Life Was Easy
I remember when life was easy.
Seven to three. June, July, and August… aaaaaahhhh. Interacting with the kids - day in and day out - and no matter how bad it was one day, the kids would always return the next.
Life Was Hard
But then again, no matter how great it went one day, the kids would always come back the next (expecting bigger, better, and now!).
No, life as a teacher certainly wasn’t all bliss. I remember the inter-departmental politics, training bodily functions to react to the rhythm of school bells, scrimping from paycheck to paycheck, and trying to reach those kids that cared for neither me nor themselves. I remember parents that were never satisfied, apples that didn’t fall too far from the tree, and frustrations with the expectation that I was to serve as the surrogate parent of my students.
(I Assumed That) Some Had It Easier
I also remember how great other members of our school and district community seemed to have it.
I mean, really.
Wasn’t it true that:
- Principals had the cushiest job in the world! No bells, no classes, no problem!
- District personnel were the definition of "out of touch." Clearly, they neither understood what life is like in the schools nor did they really care!
- Without question, the easiest job in all of public education was definitely that of the District administrator. Ivory tower, dictates from on high, and wow were they ever clue-less!
- Life would be easy if I could only get a gig. like. that!
But I Was Wrong (Really Wrong)
Four years ago this week, I accepted a position as a district-level technology specialist. Last year, I jumped in to administration.
I now serve as the Director of Technology Services in the Canyons School District, and it’s been a much more difficult job than I ever could have imagined. Every day is non-stop, issues thrown my way are almost always complex, and there honestly is no seven-to-three, June, July or August. (For that matter, summer is our busiest time of the year!) I wake up in the middle of the night only to worry about some member of my staff; and until now, I never fully understood just how much every member of my team – for better or for worse – truly represents me as they interact with others.
Yes, being an administrator has taught me patience and humility (of all things), the importance of team, and the value of hard work, loyalty, trust, and experience. It's also taught me that where much is given, much is required. Ultimately, it's taught me about myself, my weaknesses, and ofttimes has pushed me near the edge of my limits.
Oh, how I dread those limits.
I’m so thankful for the opportunity I’ve been given to serve the students, teachers, and administrators in our District. I'm thankful for how much I've been able to learn and to grow; and when I say that I’m grateful for the trust, patience, loyalty, and hard work that those on my staff have demonstrated, I mean it.
I mean, really.
Image source: Flickr user Lady-bug.