Why Teachers Peace Out 

I am known for my self-deprecating humor. I am known for saying what no one else will say. Usually, my posts include some crazy, embarrassing admission, an admission that many will relate to. Most of what I put out “there” is lighthearted, silly, and humorous.

This post will be anything but. It will not be humorous. It will not be lighthearted. The only people who will relate are fellow educators. Despite this, I urge you all to read what I have to say here. Maybe, what I have to say will shine a light on a very important issue that touches us all, in some way or another.

What many of my blog followers don’t know is that I have a serious side. I am very passionate about social issues, specifically ones involving education. I am also extremely offended by injustice. Any injustice. I firmly believe that hard work should be rewarded, and that rewards shouldn’t just be handed to someone for doing nothing more than expelling used air.

Even if my words fall on deaf ears, even if my passion to be an advocate for change, changes nothing, at least I put my beliefs out into the world to be potentially heard. At least they are out there, marinating, simmering, bubbling, boiling. 

After that, very lengthy, preamble, I will get to the point.

Let me tell you why education in America has such a horrible reputation. Let me tell you why good, influential teachers leave the profession in droves, with only half their sanity intact. Let me tell you where we need to begin if we want to start improving our education system.

As I sit here, typing, my mind is elsewhere. My mind is on my dwindling bank account. I have precisely $19 to my name (after bills are accounted for) until payday, almost two weeks away.

Sure, sure, maybe I am irresponsible. Maybe I buy $80 shoes on a whim. Maybe I have crippling debt. Maybe. Maybe not. That is not the point. The point is that I sit firmly on the lower-middle class economic rung. The very real reality is that I do not earn a wage that enables me to be 100% self-sufficient. 

I see many of my friends and peers buying homes, getting married, traveling to luxurious locales, etc. and here I sit, worried for my future. How will I ever get out of my noisy midtown apartment? How will I ever save enough money for a down payment for a house? When will I ever stop praying I make it to payday, without having to use a credit card?

Boohoo. I know. It is just so sad. Maybe I should go get another job. Maybe I should continue my education, so that I can move up the salary ladder. Yup. Maybe.

Maybe, instead, teachers should be paid a living wage from day one. 

Is that really such a novel idea? I’m most assuredly not the first person to suggest this…

We put money into things we value: sports, entertainment, the food industry. Then, when our waiters can’t calculate our bills, we complain. We curse the education system. The very system we put no attention, money, or concern into, until it fails us, personally.

Teachers are leaving the profession at a startling rate. In Nevada, there is such an extreme shortage of teachers that we are practically begging people off the streets to come teach our children. Not exactly off the streets, but we are welcoming unqualified people into a classroom of their own. A classroom they did not earn, like the rest of us.

When I was working towards my degree and teaching license, I had to complete 16 weeks of grueling student teaching. And, when I say, ‘grueling‘, I mean that I cried almost weekly (I am not a crier, so this was extreme for me). I could recognize the sound of my supervisor’s heels, five doors down, against the hallway floor, as she descended upon the classroom. The second I heard those “click-clicks”, I began sweating profusely, until my shirt was soaked, and she was long gone after ripping apart my lesson. I spent almost every waking minute writing lessons, preparing, and praying. It was the longest, hardest, unpaid 16-week work experience I have ever had. I felt like the stress, monitoring, being told I had to do my lesson planning again-because it wasn’t good enough, and feeling inadequate would never end. But, guess what? It did end, and I emerged a prepared, confident, take-charge teacher.

My school district, in order to entice classified employees into the classroom is offering a 3 week (I believe, paid) “mini” internship. They also have 3 years to complete necessary coursework, and unless this is just hearsay, they will be paid a sign on bonus, along with a starting salary higher than mine.

Full stop. I am still reeling from the sting from that slap in the face.

How can this be? How can unqualified individuals be welcomed to teach, in an already struggling state, with practically zero understanding of how to do their extremely important jobs? How can they make more than a teacher who has put in her due time? How can 3 weeks prepare you for the classroom?

Student teaching, the beautiful torture of student teaching, is a rite of passage. No one. No one should be handed their own classroom without completing the same amount of weeks with the same intensity and expectations. No one.

I am angry. Resentful. Bitter. 

This was news I did not need to hear after learning that I am on one of the few salary steps not getting a raise this year.

Our teacher shortage wouldn’t even exist had the teachers who fled been paid what they were worth. This wouldn’t be happening if teachers were paid for the long hours they put in. I’m no fortune teller, but I bet that if excellent teachers have left the field, the inexperienced, unprepared ones will too. 

Until teachers are fairly compensated, the festering wounds in our education system will not heal. 

There will be at least one person who says, in response to this post, “You knew what you were getting into when you signed on the dotted line. Teaching is a calling, and if you can’t make it work, get out of the profession.” 

Or, something like that. 

To that, I will say the following:

  1. I will likely get out of the profession. Or, at the very least, spend thousands more on a masters degree, so I can work outside of the classroom and make more money. 
  2. Teaching is a calling. You know who else calls? Your landlord and bill collectors. 
  3. Teachers aren’t nuns, living in a convent. Do you think teachers who hear the “calling” live in magic, free teacher compounds?
  4. Get real. 
  5. I knew exactly what my pay was when I signed on the dotted line. Then the cost of living went up, but my salary didn’t. 
  6. Good day. 

In ending, nothing will change, in regards to teacher pay. No one wants to pay for something if they have to wait longer than standard shipping times for it to be delivered. Investing in the future isn’t as rewarding as investing in the salary of a football player who rapes his girlfriend. Amurica! 

When no one knows the difference between a country and a continent and everyone speaks and writes in text speak, maybe we will wish we paid to keep the good teachers. Maybe. 

Genius Theory

I don’t usually write about serious topics, but this has to be said written or I’ll burst. I think I’ve come across a genius theory. Let me first state my opinions about a few, somewhat, controversial subjects. I’ll just come out and be blunt about it. In fact, I’ll share my opinion on these myriad topics in a very easy to read, list format. 

  • I don’t want to see your boobies, even when you’re breast feeding
  • I don’t care what your political affiliation is
  • I don’t care if you’re gay, straight, or you make love to balloons 
  • I don’t enjoy seeing your vagina hanging out of your jean shorts, and frankly, I feel sorry for you, because you either need a mama, Jesus, or both
  • If 90% of your Instagram are selfies, you need to reevaluate your life
  • No one wants to read your blog/Facebook posts/Tweets because you don’t know the difference between to, too, and two 
  • It infuriates me that people like Kylie Jenner, Miley Cyrus, and Riff Raff are people our future looks up to
  • Your divorce, family drama, and fights with your friends don’t belong on social media 
  • It used to be rude to talk about your salary, it still should be
  • Public shaming used to be a way to deter people from being stupid, now whenever someone doesn’t like someone’s response to their behavior, they can just cry ‘shaming’ and it makes their stupidity OK

We have become a society of over-sharing, defensive pussies. Here comes my genius theory. Are you ready for it? Drum roll please…maybe, just maybe people wouldn’t be so apt to be offended by every little thing out there, if more people in our society had values, decorum, and half a brain to know when, where, and how certain topics should be shared. 

People complain all the time about others being too offended by things, but maybe saying that is just an excuse to be an asshole. 

Just the other day I witnessed an older lady being attacked on a news story’s comment section because she didn’t understand how to click the link to read the story. Some cretin actually cussed her out and told her to get off social media. I was offended by that because it used to be rude to treat your elders, anyone, like that. We have become complacent when it comes to being decent human beings to others, because it takes zero thought to send a “meaningless” message from your phone, while you sit in your parents’ basement, sitting on your non-existent high horse. 

Decent people are offended by offensive things. That doesn’t make us losers or wimps. It makes us human. 

As for the pussification of America-we are being offended by the wrong things. Someone called you fat? Boo hoo. Just the other day some elderly, foreign woman rubbed her belly, pointed to mine and asked, “Bebe?” Yeah, that sucked, but I got over it. Mean, obtuse, and/or clueless people are never going to go away, so instead of overemphasizing bullying, we need to teach our youth how to let things go, how to care more about how they feel about themselves, and how to just move on after someone’s been mean to them.

Instead of giving everyone an award just for participating, or accepting the outcries of “shaming”, when maybe we need to consider if the action deems being shamed, we should be offended by what really matters. 

These are things we should be offended by: 

  • Racism 
  • The trend that appearance is more valuable than character
  • Blatant ignorance 
  • Adults not being able to string a legible sentence together 
  • Sexism 
  • The lack of family values running rampant and how that correlates to almost everything wrong in our world 
  • Gory, disturbing, indecent images not suitable for young eyes and minds 
  • Wearing slippers in Walmart 

This is an abridged version, as I think these few points serves my theory well. Stop being an asshole, think before you hit ‘send’, and consider having more respect for yourself by not posting your bottom butt on social media. 

Good day. 

Testing the Waters-“Body Positivity”

Methinks I’ve made it pretty clear that I’m not skinny. I mean, my body size is in the name of my blog. If you’re shocked right now, you have not read one thing I’ve written. If you have read at least a few of my blog posts, you know I specialize in self-deprecation (no, not defecation-that’s an entirely different animal). I love making fun of myself. Calling myself names and poking fun at my body is how I take life not so seriously. No one wants to be the fat girl who cries about being fat. No.  

There are days I hate my body, days when I find 6,452 things wrong with my appearance. Some days, I check myself out in the mirror and say, “You look pretty alright. Alright, alright”. If I spent as much time as I do on worrying about when my next meal will be, on how I look, I would be a very miserable person. I look to my other strengths when my jeans fit a little too tight, or my new bra gives me back boobs. There has to be more to this life than how I look.   If I cared too much about my appearance, I would be one sad person, because I will definitely never be mistaken for Angelina Jolie. 

And that’s OK. We can’t all have huge breasts, a tiny waist, and Brad Pitt. Some of us look decent in black yoga pants and have even teeth. It isn’t fair, but who ever promised it would be? 

Now that I’ve stated my own personal attempt at “body positivity”, I have to give my opinion on the “Body Positive” movement. 

Wait for it…

I effing hate it. I’m so over it. It’s all about looks and that is not what is most important in life. On the other side, it is nice to feel good about yourself, but at what cost? 

I want to lose weight because I don’t feel healthy, my feet hurt, and yes, I want to look good naked. So, I don’t really appreciate Tess Holliday and all those other “Body Positive” representatives telling me, “It’s OK you’re fat. Don’t change who you are. Fat is beautiful”. No *holding up stop sign*. 

Please do not give me one more reason to not put down the cupcake and get off my ass. Do not. 

How many women really feel beautiful having unwanted fat? Come the fuck on. That’s not to say someone who is fat isn’t beautiful, or lacks worth because they don’t fit into society’s cookie cutter beauty terms. 

No. 

I’m not saying I am not worthy or not beautiful. What I am saying is I don’t feel beautiful when I can’t find tights for a costume, because “one size fits all” fits up to a size 8. No. And finding tights in the “fat section” doesn’t make me feel any better either. 

Thus, I’m practicing yoga and trying to be a healthier, more beautiful me. 

I have to share a comment on a post that Tess Holliday shared (Her social media posts are becoming more and more negative. Soon, she will just be another hater). This young man was positively attacked for his comment. He was not rude, he was not “fat shaming”, nor was he unreasonable. The pack of wolves who tore him down were vicious. The same women who don’t like people judging them. The same women who don’t like being bullied. 

  The above responses were some of the kinder ones. 

  
  
Just take a moment and let this marinate. 

I’m testing the waters with my opinion on this matter. I don’t want to scare away all of the beautiful people who read my blog, because this is a heated topic, and my opinion is the unpopular one. At the same time, I don’t want to stifle my desire to write about what I’m passionate about. 

So, I’ll just leave it at that, for now. Like just one bite of a cupcake, I’m leaving you with annoyance, dissatisfaction, and wanting. 

Build Your Blog Bullshit?

Hiyo. I have been stumbling upon quite a few gimmicky blogs that promise blog success and all the riches the world can afford-Scrooge McDuck style. Anyone find success with these? One of the blogs I stumbled upon was a How-to-Get-Paid-to-Write-a-Travel-Blog type. The man writing it could barely string together a sentence, yet he professed to make 6 figures with his blog. He also says he has a book deal thanks to his uber successful blog. To finish off a paragraph trying to convince his readers, he said, “Don’t take my word for it”. Really. You mean to tell me, all of your promises mean nothing? Thanks for wasting the 5 minutes it took to read your drivel, dick. Are you actually saying I should not trust you? So, that steep fee to get your program could be a scam? Is that what you are trying to say?

Usually if someone says, “Don’t take my word for it”, it is usually followed by an explanation as to why you can’t just take their word for it. Usually one says, “Don’t just take my word for it”. Hence, why you must buy into some gimmick they are selling. So, all I can surmise is this “super successful” blogger, promising you don’t have to sell out, is trying to get you to sell out by wasting your hard-earned money on his shady shit.

I am also about ready to unfollow a blogger who is begging his readers for money to keep his blog afloat. Excuse me?

How have you found success with your blog? Have you bought into any of these “gimmicks”? If you did (I won’t judge-promise), did you find your blog improved? How does one not sell out in this world, yet get their work “out there” for all to see?

The struggle continues.