Mandate School Counseling in California

In Uncategorized on July 11, 2012 at 11:07 pm

If you have a minute, take a minute and sign this petition to mandate school counseling in California.  A fellow school counselor in California is in jeopardy of losing his job because of Jerry Brown’s continuing cuts to education to push his high speed railway among other things.  You can read his story by clicking the link above and sign the petition yourself.  It’ll only take a second!  If you are an educator with a job, this is a way you can advocate!

Be back soon with a new post!   


The Truth Hurts

In Uncategorized on July 6, 2012 at 4:00 am

I found the inspiration for this post in many personal ways, but it also speaks to my job hunt. I’m on my 8th year of being in my 20’s and I still find myself quite surprised at the lack of honesty in individuals. When you’re a kid, you don’t understand that adults make mistakes and don’t always tell the truth. Unfortunately, the conclusion I’ve drawn is that people are trying to protect your feelings. And I’ve got to say, I’m a little annoyed at this concept. Maybe I’m alone in this thought, but I’d rather feel the sting of the pain than wonder why I’m not being hired.

Case in point: As a substitute, there is no summer work, so we are left to fend for ourselves monetarily. (I’ve set up some tutoring and babysitting for the summer, thank goodness). I joined a website that sets you up with families who need babysitting or tutoring. One day, a family emailed me saying they were interested in me because of my degree and experience. I was very excited and we set up a time to meet(don’t worry, I alerted appropriate people in case it was the Craigslist Killer). I was there for 2 hours, just hanging out with the family, getting to know them. We really clicked. They knew I was requesting to switch the already lined up babysitting and tutoring jobs I had lined up to accommodate their M-Th 7 am-5pm schedule. Long story short, a week goes by and I’ve sent 2 emails to confirm the start date. No response. After the 3rd email, I get a call saying they went with someone else. Okay, that’s fine. But why? Your kids loved me, you seemed like you loved me, money wasn’t an issue. What did I do?

Honestly, I’ll tell you why that incident bothered me so much. I apply to jobs every.single.day. Every day. Several times a day. So much so, that I’m trying to figure out how to make a profession out of it. I digress. It bothers me because I wake up to rejection emails each morning. And I get why, most of the time. I know I don’t have teaching experience(except I do, but apparently it doesn’t count), I’m not bilingual, I am only licensed in one state, I haven’t taken the Praxis(shhhh, don’t yell at me…it won’t help), I’m not nationally certified, and on and on and on. But this is a nanny position I’m talking about here. I love kids and kids love me. Those kids were jumping on me like monkeys. I needed that job, and just like the rest, I didn’t get it.

Maybe I shouldn’t have done this, but being the person that I am, I professionally emailed the family and asked what their reason was. And I didn’t do this because I’m crazy. You know why I did it? For the same reason I seek to grow more and more everyday. I want to know how to improve myself! Look, I get it, 9 times out of 10 I’m not going to be hired. Not even that, I’m not going to get an interview. But why? I’m not concerned about your opinion of me, I just want to be better!

I’m a little tired of the automatically generated “thank-you-but-no-thank-you” emails from HR at a school. Applying to a job is like a lottery. It used to be that you were up against 3 or 4 people for a job, but the numbers are more like 200 nowadays. Because of these numbers, I know it’s impossible for HR to personally respond as to why you weren’t being interviewed. But for once, I just want somebody to email me back and say why they chose to move past my application and resume. Just once. If you are in a position to hire someone, take the time to speak to the other applicants about why you’ve chosen someone else. Please realize there are a lot of us out there who are frustrated and ready to give up. Your constructive criticism could change the game for us. For me. Don’t be afraid to hurt my feelings. I’ll get over it. Help me grow.

By the way, I never heard back from the family. Figures.

In the Meantime….

In Uncategorized on June 29, 2012 at 1:44 pm

I mentioned a few posts ago that I did take on 2 jobs during this school year.  I rode the substitute teacher wave.  I could write a book on those experiences(oh, and I will, so don’t steal my idea).  I’m sure many of you in education without a job have been a substitute teacher.  Let me pause and applaud you because it can be extremely tough at times.  If you handle change well, substitute teaching is great.  One day you’re breaking up a fight between 2 sixth graders who don’t even weigh 70 pounds and the next you’re wiping the nose of a 5 year old.

Looking back over this school year, I’d have to say the teachers were the most difficult to deal with, not the students.  Scenario:  Two 7th grade boys came to me in the beginning of the period to ask if they could go see a teacher about an assignment.  Well, I wasn’t born yesterday and I’m not about to let two 13 year olds just leave class without knowing where they’re actually going, so I simply ask them to get a signed note from the teacher when they return.  Five minutes later, I get a call from the teacher they wanted to see, chewing me out because they see the teacher every day because of an IEP and it’s a waste of her time to sign a sticky note confirming they were there.   Two things:  1.  Don’t ever talk to me in that tone.  2.  How am I supposed to know that when the boys don’t offer this information to me and the teacher I am subbing for doesn’t leave that information?  These are situations I deal with every day.  Pardon me for being smart enough to not let 2 teenage boys out of the classroom for an indefinite amount of time.

I could talk for days about my experiences in substituting.  Oh, and I will….get ready.

I also taught general education courses at a local business college.  I know, I know….they actually let me teach college classes?  I’m still trying to figure that one out.  I’m not sure if I’ll even divulge into this experience, but needless to say, it left me truly sad over an institution that was sucking money out of people who couldn’t pay and gave them a less than stellar education.  I think I’ll leave it at that.

So, you would think that all of this classroom experience would count for something, right?  Ha, wrong again!  I’ll speak more on this later, but if you’re anything like me and have applied for education jobs, you’ll know why.  The part of the application where they ask you to list your classroom experience…have you seen that part?  Well, in case you glazed over the parentheses that says substitute teaching experience doesn’t count…it doesn’t count.  Oh, and neither does faculty experience where you are not a voting member.

Time waster, party of one……

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