Earlier last year, when we knew "a recession" was possible, our district superintendent promised that instructional positions would not be cut. Nine months later, positions are being slashed left and right to the tune of 600-900 teachers being surplussed. As an ESE teacher, I always figured that I had some sort of job security. However, lately I have been hearing that the teachers from other schools who have been surplussed but have more seniority (been in the district longer) may be given our jobs. Let me first hasten to add that these are rumors not facts that have been validated. It is scary. My ESE specialist recently came to me and said that next year there will only be a resource class (my current position) and that the self-contained class will no longer be there. I must say that I am now nervous, the self-contained teacher has been here for almost 15 years-if anyone is to go, who do you think it might be?
It also does not help that my principal is leaving for another school and we have no idea who his replacement will be.
Now, if I am staying that would mean next year I would have 60 or more students that I am responsible for. Currently I have 45 and do not have a lunch time or planning time (against contract rules) because my classroom is a revolving door and as per federal law, these students must be seen for the times and subjects specified in their Individualized Education Plan (IEP). I cannot imagine 60 students in my class. When will I have time for my other duties (SAC chair, Team Leader, Aspiring Leader commitments)? If I am to have a little one and might possibly be on restricted activity, how am I going to manage? If I have to be out in the fall, will I be surplussed? or am I protected by disability?
You can imagine my fears right now. I love my job, but we are a two income family. Not that we live above our means, but I have student loans and dh has other priorities where his 2 children are concerned.
It does not help that we are all in the dark. Usually by now, we get our placement papers for the next school year-we have yet to see it. We have not had any budget meetings - other schools have.
Another thing they are telling us is (another rumor circulating) that if you are on an annual contract, you are going to be let go. I am on an annual contract until August 2009.
I must say it is getting very scary. I am not only concerned for me, but for the many teachers who are single, have children, and will have no jobs come August. What are they going to do? We have teachers with degrees (Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate-like myself) that will be let go. I asked my union steward if your level of degree counts and I was told no. I simply may not have a job because you are on an annual contract.
In the midst of my worry I am reminded; Let Israel hope in the Lord; for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him plenteous redemption. (Psalm 130:7)
I am now leaving it in the Lords hands. If I get a class of 60, I am going to have to do my best and roll with the punches. Lunch??? What's that? Planning? What's that? I will do whatever it takes to keep my job. Please pray that the Lord's will be done.
On a lighter note, my 4th grade students passed the Writing portion of the FCAT (state test)! I have 5 that I see for writing and they all got 3's or higher. Praise the Lord! To God be the glory, GREAT thinks he has done! We are now waiting on the Math and Reading scores.
Is the economy affecting anyone differently? Is anyone worried or facing a gloomy next few months?
Awaiting my expected end.