Tuesday, April 7, 2015

I Used to be a Teacher

I used to be a teacher.
I'm not ashamed to admit it. 
It was once a proud and noble profession
Until it became vogue to criticize it.
"I wish I had my summers off too!"
Yeah. So do I.
It never occurred to me
That spending weeks planning,
Writing curriculum, 
Creating review materials,
Formulating testing measures, 
And making it all interactive in this digital world
Would be considered fun and relaxing.
"I wish I got a big check at the end of each school year!"
What can I say?
You don't want to hear that in order to receive that big check
I loaned the school (interest free) money from each paycheck
So as to build up an amount that would pay my bills during the summer.
Yes. I really don't get paid during the summer.
"It must be nice to have every vacation off."
Yes. It is. 
Well...except for that second job I worked 
In order to make sure the last of my bills were paid.
"You only work from 8:00 to 3:00."
Funny how my car is parked
In front of the school
From 7:30 to 5:30 each day.
"You have retirement benefits!"
I do. I paid into that fund for many years.
A lot of people have money set aside for retirement.
Why is it so bad that I do?
I got used to 
The questions,
The complaints,
The criticisms.
I didn't get used to 
The bullying,
The personal attacks,
The lies...
Why should I remain in a job
Where I had to talk myself into the building
Each and every day?
Why would I suffer
Any longer?
What choices did I have?
"Tenure is wrong! Teachers don't deserve a permanent job."
I didn't think I had a permanent job.
I thought I had the right to due process.
You know...like the protection the U.S. Constitution guarantees everyone.
And then...
Broken promises...
A once noble profession was betrayed.
This went beyond my not wanting to endure any more... Any longer...
I used to be a teacher.

Here I am watching the number of teachers dwindle.
Some, like me, retired before they had planned.
Some simply resigned.
Some ended their lives 
so suddenly and completely
That those left behind 
could only weep for their loss
Amid the confusion
of what use to be
A noble profession.

Written by 
Ann MacAbee

1 comment:

  1. Well done . I know exactly what you're going through , and so do thousabds of other teachers . Sunday the LA Daily News wrote LAUSD Teachers : Too Old and Too Expensive...
    ATLANTA teachers who cheated to keep their jobs are looking at 11 years. Teachers who reported the cheating were fired and never even got an apology . Like a few wrongfully terminated teachers in Los Angeles , some of them are now homeless . I was eventually fired because I reported an abusyve colleague and dangerous noncompliance issues at my school . While I sat i teacher jail for two years , I decuded to study the CBA , Ed codes and policy which was all routinely ignored . . My Union did nothing to help us , so I became their Advicate and I still am. But there is not a lot I can do but prepare them for the worse and help them manuever their way out from under the crushing consequences of being terminated . The email me and they call and I know they feel a little better because they realize they're not alone. Many end up contributing our blog ,mHemlock on the Rocks; more than ever are fighting back though most are just eager to be done with their Kafkaesque nightmares . You stay for students . You go without for their sakes Teachers in LA have not had a raise in 8 years , class size is so large there are never enough seats . When I was teaching I had 200 students in 6 classes with 4 preps and numerous unpaid duties. They need 3 subs to civer my classes when I was gone . Now my freinds say they have close to 300 students and no conference periods . They'd no longer getting auxiliary pay Billionaires put bullies in charge at my schools and others like it . These were CEOs, business men and mercenaries who were primarily concerned witn unloading veteran teachers . They were not properly credentialed nd they literally caused the death, illness and breakdowns of teachers . Those driven out and terminated have lost a lot of their pensions and health care . The union could not care less in fact it canceled the legal insurance policies CTA provides just in time for the witch hunts. Teachers are broken , hopeless and it's unlikely we will ever be made whole in a courtroom . So what we do , I guess m is turn ti each other and keep going forward. Since my Kafkaesque nightmare began , I have seen incredibke progress .,parents and teachers are unified in the war against the common core and testing lunacy . Now journalists are tackling the horrors inflicted on public schools by reforners .Billionaires and their minions belong in prison or on the streets begging for spare change . But it will never happen unless we rise up and demand justice . I am wary of hope after OBAMA brave new world it and sold his soul to these Damned plutocrats . Hillary Clinton is even worse when Gken Bec becomes our ally , we are going from a brave new world to the depths of 1984, UNLESS we are ready to become revolutionaries. Teachersolidarity.com brings news from the front lines of the war on education and its a global assault that has left Mexican teacher burning test scores and closing down cities with vociferous protests. Some were recently murdered en Mass for their insolence. When we became teachers we didn't think we would be taking bullets for our students or our ideas, but we are literally and figuratively doing just that . Hang in there ,mBat teacher , what doesn't kill you will make you stronger . Please join the resistance and fight the good fight because thus is all that really matters .


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