teachin' school

first day back

well, it was inevitable…

school started again.  i barely slept last night so when my alarm went off at 5:20 am this morning, i had to gather all my mental and physical strength to get myself moving.  it’s not like i had a bad attitude today.  i’m just so tired.  even after a wonderful, fun two-week break, i feel a mountain of pressure on my shoulders.

i’ll be honest – it’s been a tough year.  my sixth.  you’re told that every year after the first gets easier and easier.  then when you get to your fifth year, you are supposed to be a “seasoned and experienced” teacher.  in a lot of ways, that is true.  i definitely know how to react to situations and the kids now.  i still make mistakes and i still learn something new every day.

but education is changing.  and not slowly.  it’s a rapid evolution.  the emphasis is on standardized testing.  we can hardly keep up with the technology updates (and i’m my school’s technology integrator!).  the pressure is on the kids, but more on the teachers.  it’s stressful.  i have had more pressure this year than any year before.  but i know i’m a good teacher.  i consistently make above average scores on my evaluations.  i work my ass off every single day.  i put my heart and creativity into my work.  i love my subjects and literally learn something new every day.  i am challenged mentally by my friends and co-workers.  i truly care about my students and their strengths and weaknesses.

there are whispers around school and the state about the future of our newly instated standardized test.  it’s a ridiculous test. every teacher in the great state of texas will tell you that.  don’t get me wrong…there’s nothing wrong with high expectations, but when less than half of the state’s students can’t pass it, there’s a serious problem.  the talk is that there will have to be some major and speedy changes due to lowering graduation rates.  (each student must pass 12 extremely hard, long, and timed tests in order to graduate, four a year.)  did i mention that this test was implemented only last year???  who knows what will happen.  but when a decision is made, i hope it is one that is in the best interest of the students AND the teachers…

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