I posted earlier in the week about not being able to turn off the criticism from parents and how it spills over into my life. I have spent the entire weekend thinking about what I want to do and I think that I have come to the conclusion that I don't want to be a teacher anymore. All I can think about is that I wish I could quit my job. I feel financially trapped in this place and obsess about the criticism. I really FEEL the attacks from parents and it upsets me so much and it eats at me. I have been a teacher for 7 years and had office jobs before I became a teacher and I never experienced this kind of vitriol in an office job that equals what we get from parents. One of my colleagues told me that other day that her husband wants her to quit because this job just isn't worth all the pain and frustration. I teach at a Catholic school and the parents have an attitude that " I pay tuition so I can say whatever I want to you." The administration doesn't want to alienate the parents because enrollment is falling and they need the tuition money in order to keep the school open so they never back us up. I am so worn out already as is everyone in my school. I have never been in such an unhappy workplace. Anyway, thanks for listening.
I know what you mean about private school! I think you should start every parent conversation with a prayer - perhaps a subtle reminder that they have chosen a religious school for their child's education would help them temper their comments!
How proactive are you in communicating? I've found that if I regularly keep in contact with "those" parents, they are less likely to be so harsh with me. I email them when I have an issue and also to check in with them to see how the child is doing at home. Then when something bad comes up, they know I care about the child and I've established a decent rapport. It doesn't stop them all from being a little harsh, but it definitely helps me deal with it, knowing that I've done everything I could and placed the ball back in their court.
Our school went through that same little rough patch last year and it has significantly improved this year. If you like working with the kids and you like teaching, please don't give up!
I worked in a Catholic School for 10 years. You are right about the parents and "paying tuition". I resigned from the school as of June 15 and I have not felt so relaxed in years. (I was the principal for the last 3 1/2 years. I now teach in a small public school and I know that the principal will back me in what I do and say. He may have a private conversation and suggest a better way to handle a situation, but he does back the teachers. Have you talked to your principal so he/she knows what parents are doing and saying. The principal should back you.
Private schools are tough. Think twice before you quit in the middle of a year. You may want to try teaching in a public school. There is a big difference. If you quit mid year, word will get around and it may not be easy to get a position.
Think about your first few years of teaching experience. Did you enjoy it? Do you enjoy teaching but not the group of parents you have? Always start and end your days with prayer.
I am sorry that this weekend did not bring you some relaxation and peace. I am sending hugs and strength. What is one thing that you can do at school tomorrow to make your day heaven on earth? Can you surround yourself with the children? Can you take the class outside and read a story? Pray outside? Make a "pilgrimage" to the church and have the children sit in peace for 5-10 minutes. Do something that quiets and reassures you and the kids.
With the atmosphere that you are describing, it must be very difficult to be keep going. I am sorry that your Catholic school is under so much pressure. Pressure can make people do things that cause others stress and worry. Can you live and pray in the moment? Can you create your own kingdom in your classroom and close the door? With a fellow teacher can you support each other so that you can light the way for others? Can your pastor help you?
When school is over each day, can you go and do something "non-school"...walk/exercise, read, craft, visit friends? Make sure that you are eating healthy and energizing meals. Get relaxed before going to bed. Play a mantra in your head to stop thoughts of school entering your "out of school for the day/weekend" space.
Come back to this board when you need help...I for one will be here for you. Blessings!
I understand completely! I work in a public school and I have a better admin than I've had in the past, but sometimes it all seems so hopeless... we love what we do, but really, is it worth all the stress...all the attitudes from parents, the rudeness and unwillingness of the students, and the politics? it's a lot, and I am also thinking about what else I can do...financally though, I also feel trapped...hang in there and know that you are not alone.
I have been teaching for 3 years now and already I am questioning myself. I love to see the light that goes off in a child's head when they "get it". This year though, I am not seeing too many that "get it". All they want to do is clown and fail. Parents aren't much different from the kids. They probably clowned and failed also. When you call them, they say of how much of an inconvenience it is for you to tell them about their child. WTF!!! Anyway, I understand the pain of everyone with a post on here.
Hi. When I started teaching I LOVED it! The kids loved me too. Now, 13 years later, I feel so overworked and exhausted. I work all day, come home and work some more. Kids talk while I'm teaching, talk back and argue when I reprimand them and when I write discipline referrals the Principal "talks" to them and sends them back to class usually with no consequence. I hit the snooze over and over in the mornings not wanting to get up and face the day. I wish I loved it like I used to but I'm just burned out and tired of it. You can NEVER let your guard down or the kids just run all over you. I work 10-12 hours a day and could work more there is so much that needs to be done. I pay our mortgage and have the benefits. My husband works for a very small company and has no retirement or benefits so I definitely feel trapped. There's no way I can do this for 15+ more years! I'm strongly considering getting a Master's in counseling to become a school counselor and get out of the classroom. It's just so draining! It makes me sad that my dream job has turned into something I absolutely dread.