So Little Time

I’m nearly two weeks into MY school year (not the kids; they just started Friday). Surprisingly, the first week went well though I was pretty busy, both personally and professionally. I can see that I already have an active group of 5th graders in my Homeroom.

You see, I work in a fairly poor district where 80% of our students are on free or reduced lunch. It’s primarily African-American & Hispanic in culture. A lot of my students don’t receive the proper guidance at home so life, in general, is a challenge for them. But…their hearts are wonderful. Each one has his or her own unique circumstances to deal with yet they all have such beautiful personalities that even my most trying students will ocassionally shine. It’s for this reason that I teach.

At the same time, I’m still unhappy with the lack of appreciation that we don’t receive as teachers in North Carolina. I’m talking in terms of our benefits package. Our state is just so poor that the legistlature had to enact a lottery just to add additional funding for education. It’s getting there but it’s going to take a while to really put in place what teachers need. More often than not on most days, I go home completely exhausted because I haven’t had a single moment to just breathe (and sometimes to use the restroom). In previous positions I have worked in, there was such thing as duty-free lunches. There is a purpose behind that – to give us the much needed break we deserve. Sure, we have “planning periods” but that’s exactly what most of us (good) teachers do during that time – plan. We don’t have the time to step back and take a break because time is of the essence in our field. We are contracted for so many hours a day and more often than we should be, we take our work home with us where we do additional grading, planning, etc. So, what little time we get during the day to “break” is so needed…and welcomed!

Let me get off my soapbox here. I do love to teach and am privileged to do what I do. I just wish I felt more appreciated. A good benefits package would solve that! LOL!

Tomorrow begins the first full week of school. So much to do. So little time to plan so I guess I better hop to it! Yeah, it’s Sunday but what did I just say? A teacher’s work is NEVER done!

Til next time…TQF

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