I'm a regular poster. I prefer using my name. I am fearful, though, of being identified with any of my posts.
The rumors are flying about RIFing at our district. Morale is low. I'm thinking that I probably won't get RIFed. Many, many teachers are below me in seniority.
I feel so bad not only for the two young-at-their-career teachers in our grade level, but also for all those who are posting on PT that they've either been RIFed or gotten a pink slip or whatever it's called for each district. So many things to be concerned about -- how to pay the bills, and everythng else.
Here's another thought. After the RIF, comes the "Staff Shuffle" which in our district can, and does, go on until the school year begins -- even after that some years. Several teachers in our grade level had their teaching assignments changed up to 2 weeks before school started this year.
And then the other side to that thought is for those of us who know the admin doesn't like us and we can't figure out why. Where on earth will they put us? I had a very large change to my teaching assignment this year. What on earth can they do to me next year?
I have enough on my plate being concerned about family health issues to last me for a good long while. Dealing daily with the unknown, nausea, difficulty eating, and all that jazz because of school is making it tougher than ever to drag myself outta bed and make it to school. Once I'm here, I do pretty good. I love working with the kids.
The tension is all around us, no matter whether we're being RIFed or dancing the Staff Shuffle.
RIF= reduction in force if I'm not mistaken. They are RIFing in my district, I feel my job might be OK (but I'm not too confident about it), but I'm NOT looking forward to the staffing shuffle. I was shuffled to first from third 3 or 4 weeks into the school year and the teacher I took over for was bumped to another grade level in another building. And this past year was a year in which they were not RIFing teachers. So I imagine this next school year is going to be a mess......
I know that in Arizona all districts are feeling the blow from a new governor taking over and imposing major cuts in education funds. When I came out here three years ago, I had my pick of jobs, and it was the same until about 3 months ago. Now they're RIFing teachers left and right. This year I started the school year with 39 students, I'm scared to see what happens when there are budget cuts next year...45 students, 50? How high can they go?
It is happening in my district also. I'm high enough up that I won't get a RIF, but I am so frustrated with the way administration is doing it. They are cutting teachers just so they can keep their jobs.
Maine has a large percentage of administrators per school district compared to other states. Districts were told to make cuts in administration, transportation, and Sped. My district did not make any cuts in administration. They cut a bus driver and kitchen worker (6 months before her retirement). They said they made a cut in administration: we no longer have an assistant superintendent, now we have a curriculum coordinator. It's the same job, just a different title.
Now they have cut our only middle school and high school ESL teacher to half time. A technology teacher who has been in the district for a long time is being reduced to 4/5. Our Title Teachers were being replaced with Ed Techs. More is coming...just so all our administrators can keep their jobs.
California is done sending out initial RIF notices and I barely made it, so I feel like I can breathe about having a job. But, they are doing a huge staff shuffle for this next year and who knows where I'll be or what I'll be teaching. I really feel for everybody going through the RIF process and hope it will all work out. Education is going down in the gutter with all these cuts that only hurt the children. How about saving money by not having to adopt a new curriculum set every four-five years? Or how about decreasing the testing? Testing costs a fortune in education, but no, let's cut teachers instead that will bring up test scores and really make our country number one in the world as far as education goes.... Sorry, for the rant, but we are on a vent board!
A weird quirk about me is that in general, I do not respond well to change. However, I have willingly changed grade levels off an on over the past eight years. I enjoy it. I'm fine with the idea of moving grades.
Truth be told, I've never had the rug pulled out from beneath me two weeks before school begins and had to change grade levels last minute. That might send me into a tizzy.
I'm so grateful to have my job. If I am asked to change grade levels, I will deal with it. I have my least favorite grades that I would dread getting pushed into, however, I'd rather adjust to teaching kinder again than have to adjust to living in a one bedroom apartment after losing my job.
Your district does you (a collective you) the courtesy of making changes prior to the start of school. Ours has no compunction about making moves well after the start of school. This year, two moves were made effective October 15th. That's ridiculous. Both people were changed to entirely different settings: one from elementary to middle school; the other to an alternative school. The bright side is that both were still gainfully employed, but I have to wonder if there was not even the slightest inkling that shifting would be necessary and at an earlier juncture.
change. It's the reason for the change. I know in my heart of hearts that my teaching assignment was changed for this year because one of the admins is not real crazy about me.
I've had more than a few giggles this year knowing that when the admin sees me walking down the hall with a huge smile on my face, it's got to get to this person. I have really enjoyed the new position and would have never dreamed I would.
I also can handle the lateness of notification. My first two years working for my district, I wasn't able to get into my room until about a week before school started. I'm a hard worker and many very late nights got the job done.
My biggest fear or whatever is the right word is what will the admin who doesn't like me dream up this time. And will the admin do this again next year, and the year after that, and... ? I'm able to teach a wide range of grade levels, so I could be put just about anywhere whereas those who have newer license may be put only in those designated areas (i.e., lang arts/social studies, grades 4-9).
I am truly grateful that -- so far -- I still have a job. Just wish more people could live by the Golden Rule - Treat others the way you would like to be treated.
Are we in parallel universes or what? I know don't have a job, however, after this year. My princ has seen fit to that already. I am lucky that I called my union rep earlier than she thought to try to get me canned, though. I am also lucky (though a bit dismayed as to why) that she fired me in front of my class. Two parents called me at home this past weekend asking about it and told me they would write letters on my behalf about how happy their kids are, how they are doing so well, etc. What you said made me chuckle too...there was a baby shower after school last Monday. The princ was not too far from me and every time I chuckled or smiled happily while talking to someone, she was just staring. I know she hated seeing that I haven't been crushed. Sigh...9 more weeks (with Spring Break thrown in there too!)
Given that there will be a lot of shifting around at our school sites, our union rep gave us all copies of pages from our bargaining agreement that explain how assignments (or reassignments) to different grades, different sites, etc. are handled.
Some principals I've worked for have just moved teachers around because it "tickled" them to do so. I've seen it.
However, being older and wiser now, I know what the protocol is. If I want to jump ship and go for another grade (that has a vacancy) on my school site, I can request it. If another teacher with more experience in that grade also wants it, I'm out of luck. If I'm unchallenged, the principal would really have to make a case against my request. We are upping our class size in primary to 24-1, therefore, at least one classroom will be eliminated throughout K-3. Someone will have to step down (or up) to a different grade... it won't be me since I'm not the lowest in seniority.
I'm full aware that when an admin. is out to get you they'll do everything they can to throw a wrench in the machine. What a terrible environment to work in.
We recently discovered that although the initial timeframe to receive a RIF notice is March 15th. The schools can actually continue to RIF all the way in to August under certain circumstances ~ and our current economy allows for that! We could see teachers get RIF notices in August (weeks before school starts!)
And many of the decisions hold in the balance for the May votes on what Obama is trying to pass through. If it doesn't hold, count on more RIFs!!