So, this is it...the final countdown. In a mere twelve hours I will be standing in my classroom in front of twenty seven new faces as unhappy as I am to end their summer and begin the rigor of a new school year.
Oh, don't get me wrong. I enjoy my job and once the school year gets going I will be fine. It's the transition from bathing suits, flip flops and days at the pool to "real" clothes, "real shoes" and days in a windowless classroom that always gets me. Luckily, I have two giant goldfish who are anxiously awaiting new faces to drop food in their tank. I am unnaturally attached to my goldfish. They have names and personalities and I talk to them like they are going to talk back to me. I have missed them and I hope they help with my transition.. Hey, don't judge...I don't have any windows in my room, I have to have something to look at during the day!
Many people have told me that last school year was one if the toughest ever with new evaluation procedures, dwindling budgets and paychecks and lack of support for education from those in office. I couldn't agree more. Last year was a tough one and I was absolutely and completely emotionally drained and physically exhausted.
This year is going to be better. I insist that it will be better! My goldfish agree. They told me so...
Tonight, on the eve of a brand new school year, I would like to wish all of my colleagues well in the new year. May your and your students' successes far outweigh the pressures of intensive evaluation procedures. I pray that you stay safe, that lockdown drills remain drills and the police never have to visit your classroom in search of one of your students...or anyone else. May the air conditioning and later the heat system work the way it should and may all your lessons turn out as fabulous as you envision them. Most of all, may this year be your best ever.
This calling you have answered is as noble as they come. The lives you touch will be too numerous to count and the blessings you will receive by giving of yourself in ways that only you know how will be eternal. You will give 110% each and every day, even when you have nothing left to give. You will invest your time, your money and your emotions into everything you do and will go largely unrecognized. You may not see it now but your efforts will not be in vain. Just be sure to take care of yourself along the way, your students really do depend on you and need you, no matter what anyone says.
To those of you I have had the pleasure and the honor of working with over the years, I know how much you give of yourself to your students. I have seen your hearts break and your spirits waver just as much as I have seen you open yourself and your pocketbook to a student or a teacher in need in a time when everyone seems to be in need anymore. It is because of each and every one of you that I go back year after year knowing that together we do make a difference.
May your year be once of peace and may your classes be easy to manage.