Friday, January 27, 2006

Sounds good. Could I handle it?

A week or two ago, I was making a photocopy in the school library when I noticed a secretary walk by with a plate of food. I asked her where she got it, and she vaguely said, "The book club meeting." Retracing her steps, I found the remnants of a meeting in a conference room. What I found was eggs, sausage, hashed browns--in warming trays--name brand coffee, pastries, all mostly gone. Since nobody was in the room, I made myself a plate.

The more I thought about it, the angrier I got. During the middle of the day, while all of us teachers are working, the administrators are having a book club meeting--catered, no less. The food was no Lunch Lady Doris crap--this appeared to be from a restaurant. Sure, we have been fed a few times before a staff meeting: a cinnamon roll or this egg/sausage/government-cheese combo that any health-conscious person would never eat. I understand that it would be cost-prohibitive to fee all of us teachers this way. Nevertheless, I was jealous. Those administrators seem to have the life of Reilly. But could I do what they do? I doubt it.

It brings to mind this quote:

This is the situation in the public schools of America: The farther you travel from the classroom the greater your financial and professional rewards. Get the license, teach for two or three years. Take courses in administration, supervision, guidance, and with your new certificates you can move to an ofice with air-conditioning, private toilets, long lunches, secretaries. You won't have to struggle with large groups of pain-in-the-arse kids. Hide out in your office, and you won't even have to see the little buggers.

Frank McCourt, Teacher Man

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