Today was a day.


Yesterday was a day. I’ve missed my first Challenge blog in at least 5 years and I had some tough conversations with students.

Yesterday, I told my students I would not be in their school next year.


Yup. Over the weekend, many conversations were had, many texts and messages sent, and many, MANY thoughts were processed about this potential move. Now, I can’t say too much just because so many people in my area read this blog (again, a total shocker in my book), but know, it wasn’t a decision I took lightly. The last time I made a decision like this was when I took the job where I currently am, leaving a really good district in Missouri in 1999.


Hush. That decision brought us up here, having another child, moving to the country, and a whole bunch of other stuff too.

So yesterday, I told my students that I would not have them in class after this year.

One student looked me dead in the eye and ask, “Are you messing with us again??”


Yes, I’ve been known to keep a straight face while making something totally outlandish about lunch or the bus or something going in another room. The kids can’t read it and it’s awesome! But today, it was the truth. I’ll be a sixth-grade teacher in a new school, along with being a middle school basketball coach. Now, you might be thinking, don’t I do that already? I do, but I also have three sections of technology a day, a homeroom, and a WIN (what I need) time. That’s a lot of kids I see on a daily basis.

The new job won’t have near as many kids. They have really awesome technology. They paid me close enough to the salary I’m making to make that point moot.

But today wasn’t about me. It was about making sure my students knew it wasn’t about them. They’ve heard me us the phrase “I love what I do and I do what I love” too many times to doubt it. And I do love what I do. I cannot imagine a life without being a teacher. And I was sure that when we moved, this was the school I was going to retire from as well. That’s changed (obviously), but not my love for teaching. I let my students know they were the hold-up for me staying there. I love my classes: 6th, 7th, and even 8th grades. They fill my soul so many times I cannot even begin to out. I had one student say I wasn’t going to be able to coach their team (7th grade). Nope, I’m going to miss out on a really talented group. That was tipping the scale too.

But in the end, it wasn’t enough for me to stay. But they needed to know that I will miss them. They’ve brought me joy and anger, laughter and tears, but in the end, just being kids and feeling comfortable enough to do so around me makes my heart happy.

They asked a BUNCH of questions, several I’d not even thought about, but good questions all the same. A few had tears, which I said was ok.

In the end, I asked them to remember this, that someday, they’ll need to make a decision like this, one that’s so hard to do, but in the end, will be good for them.

This was a heartbreaking decision, but one that needed to be made, so I could be happy again.