Saturday, January 13, 2007


My life this last week has been a trying one with many changes. Since returning to my year 4 class after two weeks off, I have been very stressed and unhappy.

This last week has seen the return of another problem student to my class, Joseph. His return sparked most of my other students into misbehaving, resulting in chaotic lessons, fighting children, and a stressed teacher. You would think that a school would support a teacher who's class was difficult, but instead the Head (Principal) reduced my Teaching Assistant's time in class. She took away my support!

During this time, there was also a definite loss of respect for me as a teacher from my students. More children got into trouble and were sent out, good children started to push the boundaries, and my directions were met with complaint and defiance. My 'joy of teaching' was disappearing and the support I asked for wasn't forthcoming.

On top of this I was told Wednesday - not by the Head, but by another teacher - that I would be observed the next day. Not surprisingly, the observation did not go well as my students decided to act up (I had only had Joseph in my class for one day before the observation!) I was tired, stressed, frustrated, and angry with the way the Head was handling the situation. By Thursday night, I was thinking about leaving.

Friday morning rolls around and I am asked to meet with the Head. She sat me down and told me she had to let me go. Not for any real reason, but that she "has to be seen to do something," as the school was to be audited any day.

That's not all - Not only was I to go, but my students were to be split between three classes (one 4th year and two 5th year classes). Not only are students now in the wrong year, but friendships they've made over the years in my class will be destroyed. The three teachers getting my students are of coarse less than happy, and will have to work harder to teach both levels.

What makes me laugh is that all three of my miserable children (Joseph, Skywalker, and Jodie) are being put into one of the year 5 classes! All three in one class - Worst Decision Ever! I can't wait to hear what happens next week!! Hehe!

Here's the real clincher though: the Head told me not to tell my students I was leaving. She said she would tell them that "something personal has come up in Canada, and that he had to go back." Biggest Lie Ever! What happens when I run into one of my students in the street? "Sorry Child, your Principal lied to you!" ??? That's not all! She had me release my class, then hide in the staffroom so that none of the parents could ask "difficult questions!"

How do I feel now? Pretty good actually. One hour after not saying goodbye to my students, my agency (TimePlan) called to book me as a TOC - teacher on call (supply) - for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday! Obviously no lack of work in Birmingham.

I will greatly miss many of my co-workers (they are already invited me for drinks next Friday!) and I will miss many of my children, but I will not miss the crap - excuse my language - going on in management.

I like Birmingham, and I plan to stay longer. The new year brings the winds of change and I plan to ride it - to find something more worthwhile of me.

Thank you for all your support!


Kirstin said...

Screw the Head!

nathalie said...

let me know if you want to come down to munich so i can contact some people and get you into the teaching (adults) world here. the bonus with adults is you don´t have to deal with discipline, if their hw isn´t done it´s not your fault and it is their responsibility to improve and be successful-- you are their guide! hope everything takes a turn for the better, lots of luck!

ps the beaurcratic world sucks!

amy said...

Hey pete, well, I'm glad that you had the confidence to tell the world that a Bitch (oh, sorry, I tend to substitute Bitch for Boss) had the gall to "let you go", as it were. With all the trouble I can only imagine you were having, it's probably for the best, thinking of your mental sanity (and overall wellbeing). And before I blather on more, I'll write you an email. Cheerio!

Lisa said...

Holy crap, Pete! What a @$%%&%$$^*&&(&^(*^!!!!! (Thought I'd edit that out!!) If I was over there I would give that $&^^@^# a peice of my mind!!! Nobody treats my brother like that! I'm glad you're getting more work though. I love you!

Prehistoric Insanity said...


Here I am starting my teaching program, and checking my email with some other Canadian teachers to be, and suddenly I'm like "BEEP"...

Relaying your tale their all really mad and feel sorry for you... That and you've given us all a bit of a scare LOL

Well here's to thing improving dude...

FACT! They can only get better from here

Marianne said...

Peter! Wow, that head sounds like a school kid herself! And an insane one, too, if she lets a teacher go who actually cares. Maybe she should teach that class with the three wackos, she'd fit right in!

I'm glad you've decided to stay, I think Birmingham needs you (and I still have to come visit you there!). Hang in there, and good luck with the new students (and the bureaucrats)!

Lisa said...

Hi Pete! I'm showing mom how to leave a comment on your blog!

Mitch said...

Hey Peter,

Sounds like you are better off without that particular job, but it does sound endemic to inner city schools around the world!

Take care of yourself, and check your e-mail...