I have mixed emotions about this. Learning a new school culture is hard and I am not very good at it (ADHD and social cues, bad combo). On the other hand, I'm mostly cheerful, generally polite and very harmless, so my enormous pratfalls, inadvertent copier destruction, and so on will hopefully not doom me. I also had some other job opportunities, including some working in fancy schools and some that would be teacher coaching (since I've done it, I think I have experience sufficient enough to state authoritatively that coaching is seventy million times easier than teaching). I think I feel more nervous about whether or not I made the RIGHT CHOICE (although technically I could still make a DIFFERENT CHOICE, but that could lead to unparalleled mental confusion and anxiety so I would rather not, I think). Throughout the process of deciding to leave, which was months of consideration, I became pretty certain that staying at my site would be the WRONG CHOICE that would sooner than later lead to BURNOUT and GOING BACK TO GRAD SCHOOL OR SIMILAR.
I am not presently deeply saddened about leaving my current school site; what I feel right now is relief. My current class just mowed their way through the end of the year assessments and they are more than ready for first grade (more than half of my students are above grade level in reading and nearly all hit the benchmark; the only real difference to account for their performance is that their writing was better aligned with the reading). They were (are, for three more weeks) also the most difficult class I have ever had, full stop. While I could consult with site experts, this year I was absolutely stymied in receiving district support.
This was especially frustrating because
- I was asking for pretty minimal assistance;
- There was 100% agreement among professionals at my site that the services I sought were necessary;
- We are supposed to be doing inclusive practices, which is supposed to include serving kids BEFORE they need an IEP.
Anyway, I will have lots of time this summer to reflect on what made this class such a particular challenge, and to experience the five stages of grieving over leaving. Right now I am trying to enjoy the end of my time at my school with my class and colleagues while not freaking out about how much stuff I need to move out of my classroom.