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Good News and Bad News

WriterLady's picture
on November 6, 2007 - 8:46am

Ah, good news and bad news! Isn't it wonderful and terrible how those almost always go together? Kind of like the expression "Every cloud has a silver lining..."

Well, in my case, every silver lining also has a cloud!

As most of you who have been reading my journals know, I'm expecting a new little girl sometime around the Christmas/New Years holidays. Now, I don't mean to scare anyone - the good news and bad news don't directly have anything to do with the baby.

The good news is that my husband and I have officially saved up enough money that I can take eight weeks of leave instead of the original six we had been planning.

HURRAY! I was really hoping and praying we'd be able to do that, but since I receive only half pay while I am out for four weeks, then no pay after that, I wasn't at all sure we'd be able to afford it.

However, every silver lining does have a cloud, doesn't it? The bad news is that I now have to create lesson plans for eight weeks of leave rather than six. To those of you who are not teachers, this might not sound like much of a cloud...but to those of you who are teachers, you'll know what I mean when I tell you I have six different preps - in other words, instead of teaching one-two courses for several periods a day like most teachers, I teach a different course every single period. What it basically comes down to is that in order to take this amount of leave, I'm going to have to write almost 200 separate lesson plans, along with their supporting materials, tests, etc. This is not an exaggeration!

To make this even more difficult, the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (aka the TAKS), which is our version of the Big Scary Standardized Test, takes place at the very end of my leave - which means all of their instruction for the last eight weeks before the test is going to come from a substitute rather than myself. So, not only do I have to make what seems like a million plans...I have to make sure they are so good and detailed that my students will get all they need before they take this test. My sub is a good sub...but she is not a true teacher and hasn't been through the degree program and all the training, etc. I know she'll do what I ask her to do, and do it well, though, so that at least is a relief.

I'm really, really starting to stress over this...but then I think about eight glorious weeks with my new baby, and know it will be worth it.

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