Wednesday, August 20, 2008

How would *you* say goodbye to your students?

I'm leaving the school district I taught in for two and a half years, suddenly. It sucks, but it's PA's Educational Law, that dictates that I had to get 24 post-graduate credits to enable me to continue teaching with my certificate. So, everything was last minute, because I was desperately trying to find a way to stay.
Instead, I was forced to resign suddenly, leaving staff, and more importantly, students, wondering what happened.
Because of the Facebook group for the orchestra, I have many students asking what happened, so I decided to write them a letter. I had to resign via letter, so this is my Resignation Letter to the Students (linked to Google Docs). I debated whether or not it was appropriate, had a few friends proofread it, and finally decided, it was necessary. Frankly, I don't care about the PA Dept of Ed, the district's administration, or how they're going to fill my vacant position. The only thing I care about, are the students, their parents, and making sure they still work regardless of who's there encouraging them to practice, learn, and love music.
Keepin' it short. If you have thoughts, or questions...well, you know.


  1. I'm happy for you that you "don't care" about the PA department of Education. However, as a music teacher with a master's degree and a valid teaching licence, may I point out that you knew from the time you received your PA licensure that you had a certain number of things to do in order to renew that licence and continue teaching. I'm glad that you care about the students, but you apparently didn't care enough to take those graduate classes and stay current on your certification. That's one of the responsibilities of a teacher. If you would have spent less time on blogs, second life, and what not, you may have found time to take some credits and not lose your job. You are going to have a miserable time finding another teaching job in PA, possibly in other states as well. My state accepted my PA licence (which is still current, by the way) because it was valid. You have just resigned yourself to private school teaching for the rest of your life - where the benefits and pay are miserable and there is no teachers' union. Smart career decision. Frankly, I'm glad you are no longer teaching music education. It gives those of us who take the time to complete graduate courses, do National Board Certifications, and, in general, make ourselves better teachers a chance to really make music education important in our childrens' educations.

  2. Thank you for your comment, but I take offense to a personal attack by an "anonymous" commenter, without fulling knowing a person's situation. In my 6 years of being certified, I have taught in 15 different school buildings in two separate districts (most of it without ANY sort of tuition reimbursement). I've been married (a normal thing for someone in their mid-twenties), and divorced (not so normal). In those 6 years, I have moved 5 times.
    I have not resigned myself to anything, and bettering myself is only a small part of a successful education system.