Next Year…STAY OR GO?

It’s that time of the year when teachers are exhausted, annoyed, and ready for summer. With summer fast approaching, one would think that teachers would be feeling less tense and anxiety. In fact, it’s simply the opposite for many teachers. Some are enduring summer school to make ends meet, financially, and many are contemplating on going back to their schools next year. They’re questioning whether there are better schools out there; however, scared to take that leap of faith. If they go back, will they encounter the same bullshit politics that they experienced prior to this point in their lives? If they go to another school, if even hired, will they experience worse work conditions?

Even when interviewing, educators love to play ‘GOT YA’ questions with their tone-deaf, unauthentic general questions. When I was part of the hiring committee at my previous school, the room turned into a ‘mean girls’ party. Seriously, as the only male in the room, it was awkward to say the least. The teachers and principal talked a lot of ‘smack’ after each interviewee. It was a sad experience for me and I felt bad for the teacher candidates, though, for those who didn’t get the job, I’d say they were better off in a different school. At one point, the principal let us know that her boss (executive director) let her know that she needs to hire ASAP and it’s time to get the 2am candidates because those at 10pm aren’t showing up. Meaning, when you’re drunk, you settle! We started settling for candidates because hiring became scarce. One of the candidates, a newbie to education, interviewed over the phone. When I searched for her on social media, I showed the committee. Drama ensued, of course. Name calling from the committee, including the principal ensued. Her social media said she was a model and boy that sparked debate.

My point is that teachers are in a bind. Leave or stay? Do they leave their comfort zone of instability and chaos for something new and unknown? Do they stay because they come back for the kids? Do they endure an exhaustive, condescending hiring process where they have to prove themselves, professionally and personally? I left the teaching profession and it took me 6 months to find a job. It’s worth the move. I say, if your leadership has failed you and made your experience less than satisfactory, leave! Find a new school or leave the profession and be an advocate like me!

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