Written by Amelia
Immediately after officially resigning from my job, my thought process went something like this:
HowdoIfeel? HowdoIfeel? HowdoIfeel? OHMYGOD…HowdoIfeel?
My internal answer was that I felt great and, against all logic, I felt safe. After teaching for seven years at a private residential school whose children I love and in whose mission I believe, the decision to quit my job was about as easy as self-amputation.
Most of my reasons for leaving have to do with the the fact that every school year I feel more and more like a standardized test zombie infecting all of my students with a mind-numbing virus that makes them stop asking “Why?” and “How?” and start asking, “So, is the right answer B or D?” and “Am I basic or proficient?”
That feeling of post-resignation safety caught me seriously off guard. Until that moment, I hadn’t truly realized how anxious I was, how tightly clenched my jaw was, and how furrowed my brow had been. For years. My blood pressure went from 150/110 to 118/70. Literally.
If my ninth graders come to my class not knowing how to read and leave a year later in the same state, I have wasted a year that they desperately need. That’s a heavy thing for one person to carry around. And now, although I feel disloyal to my students, I don’t have to carry that around anymore.
I know I’ve made the right decision. What will I do now? I’ll get married a week after my last day of school, my mister and I will go on our honeymoon, then I’ll come back to “real life,” work on my Etsy shop, and get a part-time job. One that doesn’t involve any multiple choice questions where everyone is proficient.