Almost every day my colleagues and I meet as a team in our middle school to discuss various issues from student intervention to who is using the computer lab. Lately it seems we have all been overwhelmed with our class load, our paper load, our lack of working technology, and the changes in our school dynamics. Today another bomb was dropped on us and I feel it necessary to write them a letter.
To my beloved colleagues:
It seems like since the end of last year we have been faced with adversity we can’t overcome. We were told our teaching assignments were going to change, people were going to get laid off, budgets were going to be cut, etc. We all finished the year as best we could and as always we were there for the kids. Needless to say, we needed the summer to step away from our teaching jobs. Despite our renewed energy, it seemed each of us had a semblance of anxiety about where we were headed going into the school year. In four very short weeks I am seeing the pure exhaustion on everyone’s face. We are being challenged by the district, our governor, and our diverse classroom situations. Last year when we were dealt the blow about funding cuts and lay-offs, we were able to get back up and continue to fight for why we truly teach, and that is the kids. Once again we were dealt a blow to us with another change. Sheer disappointment encompassed all of our faces when we found out we were losing one of our colleagues to the elementary school. It appears this change is going to be temporary, but all the same, we were knocked down again. As a matter of fact, I honestly felt we were kicked in the gut while laying on the ground.
Now, even though our first four weeks have been a flurry, it seems we have been in school for almost an entire year. What I am seeing is falters, cracks, a failing foundation and I include myself in this equation I am spelling out to you. I am writing this to you to say this is not who we are. We are not a crumbling foundation. We are a strong, united group of educators who care about our students. We are fighters who need to pick ourselves up and continue to do our jobs the only way we know how and that is doing them well. Even when we haven’t always agreed, we at least try to come to a resolution. We have numerous factors trying to discourage us from being the supreme staff that I have come to care about and love with all my heart. We need to continue to persevere and be there for our students the best way we know how. I want to encourage all of you to keep your heads held high, and lets be there for each other. We are going to be the ones who come out on top because we care about the kids we come into contact with every day. We are the ones who make the positive difference in those student’s lives. Remember, if we only reach one student, we have done our jobs! Continue to lean on each other and help each other out. I love you all.