Raising Students and My Kid.


Being a school administrator isn’t easy.

From the kindergarten student who cries for no apparent reason to the odd smell emanating from the boys’ locker room, each day brings new and sometimes gross challenges (on behalf of the 1980’s, I want to say we don’t use the word “gross” often enough anymore).

Now, I’m not complaining (maybe a little about that smell…), because I realize every profession has its ups and down.

I was reading online (so you know it’s true) that only 45% of people are satisfied with their jobs.  That’s down from 61% in 1987.Fork

I don’t know if I believe this or not.

What I do believe is 55% of people (at least) like to complain.

About their jobs.

And bosses.

And paychecks.

And lack of benefits.

And everything else in their lives.

I think this is human nature.

Me?  I like having a job.  Any job.

I prefer ones that pay well, but I’ve also enjoyed my jobs that didn’t.

I would definitely count myself in the group of 45% who are satisfied.

But I do have one complaint.

There’s not always enough time to do my job at school, my job at home, and accomplish other things.

This week I had a choice.  Help build a school in the Dominican Republic or coach the Evil Spawn’s basketball team.

Seems like an easy choice.

Build the school.  Make the world a better place.

It’s a no brainer.

Especially if you’ve seen the Evil Spawn miss a layup (she’s killing me!).

Except for the fact I always wonder if I’m spending too much time helping raise other people’s kids and not enough time on my own.

I’m guessing if you ask the evil one, she would say  a break from me would be a wonderful thing (in fact, she’s mentioned this a time or two… or 957).

But I still wonder, so I passed on the construction project (I hope I get another chance).

The building a school/basketball games is an extreme example, but I think all educators are faced with similar decisions on a daily basis.

How do you balance raising your kid and still be totally committed to helping other people raise theirs?

Maybe I shouldn’t worry about this.  Maybe I should focus on what I can control.  Like that smell.  It’s a combination of feet, old yogurt, and cat food.  It’s really quite disturbing.

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Eduspeak Gives Me a Headache.


I'm Carl.  My Head Hurts.

I’m starting to think our sole purpose as educators is to confuse the rest of the world.  

We spend way too much time speaking in initials.

No one… and I mean no one… has any idea what we are talking about.

Below I’ve listed 25 educational acronyms. 

If you know more than 15, you definitely work in education.

If you know more than 20, you are school administrator material.

If you can translate all 25 (and sadly, I can), you are a gigantic dork who needs a hobby.

Answers are at the bottom. 

Don’t cheat.  I’m watching you (as is Buddy the Dog’s crazy Uncle Carl… he’s the handsome devil above).

1.  AASA

2.  ACT

3.  CPS

4.  IDEA

5.  OPMA

6.  GPA

7.  NEA

8.  ASBO

9.  TRS

10.  FICA

11.  AFT

12.  IEP

13.  NAESP

14.  SAT

15.  NSBA

16.  AESD

17.  NCLB

18.  ASCD

19.  GED

20.  ASFSA

21.  RTI

22.  NREA

23.  NASSP

24.  EEOC

25.  SAT

Bonus:  CYA

Answers:  1. American Association of School Administrators  2. American College Test  3. Child Protective Services  4. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act  5. Open Public Meetings Act  6. Grade Point Average  7. National Education Association  8. Association of School Business Officials  9. Teachers’ Retirement System  10. Federal Insurance Contributions Act  11. American Federation of Teachers  12. Individualized Educational Program  13. National Association of Elementary School Principals  14. Scholastic Assessment Test  15.  National School Boards Association  16. Association of Educational Service Districts  17. No Child Left Behind  18. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development  19. General Education Development Tests (or Certificates)  20. American School Food Service Association  21. Response to Intervention  22. National Rural Education Association  23. National Association of Secondary School Principals  24. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission  25. Scholastic Aptitude Test  Bonus: Cover Your A**

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I Don’t Hate School, I Just Love Summer.


Everywhere I go (work, home, work, home, work, home… rinse, lather, repeat), people ask me if I’m ready for school to start.

Turns out there is such a thing as a stupid question.

No, I’m not ready.Who Doesn't Love Summer?

What I’m ready for is summer to last forever.

Forever. Which I understand is a very long time.

Who doesn’t love summer? Especially if you work at a school.

The warm weather, time to golf, vacations, wearing shorts to “work”, mowing (okay, bad example… at least after the first mow), and best of all… a monthly paycheck.

If you didn’t get this, let me say it (or type it) again.

They pay me… and I’m NOT working with the teachers or students.

Let’s all take a moment to comprehend this little nugget.

Pay, but no work (not “regular” work… still plenty to do).

Basically it’s stealing. Actually there is no basically about it.

It’s stealing.

Not with a gun, but with a Master’s Degree.

If you know teenagers who are undecided about what they want to do with their lives, I have a suggestion for them.

They want to be…

… ME.

My work consists of being around kids (better than adults), going to games (better than a real job), and working shorter hours in the summer (it’s like I stopped aging at 12).

I’m living the dream.

This doesn’t mean everything about my job is perfect. Trust me, it isn’t.

But I do get to wear shorts in the summer (did I mention students and teachers are not around), so that makes up for a lot of the troubles during the school year.

I think as educators we do a terrible job at expressing what great jobs we have.

It’s easy for us to fall into complaint mode and point out the negatives of our profession.

The worst thing is we do this in front of our students.

We complain and complain until we have convinced the very best and brightest students that working in education is not something they should pursue.

Instead of promoting careers in teaching, we discourage them.

I am here to break the cycle.

Education is the best job ever. And I mean ever.

So this year, I think everyone should follow this rule: if you can’t say anything nice about education, don’t say anything at all (I just made that up).

To review… people ask me if I’m ready for the regular routine of school after 2 ½ months of working alone.

Answer. No.

Reason. I love summer.

But that doesn’t mean I don’t love my job during the school year.

It just means I love getting paid while wearing shorts a little better.

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While this site operates with the knowledge and awareness of the Tuscola CUSD #301 School Board, Tuscola, Illinois, the content and opinions posted here may or may not represent their views personally or collectively, nor does it attempt to represent the official viewpoint of Tuscola CUSD #301 administrators or employees.