Today I saw my teaching schedule for next year -- and it made me deliriously happy. If you get a schedule with good classes -- the ones you hoped to teach and that other teachers hoped to steal away from you -- you always feel relieved. The woman who runs the SPED department in my school is a phenomena -- she is everything one would want in a department chair. She is fair, she is honest, she loves kids, she is a strong supporter of good education, she supports both the school and the district in fundamentally sound ways, she carries enormous power with the administration, and she is pro-union. I respect her on a level I have only held for one other boss, also a strong, intelligent woman.
Anyway, my teaching schedule for next year is a sweet one. I have first period off, which I really, really like. I almost always get to school an hour before the kids. We have 90 minute periods -- only four a day. With first block off, this gives me plenty of time to do lesson plans, get copies made, sort books, arrange desks, etc. I much prefer the early morning preparation routine as opposed to staying after school for an hour or so. And because I'm really not a morning person, I don't have to face kids until 9 a.m. I'll continue to teach my English classes -- grades 9, 10, 11, 12 -- one of each, though the 11th & 12th are a combined class. One of the newly hired SPED teachers this year desperately wanted to "steal" one of my classes, but so far, she has not managed this feat. I didn't campaign to remain in my position -- simply said that we had enough students to separate the English 1 & English 2 classes. Luckily, so far, I'm scheduled to teach them both. Hurray!
I won't complain, though, if the schedule changes - as it is apt to do before next August. As I told the SPED chair: "I count myself so lucky to be in this school and working with this great staff that whatever you want or need me to do, I'm up for it!" And I meant that. Luckily, though, so far, I'm not faced with having to live up to those words.
PS -- if you want to contact me on Facebook, send me an E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll send you an invite to become my friend. Having 20 friends would make me feel really "cool!"