“What Does a Student Have to Do To Get Kicked Out of School?” Friday March 31, 2017

So in Betty’s class, there’s a student with some “emotional issues.” This student’s home life is totally fucked. From what I’ve heard she lives with her great aunt because her dad’s in jail and her mom’s dead. She also has two older siblings, but I guess her older brother molested her and she had to be taken away.

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“She seems okay to go back to class”

Anyway, this student had a very bad day today which culminated in her grabbing a pair of scissors and threatening her teacher. From how Betty told it, she grabbed the teacher scissors from her desk, opened them up, and pointed them at Betty and anybody else not to go near her. Then she screamed that she’s “done with this school” and threw them down and ran out of the class to the office crying.

You’d think, “wow, she had a potentially violent episode, she better be evaluated by a professional psychologist before she’s put back in a room with people she could potentially harm,” right? Wrong! She was back in class that afternoon.

According to what the office told Betty, this student acted out a lot more last year and this outbreak was unusual. Nothing to worry about. They’re going to look really stupid if this student ends up hurting herself or anyone else.

Johnny’s coming over tonight. We haven’t really talked about our last fight where he said our baby is going to ruin his life. That should be fun.

“It’s Okay To Hate Some of Your Students” Thursday March 30, 2017

There are some students I can’t stand, but I don’t hate. There is one girl in my class, she rarely gets any work done. But, she has a severe attention disorder. You can watch her trying to focus. She’ll start to work and get distracted by her pencil and start to pick at the eraser. Then she’ll pick something off and study it. Then she’ll shake her head and tell herself to focus. Then she’ll start to write, and start staring at something else, or notice a hair in her face and stop working to look at it. It’s sad. I feel sorry for her because she really does want to finish her work.

tumblr_mezy08dbze1qbm00wo1_500Then there is a student like Tyrese, whom I hate. I hate him because he’s capable of doing work. He doesn’t have a disorder like the other girl. Unless being a total asshole is considered a disorder. Tyrese is malicious in his procrastination and a cancer on my classroom.

I’ll give you a good example. Today I saw him taking mail out of my students’ boxes and putting them back in different boxes. It was during one if his times where he wonders around and I try to ignore him. There’s no reason for him to fuck with my mailboxes, other than to create chaos.

Another thing he loves to do is to steal people’s shit and then pretend to find out and act like a hero.

He also enjoys “borrowing” people’s stuff and then claiming that they gave it to him.

He’s stupid, too. He probably could do the work if he applied himself, but he’s gotten so good at getting out of work that it’s probably easier for him to avoid work than to do the actual work. Also, he’s been in trouble so many times that there really are not any consequences for his actions. Calling his mother isn’t a threat anymore, it’s a daily activity.

The worst part is Tyrese will move on to third grade next year. Even though he failed all his assessments. He should be in Kindergarten. That’s about where is reading level is.

But kids don’t fail teachers anymore; teachers fail kids.

 

“How Do You Continue Working Knowing You’ve Been RIF’d?” Wednesday March 29, 2017

Screen Shot 2016-04-26 at 12.53.44 PMI’m a lame duck. I wasn’t the only one who was RIF’d, but I’m sure I’m the only one who knows she won’t be hired back in the fall. It’s not a good system considering there’s still a solid two months of school left. They basically said, “We don’t give a shit about the last quarter of school. You’ve already done enough.”

The school is contractually obligated to keep me employed until the end of the school year. Wouldn’t it make more sense to wait until the last week of school to tell me I don’t have a position next year.

Pretty much the only motivation I have might be to get a good letter of recommendation from my principal. But I still don’t trust her about it. Why would a principal recommend a teacher they don’t want themselves?

I think I was supposed to have one more observation, but I did so poorly on the other observations that it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. In fact, my principal has done a good job avoiding me since telling me I wasn’t welcome back.

It’s really awkward. Can you imagine firing somebody and then allowing them to work for another 12 weeks?

I understand the point of being able to get rid of bad teachers. There are a lot of stupid people graduating from college. Really we should blame college. If it wasn’t a “for profit” system, maybe they wouldn’t graduate so many retards.

I’m not a genius, but at least I passed the general skills test on my second try. I know one girl in my program who took that test like, 5 times. She shouldn’t be a teacher.

Personally I think I’m fighting for my self-esteem. If I can end the year on a high note I might consider continuing with this stupid career. But if my students continue to act like monsters, I’ll just work part-time somewhere and raise my baby. Maybe I’ll become a nanny.

“I Haven’t Had A Lunch Break In Weeks” Tuesday March 28, 2017

ch951003I’m sure it’s either a government requirement or it’s in my teaching contract, but I’m sure I’m entitled to at least one 30 minute break per day.

The sad fact is that I never get to eat lunch by myself. I’m either in a meeting, or keeping kids in from recess. You’re probably wondering, “what about when my kids are at specials?” Those times are planning times for my team. Do

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we make good use of that time? Not really, no.

But! There is hope for me in the fall. Mrs. Jeffers has been

applying for principal and assistant principal positions and she said that if she gets hired she’ll bring me along. I no it’s a long shot, but I’m grateful just to have that hope. I myself haven’t even been looking for jobs much. I probably would, but like I said, I don’t have a break during the day.

And going all day long without a break is exhausting. I thought I was tired before getting pregnant, but not it’s just brutal. I’m tired and nauseous all day.

I’ve been taking it out on my students, too. That only makes things worse. Because if I was nice to them, they probably wouldn’t act out and I wouldn’t have to keep them in at recess which in turn makes me cranky where I take it out on my kids and continue to keep them in at recess.

 

“Working On Your Birthday” Monday March 27, 2017

2d66c0862e93d404f93d014d1565d23312960d07cb23094e7ef72ac417ec475bI should’ve taken today off. I still have days to use up. It’s not like I can save them for next year since I’m being laid off.

Also it’s Monday! It’s bad enough going to work on a Monday, let alone on your birthday. It’s not like they had a party for me or anything. I didn’t even get a card from my coworkers.

And my students were assholes. Well, actually, just Tyrese. I think since I told them it was my birthday he thought that he could get away with more today. He was wrong. I didn’t have any patience for his shit.

Johnny took me out for deep dish pizza, but I just didn’t have the appetite to eat it. He bought me a really ugly necklace, too.

Ug. What an awful birthday. I’m 24, pregnant, and getting married. My life is over. I’m going to get fat. I’ve decided I’m not going to breastfeed. I don’t want my boobs to get ruined. They’re getting bigger! That’s pretty cool, I guess.

But still! I’m 24 and I’m going to be unemployed and pregnant. I thought pregnant women were supposed to be glowing and happy?

Oh, now that we told our parents I’m pregnant, all of our relatives know too. So I’ve received a ridiculous number of congratulatory messages on Facebook about my birthday and my pregnancy.

At least next year I’ll be too sleep deprived to probably even remember my birthday.

“Stop My Life, I Want to Get Off” Saturday March 25, 2017

The word Everything on a To-Do list on a dry erase board to remi

Between getting laid off and finding a new job, continuing to do the work for my existing job, planning a wedding for this summer, and being pregnant, I’m completely exhausted.

Here’s what’s top of mind: I have to update my resume, find references, apply for jobs, do my lesson planning, find a wedding dress, make invitations, make a guest list, find a photographer, a DJ, bridesmaid’s dresses, flowers, lock down the ceremony, lock down the reception, find an officiant, find a wedding cake, plan our first dance, all of that on top of being pregnant—which thank God I have 9 months—because I don’t know what I’m going to do.

As for Johnny, he wants to go to a strip club for his Bachelor party. :-/

But we did call some venues and are going to look at two hotels with our parents tomorrow. It’s in the suburbs so it shouldn’t be too expensive. And we’ll probably just do the ceremony in the hotel. Keep it simple, we’re not at all religious. Also, being pregnant, I’m not even sure if a church would marry us.

So that’s the big accomplishment from last night. My first pre-natal visit is for next month when I’m supposedly closer to 10 weeks. I feel like that’s a really long way off. I haven’t told my work, but I want to. I want them to think, “I can’t believe they’re laying her off with a baby on the way!”

At least Johnny’s hanging in there. He could’ve skipped town of tried to convince me to get an abortion. But so far he doesn’t seem too freaked out. And he seems to have a good job, so at least there’s that.

I’m feeling really tired, though. Also I’m still nauseous. I hope he doesn’t want to go out tonight because I am not in the mood. I’m hoping for a Netflix and fall asleep on the couch night.

“Write My Own Letter of Recommendation?” Friday March 24, 2017

I asked Mrs. Walsh today for a letter of recommendation. I think her official title is Assistant Principal, but I’m not sure since she seems to pull a lot of the IEP students. Anyway, she told me to write something up and she’d sign it. What the hell is that?

63659b6cbab3f3dffa4eee1572219c82231f85d1a834fa286ef327b9c1023c99If I’m going to write my own letter I might as well just write up a letter from Principal Belstead and forge her signature.

I guess it makes sense. Mrs. Walsh is busy and her only real experience with me is taking Tyrese out of my class. But still, doesn’t she have a generic letter of recommendation that she can use?

I’m not very good at self-promotion as it is. Also, I failed my observations so my self-esteem isn’t exactly in a great place right now.

Mrs. Walsh telling me to write my own letter is going to make it weird. I have to write it from an administrator’s point of view. Let me try:

“To Prospective Employers of Jessica Sinclair,

I highly recommend Miss Sinclair as an elementary teacher. Miss Sinclair worked as a long-term substitute teacher during the 2016–2017 school year. She was given the position about a week before the start of school. We gave her the lowest possible wage allowed by the union and did not provide any training or supplies.

Even after the teacher she was substitute teaching for officially quit and took all of her teaching supplies, Miss Sinclair continued to be our bitch as we treated her like a substitute teacher and evaluated her as a first-year teacher. Obviously, the teacher Miss Sinclair was subbing for didn’t come back because her classroom was filled with the worst-behaved students from darkest depths of hell.

There were several days where Miss Sinclair did not openly cry, and even though she was completely unprepared for her position she managed to avoid a nervous breakdown.

Sincerely,

Mrs. Walsh

Something like that, right? Fuck it. I’ll probably just take something off of the Internet. Honestly, I don’t think I would recommend myself because I don’t want to be a teacher anymore. But what the fuck else am I supposed to do? This was my lifelong dream. I don’t have a fall-back. Right now my fall-back is to just have babies and let Johnny take care of me, and that’s about as bad as saying I’ll just live off the government.

Since I am being laid off I qualify for unemployment. So my plan right now is to go on unemployment.

Tonight Johnny and I are supposed to make more wedding plans. But he just realized this week that he gets a Bachelor party and apparently that’s all he can talk about.

 

“Officially RIF’d” Thursday March 23, 2017

Kirk-Teacher-LayoffsI received my pink slip today. Okay, it wasn’t pink; but it was a letter saying that the school’s staff is undergoing a “reduction in force” and that my position is being absorbed or dissolved or something.

So technically, I’m being let go due to budget cuts—not poor teacher performance.

Which means, I could ask for a letter of recommendation from my principal and put her down as a reference. The question is whether or not I can trust to her if another principal was to call and ask if s/he should hire me. I don’t know if she would say that.

I wasn’t the only one that got RIF’d today, though. One of the first grade teachers received the same letter. She also said that Principal Belstead gave her poor reviews. The first grade teacher is actually trying to fight it. Apparently her husband is a law student and is working with our union to appeal the review.

I wouldn’t do that. Even if you win, what kind of working environment would it be knowing that your boss hates you.

Our principal did have too much power. I think that’s why Mrs. Walsh came in in the middle of the year. I think Mrs. Walsh would give me a letter of recommendation. I’ll ask her.

It’s a frightening thought, though. To be pregnant and getting laid off. My health insurance doesn’t run out until the end of summer, but I’m most likely due in November. I looked into joining Johnny’s health plan and for our family it would be close to $600 per month! That’s outrageous considering I pay nothing for health insurance right now.

I’m not feeling right, either. I’m sad and feel sick. There’s been a lump in my throat all day and a queasy feeling in my legs if that makes sense.