Monday, August 15, 2016

Stuck in the middle with you

This is yet another post from my time at Crappy ISD nearly two years ago.  While I'm no longer job-hunting (hallelujah!), it occurred to me that this post might have some valuable information that you lay parents and potential teachers might want to consider. 

While in the midst of applying for any and all other jobs that I see online (“Make money working from home.  $4K in one month.  Apply now!!”  That one looks promising.),  I see that my district is still looking to fill about seven different positions at my school.  If I’m correct, these are positions that have been open since the beginning of the school year.

I wouldn’t say our state has a teaching shortage.  Normally you can’t swing a dead cat and not hit a teacher looking for work (they love cats.)  But if you are looking for teaching work in November, this has to raise some red flags.  For example, why can’t the school fill this position?  Are their standards too high?  Do the interviewers turn people off?  Maybe not enough people are applying, and if so, why is that?

For me, I wonder about the applicants.  Why would an applicant be looking for a job two months after the school year is underway?  Most teachers, if they get laid off, get laid off at the end of the school year.  A teacher would have to be pretty awful, or engaging in criminal acts, for a school to get rid of them midway through the year.  But maybe the applicant quit because he or she realized that he or she is at a horrible school, and sticking it out until the end of the year is too awful even to contemplate.  I wasn’t talking about anyone in particular when I wrote that last sentence.

Yes, I realize there are exceptions to every rule, and every person's situation is unique, but to cancel out what I just wrote, there aren't that many exceptions, nor are they all unique. 

During my second year at TCS, the administration hired three staff members part way through the school year.  One was a math teacher, who quickly distinguished himself by openly pursuing some of the female teachers, despite his obvious handicap of being married.  He even told his students how he wanted to “get with” certain teachers.  One of those teachers he wanted to “get with” clearly had a drug problem or was bipolar.  She also came in midyear, to replace a science teacher who quit.  Ms. Bipolar/drug problem was let go after the administration found out she was offering to buy the students booze.

The other midyear find was a counselor who became one of our administrators.  Said counselor's makeup got heavier and heavier during the school year, while her hair extensions became longer and her skirts shorter.  She was seen “servicing” a social studies teacher in his car in the school parking lot, and then bragged about it to some of the other teachers a few weeks later.  Ms. Counselor also showed up drunk to chaperone the prom. 

Midyear finds – what finds they are!  At your next parent-teacher conference, ask the teacher when he/she started working at the school.  If s/he came in midyear, it’s time to ask for a schedule change.