And the money is bad. And I admit I got in the profession in part because I thought being a professor would bring respect. And in most cases you know that's not the case.
I'm afraid of quitting. I'm a goddamned History professor. I've only had one other job in my life; I worked fast food as an asst. manager.
I'm married and have 2 kids. My husband makes okay money, but our salaries together keep us afloat. What am I supposed to do?
Kelly on the Edge
maybe a job at a private high school. one that accepts more academically advanced students.ReplyDelete
you can write and research. start looking for jobs where those are the required skills.
Private high school teaching can be a very satisfying route if you really like teaching, enjoy being around kids, and are ok with doing a lot of extra stuff (chaperoning, supervising clubs, advising, etc). The salaries are lower than in public schools, and if research is your passion, you need to understand that you just won't have time for it. Yes, you get small class sizes and a lighter teaching load in private schools, but that's because they expect a lot of you in other areas.Delete
I've been a private high school teacher for 15 years now and I love it for the great colleagues, bright students, and academic autonomy (except in my F*****G AP classes, which I F*****G hate. If I ever get a terminal illness, the last thing I'll do before I die will be to BURN DOWN the College Board headquarters, which I imagine to be located inside a volcano on a remote island).
Feel free to have the mods put us in touch if you'd like: I can point you to some resources to help you start a search if you decide to go that route.
Surly, I assume that last para was for Kelly. I like my job as a proffie. It's a nice offer though...Delete
Yes, sorry--I meant that for Kelly!!Delete
Surly Temple: I'm curious about the AP thing. I was under the impression that a lot of teachers considered AP their one challenging, interesting class, which is one of the reasons why college departments have been so reluctant to admit that AP test passing students just aren't up to the standard they should be for actual college credit...Delete
JD, I wound up and took a big, fat swing at AP history here. It's a pretty thorough, albeit insufferable, compendium of all of my grievances with the program:Delete
Again, though, I teach at a private school, so I'm free to make all of my classes challenging and interesting, because I've got mostly capable, motivated students. I would never quibble with a public school teacher who values the AP curriculum because the external exam requirements insure a level of seriousness and rigor that might not otherwise be available in more disadvantages schools or districts And I say that acknowledging that I don't agree with what the AP designates as "rigor." In the case of a weak school system, however, participating in the AP curriculum may help students clear some of the systemic hurdles blocking their path to higher education, and if it does, then more power to the teachers and students, though I don't see why everyone can't have access to a genuinely interesting and meaningful education.
ST, that was fascinating, thanks. Jibes a great deal with my experience with college-level World History and state mandates regarding transferability.Delete
It's tough in rural environments: the number of other opportunities where a phd isn't overqualified (and likely to be underpaid) are usually limited. And looking around in small communities... gets around. And departments often don't react well to that.ReplyDelete
Wish I had a magic bullet suggestion. Switch to administration? Writing center, or assessment, if you've got the background?
I just think it doesn't work anymore. There is zero rigor in my department as frightened contingent and tenure track faculty spoonfeed students for the gold bullion that is a good student evaluation.ReplyDelete
The same in my department. The customer is always right. And it begets grade inflation. The kids graduate thinking all they have to do to advance in their careers is show up and be nice and unicorns will come out of the sky.Delete
I would do almost anything to quit. I'm not brave enough, however. So I hate myself and the world several hours a day, and then escape through dance and booze on the weekends. It's not the life I imagined and I hate it.Delete
I might have long since given up on the idea of getting out. If I were in my early 30s, though, I think I'd still consider it. At my age I'm closer to the end rather than the beginning, and honestly I don't have the ambition or energy.Delete
I do small things to make the job work for me, individual assignments within insanely pedantic outcomes-laden guidelines.
And I envy those who depart the profession ever now and again.
But not me.
I got a lot of people like Kelly in my office. I counsel some to get out and others to stay in. But it has to really come from the professor or instructor. If your heart is not in, I don't want you at my college anyway.ReplyDelete
But in lots of cases faculty are just exhausted with the way we're currently being forced to do things. That's something that can be addressed and managed, if not changed wholesale.
I feel poorly for folks like Kelly, but if you don't think you're getting enough respect, well, that's on you, not on anyone else.
Oh, nothing warms the heart like an admin going on about "commitment" and "respect"Delete
I guest we're just supposed to bend over and take it like the bitches we're perceived to be.Delete
Sorry, but that language is unacceptable.Delete