Last day.

Last day of possibly the most draining year of a 26-year career.

Between the political nonsense of vouchers, no teaching of topics that might make someone feel uncomfortable, critical race theory, lack of funding, and the public turning on the “heroes” of the pandemic, it’s been a year for sure.

But there are those roses found in the manure:

  1. I’m getting a better feel for the tech classes I’m teaching. I’ve got a plan for the 7th and 8th grades for the following year. The problem is I’m “picking up (as if I had a choice) a 6th-grade tech class next year as well which throws that plan into disarray. Who needs a break when you have this stuff going on? It’s fine. It’s all fine. 🙂
  2. I reached that 100-win point with my basketball team and my wife caught me off guard with a celebration at the end of the season. It was a season that we started out like crap, then just started clicking. Our travel team was the right mix of girls who wanted to play hard and without some negative influences, we learned we could play with just about anyone.
  3. I had one of my all-time favorite homerooms, and that saying something because I’ve had great homerooms! We were a bunch of technology, music, and gaming nerds who happened to like sports too. We had students selected to honor choirs and honor bands, who are great actors, and who will be positive influences in the middle school for the two years.
  4. I had dear friends retire last year, and this year was a bit of mourning for me. They were educators that I had 20+ years of laughter, tears, anger, and just teachery kinds of things. It’s hard when those kind of people are gone from your life and the transition here was hard too. However, I loved working with the team that I had. We’ve splintered a bit because of our financial situation in our district, but our team cared about our students and it showed.

As we watched the kids walk out today, it was again bittersweet. We’d been battling about just being good humans, and a small group wanted nothing to do with it. However, on the way out, they are all “oh we’ll miss you” and blah, blah, blah. It’s just hard to put those together.

I will miss the 8th graders because they were our Covid class. They are a handful, no doubt, but they also have some dynamic personalities. I worry about them because they are an in your face group. The 7th graders were a difficult class. Part of that is Covid and part of it is post-Covid. And the 6th graders, my hope is that they don’t turn too obnoioux like most 7th graders do. Side note: why is 7th grade such a hard year? They just become purple minions.

After that, I got nothing. I’m tired and about as drained as I’ve ever felt. First thing, start recharging batteries. Reading, bare feet in the garden, and sleep are all on the docket. My niece’s graduation party is next Monday and we’ll see family there. Then, the summer is a big question mark, but there are options.

It’s just a matter of what we want, what we need, and how far we want to go.

If you are educator, please, take care of yourself. It’s been a hell of a year. Take the time you need to be well in the fall.