So administration. I must say, I raise my hands to people in admin - principals, vice principals, secretaries, regional principals, special education coordinators, all of the FNSA/FNESC team - it is an extremely challenging and difficult job. You have to be ready for the unexpected, prepared for whatever comes your way. Much like teachers, however instead of dealing with only five year olds, the age range is limitless. Something which I thought I was prepared for. I am a people person, a social butterfly if you will, and I genuinely enjoy communicating and interacting with the public. In high school I got the Miss Congeniality Award and the Most Talkative Award - something back then I was freakishly proud of. Not so significant now, ha! However, I was not prepared for the different personalities you open yourself up to in a job like this. I am so used to working with five and six year olds who love me. If I have learned anything from the last three months, it is just that. This role has made me appreciate my students that much more. I adore my little ones. I love their spirit, passion for learning and their innocent character. Everything we do in this line of work is to help ignite passion, create, shelter and prepare these innocent characters for some of the joys and hardships that the world will throw at them. We want to keep them little forever, and completely safe from harm. We want them to truly, deeply, believe in the fact that the world is theirs - they can do whatever they want to do, if they work hard and believe in themselves. We want to shelter them from the negative, toxic people and situations that could potentially cause harm to their identities or feelings. We want them to be prepared, to develop positive work habits at an early age that will help them to be successful at any age throughout their lives.
All that said, we both want that. Principals, teachers, education assistants, all of us. We want to help. It is in our blood. I recently was told, "I'm trying too hard to help people." At first I was pretty upset, after all, this person was trying to cause harm to my reputation, and trying to hurt me. Then I thought about it - I'm trying to hard to help others? Is that really a fault? If that is the worst that someone can say about me, I think I am doing a pretty gosh darn good job. It takes a special type of person to work with kids, some days I don't think I'm up for it. My patience isn't always there, or I might be struggling to find alternative ways to teach a concept...but, at the end of the day- I want to help. I want to make peoples lives better. I want them to have every opportunity in the world to be successful, whatever 'successful' may mean to them. I want them to be happy. So as I was saying, it takes a special kind of person to teach. That said, it takes an equally special kind of person to lead and guide a school. It takes someone who has a giant heart, a kind soul, and the ability to see three steps ahead, planning appropriately for any and all situations. I'm not claiming to be these things, but I aspire to be. I have learned so much from my mentor, former principal, and friend RC that I want to believe I am ready for this. I want to believe that I have encompassed his teachings combining them with my beliefs and practice to prepare me for the next the next three months. He has shown me what it means to be committed, giving your everything for a cause, and to never give up on the kids (even if some parents may want you to throw in the towel). Kids are kids. They deserve the best from us, all of us, all the time. They cannot control who they are born with as parents, just like they cannot control what socioeconomic class or race they are born into. So, we do everything in our power to help, to give children the chance to be children. To pause their games on their iPads and to play. To learn fearlessly. To take chances. All of it.
The countless lessons I have learned in the last three months have given me a new out look on education. One thing stays true - true as a teacher, true as an 'acting principal', true as a human - appreciation goes a long way. I appreciate my little ones and their minds. I appreciate the opportunity to learn from them daily. I appreciate this crazy, beautiful journey in this crazy, beautiful life.
All my Love,