Current/Recent Reading List

15 April 2008

I'm a Made Man

Not quite in the same way the guys from "Goodfella's" were, mind you. Last Thursday an office assistant brought me the following ominous note:

Please see me during your planning period. This is an important matter regarding your employment for next year.
-The Principal

I suppressed feelings of panic enough to make it through the class period, then went down to check on it. The agony wore on as I had to wait while he dealt with a couple of boys who had been fighting. Then, when I finally got in, he explained it was nothing bad, and in fact was good. Because of the particular license cycle I am on this year, he had to make a decision to deem me a tenured teacher at the school, or to let me go. "You're too good for me to let you go, so I'm signing off on your tenure," he said.

Now, tenure for public school teachers does not offer the all-encompassing protection it offers for a college professor. Essentially it means that I cannot be moved to another school by the county office against my will, and that my position cannot be eliminated unless our student population dwindled tremendously, and even then I believe they would have to find a spot for me. Of course, I could still get fired for not doing my job, and I suppose there are a number of unforeseen disasters, like half the county getting wiped out by an alien flu, that could alter my employment status. But basically, I'm safe.

Still, the "made man" analogy might not be too far off, judging from the mood around the school the last couple of weeks. Let's just say that everywhere I turn teachers are talking junk about other teachers, palpable dislike hovers over most meetings, and malicious subtexts abound. Yikes. Better find Tessio and Clemenza (I know, I'm mixing movies).

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