Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Tales From The Bureaucracy

This is a tale of something that should I thought was a fight. It shouldn't have been a fight, but it somehow was. So I started to treat it like a fight only to find that my opponent wasn't going to fight.

So now that you're good and confused...

Last week's epic battle that nearly got me a class of Freshmen is over. For now, at least. It looks like I won't be teaching repeaters at all. I'd like to pretend that they were surprised when the Sophomore teachers called their administrative bluff but it was really far less heroic. Counselors and Administrators quickly scrambled to prove that the problem wasn't a problem ("Look! This kid is in credit recovery now! And this one only needs one quarter!!") and we ended up with the same sort of look you use when you didn't quite catch a kid doing something wrong but you were pretty sure he did something. You know? Like "Aaaalll right, you'll get by THIS TIME, but next time I catch you..." and one eyebrow is raised and one finger extended? Head all tilted? Till they look away??? "There." you think, "I fixed them."

And so everyone leaves the hubbub thinking that we've taught the other a lesson and in reality we're no better off than before.

I love my job and I love my school more. I've been there ten years and have seen parents finagle to get their kids in my classes. I teach alongside my former students now and probably bleed my school colors. If I start to hate it here, though, it will be over something like this. If I leave teaching, it will be over something like this.

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