thought of doing something like this before but I'm now at the end of my rope.


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Tread lightly
Old 09-02-2013, 04:44 PM
 
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In most cases I know, breaking a contract is very bad to do. They can and will keep your license. You will not get good recommendations. I would call HR (anonymously) and ask what the penalties are. Truthfully, I think you should stick it out and resign in June. Other schools will have a different set of problems. The grass is not always greener...
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:44 PM
 
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That's what I'm afraid of, something happening to my license. Im not even sure I want to teach anymore but dont want the option taken away. Though, I haven't signed a contract yet. Last year I didn't get it until almost November even though I was hired in July. I know the grass isn't always greener but its dead on my side. I'm at the school that when people hear where I work I get "oh..." with the sad head tilt and pat on the shoulder. Guess the debate will rage on in my head...
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Old 09-03-2013, 07:35 AM
 
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Definitely don't leave during the year unless it is an "emergency situation" for yourself or someone else. But if you do have to leave, plan it during winter or spring break so it gives time for the school to prepare another teacher.

Still, it's possible to leave your job mid-year and get hired (but in another district). My friend left his job on bad terms in March (basically after an argument with the principal), and he was hired in August for a teaching job in another district. This is probably an exception to the rule, but his new principal was still willing to look at his resume, and the new principal still hired him even after talking to the prior principal.

Also, I know nothing about losing licensure if you resign (unless you have a temporary licensee). I always thought you had licensure, with or without employment, unless you did something illegal.
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Old 09-03-2013, 11:26 AM
 
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Stick it out and search over the summer.


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sabatical.. unpaid leave?
Old 09-03-2013, 03:04 PM
 
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I know you said you want to quit.. but is there a way to take some upaid leave? I heard people needing to take time off for mental health (stress). Maybe thats a possibility.
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Old 09-03-2013, 06:51 PM
 
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I would stick it out, unless you are going directly into a new position. things like these have a way of haunting you. You made it through last year, you can make it through this year. If you were afraid to tell your P during the summer that you wanted to quit, how difficult will it be to tell him as the school year is starting? You may be putting the P in quite a lurch. Just some things to consider.
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Old 09-03-2013, 08:52 PM
 
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You sound exactly like I did! I actually resigned just a week before school started--I left it at health related circumstances. My district was so supportive and understanding. They did not threaten to do anything to me and said I would be welcome back in the future. Your health and happiness is most important. Listen to what your body is telling you to do. I got out and I know I made the right choice for now.
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:37 AM
 
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Keep your license? I have never heard of such a thing. Your license is issued by the state, not a school district. Do they physically have your actual certificate? My district only receives a copy. Besides, all I have to do is go to the state's DOE website and print a new copy, if needed. Your license can be lost for breaking the law. Breaking a contract is cruddy, but not illegal!

In a right to work state you can quit at any time. However, your contract should outline any consequences for breaking it. For example, my husband has a contract and must keep it for 2 years. If he breaks it there are financial repercussions. He has to pay back things like moving expenses and the money they put forth towards closing.

Sadly, in teaching there is blackballing. It's real. On an application I have even had to sign a paper stating that I have never broken a contract mid-year. I would try to stick it out if at all possible. You could probably get a mental health specialist to recommend a leave.

Good luck in whatever you decide.
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Wondering
Old 09-04-2013, 07:02 AM
 
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Quote:
Keep your license? I have never heard of such a thing. Your license is issued by the state, not a school district. Do they physically have your actual certificate? My district only receives a copy. Besides, all I have to do is go to the state's DOE website and print a new copy, if needed. Your license can be lost for breaking the law. Breaking a contract is cruddy, but not illegal!
In my state the district CAN apply to the state to have your license revoked for violating a contract. The district doesn't always do that but they CAN! That's what keeps teachers from hopping from job to job to job during the school year. My district plays hard ball when it comes to leaving your job for non emergency situations. The state doesn't have to have physical custody of the license document to cancel it. I guess it's kind of like when a drivers license is revoked due to excessive violations. I imagine that this varies from state to state so it's best to negotiate in regards to your license before you leave. Check with your state department of Ed., talk to HR or your union rep before you do anything.

Many teachers have been in your current situation. I hope you find the path to a life that makes you happy. You deserve that!



I hope


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Old 09-04-2013, 11:02 AM
 
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Yes, you can have your license revoked in certain states for this. You just have to follow the guidelines of your state.
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Old 09-04-2013, 04:55 PM
 
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I know the state can revoke your license, but a school cannot without petitioning the state. And the state will revoke for things like committing a felony.
I just couldn't believe they could do it for breach of contract-so Google and I got busy.
Some can!!!! But not all.
I found a Mississippi law where it is an option if you abandon your contract.
For the most part I found that financial penalties are usually your "punishment". It seemed like that is especially true in right to work states.
You should absolutely check before walking away!
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Old 09-04-2013, 05:01 PM
 
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I know the state can revoke your license, but a school cannot without petitioning the state. And the state will revoke for things like committing a felony.
I just couldn't believe they could do it for breach of contract-so Google and I got busy.
Some can!!!! But not all.
I found a Mississippi law where it is an option if you abandon your contract.
For the most part I found that financial penalties are usually your "punishment". It seemed like that is especially true in right to work states.
You should absolutely check before walking away!
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Old 09-04-2013, 06:37 PM
 
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You CAN have sanctions on your teaching license, typically suspensions, if you breach a contract in not giving enough notice in public school districts. In Oregon, for example, teachers must give at LEAST 60 days notice before resigning.

It's a major, major sin in public ed to do this.

A "right to work" state is irrelevant. "Right-to-work" is NOT "at-will" (it just bans closed union shops), and neither applies. You are under contract with a school district. You cannot breach it without penalty if you do not give enough notice.

Risking license sanctions ain't worth it, for that follows you around everywhere in the United States.
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Old 09-04-2013, 09:40 PM
 
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If you leave in the middle of the year then your HR dept will probably do no more than tell you not to let the door hit you on the butt on the way out. But...dont plan on ever going back to teaching because leaving in the middle of the yer is a huge black ball. My wise husband is in private business and his motto is that its always easier to get a job when you have a job. Being poor is way worse than your current teaching job so tough it out until the end of the year. At least then you might have ever so slight chance of returning to teaching in the future if needed.
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Old 09-05-2013, 04:09 AM
 
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My sister in law left a few years back in November. She wasn't happy with the principal, parents, etc. She subbed rest of year and got a contract that September. It's all who you know.

I would try to at least make it to Thanksgiving or Christmas break and then give them time to find a replacement. It's not worth your health. I'm sure they won't have trouble replacing you in such an oversaturated teaching market. Good Luck.
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:30 AM
 
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I've always heard that teachers that leave in the middle of year risk losing their certification. If you're trying to stay in the education field it may not be the best thing to do. I know some districts like mine, will put in on your reference/records that you broke contract and you're not eligible for rehire due to sanction. This could cause other districts not wanting to hire you.
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Old 09-08-2013, 12:09 PM
 
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I'm going on the opposite side of this. I was in a position and miserable; abused by my prinicpal, sick everytime I came in, etc. She told me in Oct I wasn't going to be invited back and I stuck it out. I had to go on meds to make it through the year and I was never more miserable in my life. Words can't describe how awful the situation was; the principal was abusive and the environment was hostile. It went beyond a normal bad job.

In hindsight I would have sucked it up through December and resigned effective after winter break. I had a principal friend in another district. I would have subbed there for the remainder of the year.

I'm somewhat appalled at the number of people telling you to tell you to stay in a miserable job. If it's that bad quit (but do your reasearch first. Make sure there are no implications to your license since every state is different).

Do what's best for you.
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Old 09-08-2013, 03:23 PM
 
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Thank you Greyhoundgirl, I was starting to feel like an awful person for wanting to leave. I've already been put on anxiety Meds cause of the situation and may have to up them just to make it through the year. I don't want to have to dope myself up on pills everyday just to go to work. What good am I to the kids when I'm so unhappy. I'm going to check with my union about leaving during the year. Thank you for the encouragement.
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Old 09-08-2013, 06:43 PM
 
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Your doctor might be able to write you a note for indefinite leave. With HIPPA laws the district does not need to know why you are out.
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just my opinion
Old 09-11-2013, 04:16 AM
 
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Your sanity and mental health is far more important than a job.
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Don't do it!
Old 09-22-2013, 08:25 AM
 
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I did this for emergency reasons and it was still a terrible mistake. They did not take my license, but it has been years and i have been unable to land a new job. Completely blacklisted. I have acquired a sub job this year and certification in an adjacent state and I working my butt off to get back into the field. If I had to do it all over again I would never put myself in that situation. If you have to use every personal/sick day and attend every workshop to get some sanity, do it. But do not leave middle of the year.
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Health trumps money!
Old 09-22-2013, 05:09 PM
 
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I agree with GreyHound Girl. I'm in the same situation with abusive administration, an inability to connect with kids, etc. That's what's so great about this site. It lets us know we're not alone!

Also, please remember that there are other career options available outside of teaching. I should be taking my own advice; I have a stomachache just thinking about school tomorrow.

Hugs to you for the best decision possible. Remember that NOTHING is worth your health and well-being.
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I did it last year
Old 09-30-2013, 05:47 AM
 
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I left last March. My district was incredibly understanding. There were no penalties, financial or otherwise. I cited health as my reason for leaving. I am now working at a non-profit organization and am happier than I have been in years. If you want to discuss this further, feel free to contact me.
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Remember you are important too
Old 09-30-2013, 02:34 PM
 
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You are important. In order for you to help your students, you must first help yourself. I think your situation is beyond a bad day here or there. Talk to your doctor if need be and see what you can do to improve your situation. Improvement comes in all forms.. remember that. Do what is good for you. One thing I know, if you are not in that room, they will find someone to replace with no hesitation. take care of yourself.
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health way more important
Old 09-24-2014, 06:48 PM
 
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I have been in TERRIBLE classrooms. I stuck it out, but I was MISERable. It is not a good situation for anyone. Bottom line is that money runs the schools and each kid has a little price tag on their heads. about 5 grand or more.
I have been assaulted, insulted, spit on, and threatened for trying to enforce the rules. The only reason I stayed was to feed my family.
I regret getting into teaching, but the road is getting smoother now. I can face problem kids now with all the confidence I need to get through it and make a difference.
My faith in God is what gets me through, to be totally honest.
I would say to stick it out, I am glad I did now. I finally found a great teaching job, well worth years of pain. I know it may sound funny, but i think it made me a better person
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