A sample from Book 4…Exert From Chapter 7
Chapter Seven…More Money, Less Work
In 2005, hurricanes hit our region and we were forced to move back home. Weeks after the storms, parents of the New Orleans’ area were scrounging to get their kids back into school; at this point, any school, it didn’t matter where. Before we left in October of ’05, schools as far as Shreveport were overflowing with students from the Orleans’ area.
My fourth assignment dealt with this issue head on. I pretty much felt like those students who lost their familiarity—lost. I began facing one problem after another, which brought me face to face with major educational issues that I had not encountered before. [Book 4 was written in 2007.]
My first challenge was finding a job. I needed to finish out the semester in order to qualify for my certification. To put it lightly—I needed two and a half months of classroom time, anywhere, but it had to be in English.
The job I took was the only thing available in the middle of the semester. It was a full-time assignment, but I was only offered substitute pay. That meant no benefits. I thought that was odd, but I accepted it because I needed the classroom time and it was an English position.
I did learn later that this particular parish habitually hired college graduates not yet certified at sub-pay, so they didn’t have to pay them benefits. This may be good business for the school district, but not for the teacher because that is time lost in the retirement system. So, a fresh teacher again—still not finished my third year and having to bounce from system to system and not knowing what God had in mind—about to go through the most stressful of my teaching assignments up until that point.
The school was so overcrowded because of students coming from New Orleans that teachers were teaching around the clock. They had no breaks.You may say What’s wrong with that? or I work until five with no breaks, teachers get off at three.
If you have not worked as a teacher, you would not understand what I’m talking about. That hour or ninety minutes given to teachers labeled as planning periods is what keeps most teachers sane.
It gives us the chance to release the tension and plan our lessons for the next day without doing it at home, which most of us still take work home, and most of us usually don’t leave school until four or five; later if you are in charge of a sport or club or tutoring. I took on one 11th grade class and two 9th grade classes. I will have to stray here a little because one has to understand the true insult here to comprehend how I felt.
As a person who only had a couple months of teaching to do then I would have a teaching certification (it’s like a lawyer getting a law license or a doctor getting a license to practice—it’s that important), I felt, over all, that I was completely taken advantage of. I thought, at first, it was the storms, but, after a while, I learned different. I learned that hiring teachers on sub-pay is common practice. I met one teacher who had been on sub-pay for an entire year.
Now, let me explain fully. I have talked about this before but I don’t think the general public fully understands the ideals of becoming a teacher. I’ll say this generally because if the understanding was there, then there wouldn’t be so many complaints against teachers nor the blaming of teachers, and, for sure, these professionals wouldn’t be hired on as subs.
A teacher is someone who has gone through many professional teaching classes at over $500 a pop (a lot of times out of their own pocket), and who has studied the art of teaching. Can you understand the insult: To be hired on and get paid what schools pay non-college people to sit with a class while the teacher is out sick.
The teacher has to leave instructions and work for the substitute to pass on to the students. A sub makes about $70 a day. So, I was hired as a sub—no benefits: No medical, and if I got sick or had to tend to my children—no pay. You might say Oh! Big deal. Well, it is a big deal….
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Additional Readings On Improving Self and Going After That Dream
(Each page has loads of additional books (in every format), videos, instruction materials, and inspiration gift ideas.):
A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose by Eckhart Tolle
A Woman of Substance by Barbara Taylor-Bradford
Become a Better You: 7 Keys to Improving Your Life Every Day by Joel Osteen
Beloved by Toni Morrison
Fearless by Max Lucado
Fifty Shades of Grey by E. J. James
How Not to Be Afraid of Your Own Life by Susan Piver
How Successful People Win by Ben Stein
How To See Yourself As You Really Are by The Dalai Lama
Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg
Love is Letting Go of Fear by Gerald G. Jampolsky, M.D.
Ship of Gold in the Deep Blue Sea by Gary Kinder
Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry into the Value of Work by Matthew B. Crawford
The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich by Timothy Ferriss
The Third Wave: An Entrepreneur’s Vision of the Future by Steve Case
Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson, M. D.