Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Open to the Public

A warm wet wind blows in off the rice paddies, across my desk, and back out toward the dark clouds that hover over the distant mountains.  Outside my office Taylor Swift and Bigbang ring out from the flat screen TV while two boys cleaning the room have a dance party.  In twenty minutes I will teach my first class of the day, then take a rest before teaching my last class of the day.  At 4:30 I will say goodbye to my co-workers, hop on my motorcycle and go for a lazy ride home through farms and along a winding river.

This is my new life as a newly minted public school teacher after over four years of teaching at private acedemies.  It's taken a little while for me to get my sea-legs after the non-stop teaching I did before. For the first week I could barely stay awake, the start and stop pacing was not what I was used to, and it felt like I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.  How can I possibly be paid this much money to do a quarter of the work? When is the first parent going to call the school because I wasn't sending home enough homework? However, after a week I have realized this is all really as good as it seems.  I guess having experience at something is finally paying off.

These days I teach about ten classes a week and assist with another ten, previously I planned and taught thirty-five classes each week on my own while also managing the academies teaching schedules, new teacher training, etc.  Please understand, I am not complaining about my old job. I miss my old job.  My students spoke amazing English and could write thoughtful stories.  They made me laugh and sometimes cry.  I love my former coworkers, my boss, the freedom I had to teach.

However, sometimes you have to let go of the things you love because they need someone other than you to be the best they can be.  Stepping aside gracefully is the right thing to do at a time like that.  Hopefully I succeeded.

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