Thursday, August 16, 2007

Stressful Couple of Days

As most of you know, I am pursuing my Master's Degree in Elementary Education. On the schedule I am now, I am set to finish classes next August and then I would have to student teach for 12 weeks. If I am in a teaching position already, I don't have to do the student teaching and therefore go unpaid and without health benefits for 12 weeks.

Since teachers are so needed in much of the US, you can actually start teaching in North Carolina using "lateral entry" prior to having your teaching license. You just have to be working towards it and have passed the PRAXIS (teaching exam) to be eligible.

What I did not know was that most elementary schools and their principals do not hire lateral entry. If I wanted to teach middle or high school, I would get in no problem.

Anyways, I have had a few interviews, but I have chalked most of them up to practice as the education world seems to be very different from the corporate accounting world. But on Monday, I interviewed with a charter school here in Raleigh and they actually offered me the job. But today I am turning it down for multiple reasons.

First, they couldn't even pay me close to what the first year teachers make in my county. And basically, it wasn't even enough to cover daycare costs. Then, I would have to walk out of my current job as classes start next Wednesday. I just can't do that. And the school. I would be going in as a brand new teacher, no experience, teaching in a school that tests scores have gotten so bad the school is deemed a "low performer" by the state. Talk about challenging.

So this week has been stressful. I would love to teach as soon as possible, but I know that I have to make the right decision in doing so. I can't just jump into someplace just because they are willing to give me a job. Ray has been the grounding voice in all this. He is the one that brought me back to reality and helped me talk through all of it.

After many discussions with Ray and looking at my class schedule and such, I am going to try and accelerate my classes. As in take more than one class at a time. It may mean a couple more late nights for me, but if I can get into student teaching by next spring, then just maybe I can start teaching for real next fall.

21 comments:

Happy Working Mom said...

I really, really envy your goal and your final outcome, but I don't envy you having to take more than one class to get there. I know how hard that will be for you and how tiring as well. But you'll have a great job with great hours! So good luck!

It's great that Ray is such a support to you!!! That helps a tone!

That Chick Over There said...

I had a very similar situation while I lived in NC. There was a charter school that was willing to give me a job while I got my degree, but the pay was...oh, it was extraordinarily low. I can't recall what it was, but it wasn't even minimum wage if you calculated it all out.

It's such a hard position. I've totally been there. Basically the reason I'm not teaching school now is because of the pay.

I hope it works out for you. :)

Edie C said...

I totally think you made the right decision. That would be really tough. And you want your first year of teaching to be an enjoyable one. I'm not so sure that would be.

Don't give up. The right position will come along.

Kellie said...

You're doing an awesome job at this and I, too, evny your goal and the final outcome. You're dedicated and hard working and should be SO proud of yourself :)

Beckie said...

It amazes me how how education varies from state to state. I really wish we had Charter schools in WA, but we don't.

I, too, think you made a good decision. After you get your degree you will get the right job for you! Good luck with your studies!

CPA Mom said...

YOU.CAN.DO.IT. HP takes 2 classes at a time while working full time so I know it's possible.

Pam said...

It sounds like you have made the best decision for your family...congrats to you for making the hard choice and doing what is best, even though it was tempting to take the job. I think trying to finish classes a bit early so you can try to get a full time teaching job for next school year is great. It may be hard to try to take two classes at a time, but one tough year will give you much more flexibility and choices next year. It sounds like the best course of action for the long run. Then you will be able to interview earlier in the summer and not have to leave your job in less than a week, etc. Good luck with it all.....can't wait to hear how it goes for you along the way!

Amy said...

Sounds like you have a good plan in place. Good luck!

Lost A Sock said...

You're doing the right thing. When I took my first teaching job, it was the first one offered to me. It was not a grade I wanted to teach, and it was for much lower pay than I should have accepted. But I needed a job. After that, thirteen more job calls came in, and I turned them down because I didn't want to quit on my new principal before I started. I was SO DUMB. The next year, I got a new job. ;o)

I so admire your great planning and motivation.

ChrisB said...

I can't say that I understand your education system but after all the dedicated effort you have put into this you need to feel you are getting a good salary at the end of it, as well as getting the experience and pleasure from your chosen career.

Willowtree said...

Good luck with the job search, but I can't imagine why anyone would willingly stand in front of a pack of wild children!

Donetta said...

I am grateful that you dream big and persure it well. Teaching is a trust. A privilege that is high in costs and investments of self and energies.

Lizarita said...

Don't you love having someone in your life who "grounds" you? If *I* didn't have Justin to ground me? I'd be broke and living in a van down by the river.

Jilt said...

You can do it! I finished the last year of my master's program while working a 50-hour-a-week job and taking RCIA classes to convert to Catholicism. Of course, that was WAY before having Pumpkin.

It's possible, but tough. Hang in there and keep the end goal in sight!

Heather J said...

This just wasn't your school, but you can look at it as a positive, right? Someone wanted to hire YOU. You are doing something right. Actually, you are doing amazing, I am happy for you that you didn't settle, like so many people do. You are sticking it out for the job that will be worth it for you and your family, you should be really proud of yourself! I am proud of you!

wolfbaby said...

i wish i could afford to take more classes faster. Im working toward an associates in HIT. Not as important as what you are doing by far!!! i don't mean that rudly just honestly as i think bein a teacher is super important!!! specially now that i have kids;) i believe it is more of a calling to ya'll just don't get paid enough for what you do shaping the minds of the future

SJ said...

You can do this Amy, I know you can! You have great drive and determination and hell, I wish I had half of what you had in you to keep myself motivated.

Good luck and keep your eye on the goal! You'll get that Masters degree and be teaching before you know it!

Rachel said...

Girl, you are superwoman, you can do it!! I wish you all the luck in the world and know you will be a wonderful teacher!

my4kids said...

Sounds like you've got the right idea. I agree about turning down the one job. That would be a challenge as a first year teacher going into a school that is already considered a low performer. Seems like they really wouldn't be ablet o tell you were doing a good job other then maybe the kids would actually learn but that would be a huge stress for you.

la bellina mammina said...

I admire you Amy! Do get some rest though. Good luck!

Heather said...

Sounds like a great decision. I admire you changing careers - scary and difficult, but you're doing everything right I think! (Not that it matters what I think!)

Anyway - you're going to make an awesome teacher.