Monday, June 21, 2010

A Future Uncertain: next year's schedule

So I got my schedule for next year and it is a mixed bag. I like the fact I have a chance to teach the Algebra 2 Senior class because I think I can give them a more realistic vision of what college life will be for them next year. It's a win/win for me because they are going to try (at least first semester) because they need the class to get into a 4 year college. The other big one is that I don't have to worry about the whole CST scores, I can actually teach and, yes, re-teach if necessary.

I actually purposed this class to our team leader about 4 years ago (this will be the 2nd year of the class). As I mentioned back then, seniors in a class will derail any learning that is happening, and our counselors aren't going to move them out cause they have no where else to go. So I am glad to be able to teach something that I actually wanted in the first place.

That's the good (well that and I have an Algebra B again), the troublesome comes in the form of Geometry and my conference period. I don't have a problem with Geometry, but it's not my favorite subject. Students come in thinking it will suck and be hard because of proofs and everything else. So it's an uphill battle from the get go. It can be abstract at time which frustrates the more linear (algebraic) students as well. So I have 3 periods of that...great. And on top of that, these might not be the best Geometry students since I am seeing 40 potential students in Algebra B in the summer...more on that later...about 4 weeks.

The bigger concern is my prep. I have asked for 1st off and have gotten it for the past 2 years. We live about 30 minutes from work and if I want to get there before traffic hits I need to leave around 6:30, by myself. Now my wife and I carpool pretty much everyday, so we would leave by 7 and I would get there a few minutes after school started missing the "drop off" rush.

Well, as you probably guessed, I don't have first off fact not one math teacher has it off, due to budget cuts and retirements. So on top of our 5 furlough days (10 when you count my wife [we teach in the same district]), now I have to put out about another $1500 for gas next year. So the question is, why not just leave together at 6:30? Well, we used to. In fact, we used to leave by 6 - 6:15 about 5 years ago. The fact of the matter is that it is difficult to get the kids up and fed and out the door by that time...especially since my wife doesn't need to be at work until 8:15. So you can see her point of "let them sleep". I think that will have to do until we see that money becomes tight and then that may change.

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