A Phillie Teacher

I was a starry-eyed teacher from New Jersey. Now I work for Philadelphia Public Schools.


Posted by aphillieteacher on November 3, 2009

Bob Herbert wrote an interesting column for the NY Times where he mentioned the importance of attracting talented, intelligent people to education and hiring them in groups so that they could build a sense of comradery and avoid the feeling of isolation so many new teachers feel. editorial here

I know that feeling. Every day I find myself swimming as fast as I can against the current of interruptions, deadlines, student behavior, parent phone calls and papers to grade – just to keep up. No one stops by my room to kibbitz and every day I eat alone in the Faculty Lounge. Aside from the 70 year old janitor, apparently I am the only one who uses that room.

Today we’re having a one day district-wide inservice/professional development. I eagerly signed up for classroom management and noticed that our principal also signed up two other teachers who have difficult classes. I’m hoping to get a little more insight than

  • reward good behavior with candy (no mention of the wrappers left on the floor)
  • don’t take any bullshit. Talk tough (ummmm that hasn’t worked)
  • call their parents. That’ll straighten them out. (Called nearly every one of them. Very little change seen)
  • My boyfriend spoke with a professor he knows at U of Penn about my situation. The man’s advice: “Get out now. If she doesn’t have their respect she’ll never have it and they won’t change their behavior.”

    Today I hope to hear from the District gods. Maybe they can help me.


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