Education

Extended Absences

image from flickr user COG LOG LAB

Four months without a post.  Even writing it pains me.  Several authors (whose opinions matter to me) have suggested that “real bloggers” must post on a weekly to daily schedule.  Once, that may have been feasible for me, but the demands of my full-time teaching, my writing over at TeachHUB, and my family now make it impossible.  It seems ridiculous to me that as recently as six weeks ago I was making plans to start up a new website.

In the last few months, many aspects of my professional life have changed–mostly for the better.  In the space of two weeks, I met Alan Alda (at an exclusive press event for his upcoming PBS documentary “The Human Spark”) and was invited to join a district advisory council of teachers.  Later, I found myself in the office of my principal pitching a new position for next year that would focus on integrating technology into lesson plans all over the school.

My stock was soaring, and it still is.  But, the catch is that all of this has left me with some very big decisions to make:

  • Do I stay in the science classroom and work on improving my practice (differentiation, formative assessment, building a functional PLC) or do I push hard for this Technology Facilitator position with fewer headaches and smaller paychecks?
  • Should I use the occasion of a departing principal to jump ship and try out a new school or stay and reboot my reputation with a new school leader?
  • Is it better for me to stay in the classroom or to actively pursue a district-level position that extends my influence?

I have never been comfortable with change in my personal life.  Eleven years ago, I turned down a Fulbright fellowship to start graduate school mainly because I was scared of traveling away from the things that I knew.  I have stayed at my school (where my career began) through some pretty dark times because it’s still safer than the unknown.

But, on the other hand, who can say whether my career (and my life) will benefit more from building a legacy at one school, teaching siblings and developing relationships with community leaders, than taking my skills and personality to a new place and exploring the natural diversity of a huge school system?  In conversations with several more seasoned educators, the suggestions were split, leaving me to seek out my answers in my own way.

Suffice it to say, however, that Scripted Spontaneity will live on.  I hope to post more regularly about less serious topics and rebuild the community that once was.  Because everyone needs a place for their voice to be heard.

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