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Is there hope there's a functional school out there?

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EatPrayLove EatPrayLove is offline
 
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Is there hope there's a functional school out there?
Old 02-26-2019, 08:58 AM
 
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Hi everyone,

I took a leave of absence for 3 months for medical reasons. I found I am so in love with teaching that I was REALLY excited and ready to go back. My happiness lasted until a few weeks ago when I can no longer ignore the dysfunctional systems at my school. Admittedly, my principal is not a great leader (he's a nice guy though). I am moving districts in the Fall but wonder if EVERY school has its dysfunctions and if I can handle that anymore since it creates unnecessary duress for staff.

As 1 basic example, it makes sense to me that SPED would collaborate with classroom teachers. Having discipline that's not just therapeutically based makes sense to me. Using philosophies over programs makes sense to me.

Am I too _________ (fill in the blank) to find a fit with ANY school if my bull#### meter is fine tuned? I've been teaching since 1996 and am very enthusiastic about teaching and keep growing and asking myself how I can be better. I am not burned out, but am discouraged.

Any words of wisdom would be appreciated.


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Just like anything else,
Old 02-26-2019, 10:44 AM
 
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All schools have pros and cons. The trick is to find a setting where the pros are appealing to you and the cons are livable.

If you make a list, put your non-negotiable items at the top--deal breakers as it where...

Then make a list of pros and cons of schools you are considering...

The hard part is that we often cannot find out about some things until they occur. And people are often cautious when speaking about their school as they do not want it known to others they have badmouthed the workplace.
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Old 02-26-2019, 11:55 AM
 
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If you find one, let me know 😂😂😂
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Like the individual who work there
Old 02-26-2019, 01:24 PM
 
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all schools have good and bad points (ed speak would say positives and challenges)

As the PP says it's all about your personal/philosophical needs, tolerances, and triggers. It is very hard to know from an interview exactly what goes on in a school day to day, both sides are on their good behavior. You can get a picture from state and district websites about scores and demographics, you can drive around the neighborhood after school to get a feeling for who is out and about and what they are doing. You can see what curriculum and textbooks are listed, and ask other teachers about reputations, but you won't really know until you are there for awhile.

To answer you basic question, there are schools that do pretty well for their kids, staff, and parents working together.
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Old 02-26-2019, 02:33 PM
 
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If you are looking for a perfect school, you will always be disappointed. Every job, teaching or not, will come with room for improvement. If you are looking for bullish!t, you’re going to find it.

My school is functional, and I enjoy working there. We still have plenty of crap to deal with, but why would I focus on those things? They just make me unhappy. Typically those are things that I cannot change, so why dwell on them. Sometimes you’ve just got to play the game.


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Old 02-26-2019, 07:17 PM
 
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Quote:
All schools have pros and cons. The trick is to find a setting where the pros are appealing to you and the cons are livable.
Yep! MY current district for example has its stuff that sucks about it, but I feel like all of its suck-ish points are forgivable.

MY last school however, not only couldnt I take it but word of mouth tells me that no one could. 90% of the school -from the office staff to the P, to the teachers have changed in the last 3 years. Many only last 1 year there. Some last less than that.

MY school before that, most stayed some left. It was tolerable for a time since it served its purpose and I never planned to be there forever.

See! 3 tiers bull**** level right there. 1. Good/good enough, 2. Good enough for now but plan to use it as a stepping stone, and 3. Terrible, cant take it.

All you need is to find a tier one that has only a tollerable amount of bull, or only the kind of bull that doesnt bother you too much, or bull that doesnt trickle down to your classroom/school too often..
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Old 02-26-2019, 09:36 PM
 
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Ima Teacher: Well, when SPED doesn't collaborate with the classroom teacher, I wonder how to report out on how that child is doing, and I lose out on some relationship with the child and the SPED teacher.

I want to work smarter in a school, not harder.
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Old 02-26-2019, 09:38 PM
 
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Good points--thank you!
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Old 02-27-2019, 04:25 AM
 
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I think Ima gave you wonderful advice. I donít know that you can receive it. We live and teach in a real, not a perfect, world or school. Reality seems to fall very short of your high expectations and your belief that you do things right and are badly placed in schools that do things wrong with teachers who arenít as capable as you are. I donít think changing schools or districts will help. I think the problem of being able to deal with the imperfect and being less rigid and more flexible may follow you in whatever job you take.
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Old 02-27-2019, 04:52 AM
 
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Quote:
Ima Teacher: Well, when SPED doesn't collaborate with the classroom teacher, I wonder how to report out on how that child is doing, and I lose out on some relationship with the child and the SPED teacher.
I've taught with SED self-contained, consultation, collaboration, and co-teaching. They all had their positives and negatives. The thing was, in each case, the schedule was dictated, and we had to make it work, even when it wasn't the best.


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Old 02-27-2019, 05:00 AM
 
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I can empathize. I'm engaged in a constant battle with myself over where to draw the line between apathy and passion. Too much passion leads to frustration and becoming discouraged. Too much apathy and I feel like I'm failing and losing my vision and mission.

Perhaps it's an unsolvable problem and waging the battle is actually the solution.
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Old 02-27-2019, 09:36 AM
 
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Thanks for the feedback Casstree. MaineSub summed up my dilemma more articulately than I could.

My analogy is yoga: I want to be in a yoga studio that has dharma talks and teaches the whole body/mind/spirit, at levels beginner through advanced. I don't want to go to a corporate yoga studio that focusses on just the body and how much you can sweat. This has to do with what suits me, and if that means high expectations, then yes--I have high expectations for myself. It's how I can bring my best to the table for children. And I am flexible, by the way. I just know what's a good fit for me! (again, the yoga analogy).
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Old 02-27-2019, 03:07 PM
 
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I mean, personally I'd be happy my kids are getting serviced everyday :P There's some schools where that's not happening.
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Old 02-27-2019, 05:59 PM
 
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First I would say don't go to Medicine Lake Montana

Every school has issues....some issues are just more obvious than others.

Someone once told me NOT only are you being interviewed you need to interview any new school you go too. I find that when you are going or looking to go to a new school do your homework. Ask around. Teaching is really sometimes just a small world. Find out what your administration is like. Ask a union if there has been issues and if so what are they.

Make a list of pros and cons....what is the deal breaker for you?
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Old 02-28-2019, 07:45 PM
 
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Thank you! All good food for thought!
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