Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Compare & Contrast

The fact that it's mid-November is still mind baffling to me.  This time last year, I was emotionally done with work.  I was tired of having others seek out opportunities to make me seem inferior.  My grade level was amazing, but the respect seemed to end there.

The days I was observed last year?

1. Thursday of the first week of school.  We are setting up notebooks and building class norms.
2. Halloween afternoon.  
3. Thursday afternoon before winter break.
4. The Monday morning after winter break, when we had been in the classroom for 10 minutes.
5. The Thursday before field day, which was right before spring break.

Yup, those five magical days are what my evaluation was based on.  Was this fair? Absolutely not.

I've been formally observed once this year.  My admin has popped in, my coaches have popped in, but I've had one formal observation.  We had both pre- and post-observation conferences.  It was a Tuesday afternoon and was planned.  Did it go perfectly? No, of course not. One kid went to the nurse for throwing up.  We had an assembly later that day.  It was a three day week.  However, my admin's first words to me was how great the lesson was and how I have wonderful classroom culture.

My new admin is looking for ways to praise my teaching and find minor tweaks to help me improve.  My old admin? Looking for ways to humiliate and degrade me.  Seeking out ways to make me feel stupid, not ways to make me feel empowered.

Glad I switched.  As an educated professional dealing with thirty different youngsters, it's nice to be treated with respect.  It's nice to hear what a positive difference I'm making and that I'm appreciated.

While scary at times, I'm glad I took the risk and changed schools.

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