But the Good News Is ...

My school has block scheduling, which means that there are four ninety minute periods per day and eight separate classes over two days. Each teacher has three classes per day and one planning period per day. This is what it says we are entitled to, according to our contract.

So at the end of last school year, our principal tells us that the Board of Ed. decided that we are the only school in Random County that has a full class period for planning every day, and that we would either have to teach seven full classes and have one ninety minute plan, OR we would team-teach one class and have two forty-five minute plans. Both of these options violate the contract.

Last week, the tenured teachers (I am not one of them) requested a meeting with our principal to discuss this schedule. He did not show. They are filing a class-action lawsuit.

But that's not the good news.

I was flabbergasted when I got my schedule. I'm one of those who has two forty-five minute plans, but the person I would be team-teaching with is Mr. D, who is absolutely the last person I would want to work with, ever. It's not just that he doesn't follow the curriculum or that he would rather lecture his students about the merits of Dungeons and Dragons; it's just that he's so darn ARROGANT about his rebelliousness. And since he's tenured, I figure they'll never get rid of him.

So, imagine my delight upon realizing I was stuck with him for forty-five WHOLE MINUTES.

Well, last week I went up to the school to set up my classroom. All I did was put up the bulletin boards and stick some stuff on the wall and put the desks in place. It did not take long at all. [Bonus: There was a brand new computer on my desk!]

I went in to talk to the assistant principal, the one who oversees all our reading program curriculum. It was about a totally different matter, but when I was done she said, "I wanted to talk to you about something."

When your assistant principal says that, no matter who you are, you always think, "What have I done?"

BUT. I was totally in the clear (thank goodness!). She said, "I wanted to talk to you about taking over this program."

Me: [shock!] What do you mean by that?

Her: It's too much for me to do, and you've always been the one to coordinate with everyone and to get a consensus and report to me. How would you feel about using a planning period to do all that?

Me: But I have to teach.

Her: Well, everyone's teaching seven classes this year. But, if you were willing to take this spot, instead of you team-teaching for one of your plans, you would just be working on the program, making copies, making sure everyone has all their supplies, checking to see that everything is working smoothly.

Me: !!!!

Her: It's a big job, but I thought you would be good at it.

Me: [slowly] Well ... I would be doing that for myself anyway ...

Her: Right. But now you would just use the entire period to take care of everyone that's doing this curriculum.

Me: OKAY!!!

So now I get a FULL planning period, PLUS I get the half plan on the other day, PLUS I totally have a student helper so I won't actually be doing it all myself, PLUS I don't have to work with Mr. D! It's a winner all the way around!

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