Friday, June 03, 2016

The End of the Year

So yet another year has ended. It's been a very difficult year for me. I had to deal with some of the most arrogant and belligerent students in my career. While there are some I will miss and that I wish the best in life, I was so beaten down by the negative experiences that I didn't follow through with some of my own traditions. I didn't give my seniors graduation cards, small gift cards and contacts for me. A part of me regrets this, but in a way it allows me to release this year and all it's bad experiences.

I'm getting closer to retirement. I can see it around the corner, but it's not close enough to really plan anything other than work and more work. I find myself ridding my classroom and files of 15 years of lesson plans and promotions. My room is cleaner than it's ever been at checkout. It is as if I won't be coming plans, maybe premonition. I don't know.

I find myself somewhat dreading the next year. Whispers have it that there is yet again "something new" in special ed and all signs point to a situation where they get rid of the AVLS classes and put seriously disabled kids in regular classes for the case of agenda over education. We're also under new mandates to monitor G/T students in our classes. With reports for G/T, ESL, 504 and SpEd students you have to feel for the poor average kids who are getting shortchanged because nobody wants to admit that sometimes placing students with like abilities together helps them achieve.

I also find myself surprisingly relieved that I'm not fielding both AP Art History and AP Studio classes next year. At first I was mad at what I saw as an end run committed by the new teacher who wants to be able to select which students she gets to teach. And I was angry at the prospect of having three Art 1 classes, at the expense of 30 painting students who won't get in a painting class next Fall because of the fear of not having Art 1 open to all. The truth of the matter is our school is grossly understaffed and we need another teacher. We've been told there's no money-a legacy from the prior Superintendent who I'm almost sure was on the take-we had enough to hire three more assistant superintendents at Admin for $150K a pop. Priorities.

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