In this episode, Bethany, a teacher of 25 years from Georgia, shares her journey in education that has included a lot of changes along the way. She shares with us a moment that she had to advocate for herself to higher admin and how right now she feels that she has a choice to make about her career.
Bethany admits that her first few years of teaching were in a very sheltered and coddled environment. After moving to a new state, she was shocked by the situations her students were finding themselves, the expectations from the State, and the lack of support from her principal.
She eventually went for help above her principal and was moved to another school with a very nurturing administrator.
After moving back and forth another time, because her husband is in the military, she has now been at the same school for 17 years. She has seen a huge change in the level of involvement from parents.
Bethany encourages administrators not to blanket their expectations over all teachers. Some teachers need that support, but others do not. She feels disrespected as a professional. She pleads to administration to let her teach and do the job that she has a Master’s Degree in and has actually been recognized for her teaching skills in her District.
She has great friends who she is active with outside of school and they have encouraged her to move to another district with them. However, she has noticed that they are having the same issues with being told what to do, when to do it, how to do it, and how to grade it.
Bethany has made efforts to advocate for herself and to find change for herself within her building, however, has felt ‘passed over’ a few times. She feels that she may need to leave the profession in order to take control over her feelings of burnout. She acknowledges that, because of the stress, she needs to decide whether or not she will stay in the classroom for her final five years.