You know, I knew there were politics in the education field. However, it seems to be that I have yet to find a principal that I feel actually understands and appreciates my efforts.
I have been really struggling at work the last several weeks. I just don't know what to do with my students. They are from a totally different planet that what I have EVER worked with. They steal from each other and from me. They have foul mouths. They think they are entitled to everything on this planet and can't for the life of them figure out why I ever tell them NO. They think they are the most important thing on the planet and that the entire world revolves around them. Now, don't get me wrong. I've worked with kids that have bits and pieces of this attitude. However, the difference here is that the kids I'm working with this time have absolutely ZERO respect for anyone or anything. They never cease to amaze me in the crap they come up with and try to get away with. They are vandalizing things in my room and destructive with things just because they can be. I just can't figure out why.
I have a great mentor this year and I am sure that I have absoltuely driven her nuts over the past several months. I have continually gone to her for advice on what to do with this group of kids. Everyone has said since the beginning of the school year that this group of kids has been horrible since kindergarten (should have been a sign). Every time she tells me something, I've tried it with some or little to no success.
Today I got called to the principal's office. We use the 3 card pull system at our school as a school wide behavior plan. When a student pulls to red, I am suppose to fill out an incident report. In the last week or so we've gone electronic with these. Well, after their 3rd incident they are suppose to go to the principal. I have only sent 1 kid there the entire year for the number of incidents he had. Today I filled out 2 incidents that were 4th incidents so it resulted in an automatic office referal. I feel they were legitimate - the girl was smacking people all day & the boy is just increasing in behavior every single day since November. When I got to the principal's office I was told that "I'm not going to continue to deal with the behavior problems in your room." Now hold on. I'm not sure what behavior problems she's dealt with. In Oct. she told me my classroom management sucked and it resulted in my being placed on remediation. Then in December she told me I was doing great with it. Now, I suck again. She made the comment that "In order to be successful in this district, you have to be committed." Travis' response to this was "Tell her, politely, that the school only gets you for the 16 hours a day 5 days a week that you've been putting in all year." Yeah, right - I'm going to say that to my BOSS.
At this point, I feel that my best just isn't good enough and it never will be at this school for this principal. I told Travis that I feel that for the best interest of my sanity and the well being of our children I will not be able to return to this school in the fall -- even if my principal renews my contract. I just can't keep feeling like crap for doing what I'm doing when my own children are suffering the consequences. What really bums me out is that I thought this school was going to be "THE school." Guess not. In fact, I'm actually now questioning whether or not I should even stay in the field of education. It's gotten to be more about tests and test numbers than actually teaching the students. Teaching students is why I went into teaching - NOT NCLB.
What do you do when you feel like you've just wasted the last 10 years of your life going after the dream you thought you wanted to live for the rest of your life?