Concerns of Public Education: J = Job Placement

My last perk of public education that I discussed was the feeling that I have job security. While I do feel that my profession will be in demand for years to come, today I will introduce a concern along the same topic. Today’s concern for public education is J for job placement.

While teachers in good standing with tenure are most guaranteed jobs, the grade placement or location is not a guarantee. A principal can move a teacher to any room and any grade within the school without considering the teacher’s wishes or seniority on the job.

My school presently has four kindergarten classes. During this year’s kindergarten pre-registration, we only registered enough children to have three very full classes for next school year. That means that unless about ten or more children register for kindergarten we will only need three kindergarten teachers instead of four. One of our current kindergarten teachers will be moving to a different grade level. Now this is not a major concern for my school. One of our kindergarten teachers has volunteered and is willing to move to second grade next year. However had she not had the desire to move, the principal would have to choose one of us to move.

Moving grade levels is always a concern for new teachers. Although a principal does not have to honor seniority, most principals move the newest addition to the faculty. Therefore, student numbers mean a lot to new educators.

Looking on the other end of job placement, some teachers are worrying in the opposite direction. While there are teachers that worry about keeping their current positions, some veteran teachers are concerned about getting out of their current placement. It is often hard for some teachers to be allowed to change grade levels or schools, especially if they are good and highly qualified at their current job.

Before moving to my new school of two years, I was asked to move to seventh grade at my previous school. This was not a desire of mine considering I had just gotten out of four years eighth grade and moved to first grade for one year. However, because I am highly qualified in middle school math and science, I was the principal’s choice for the job. Therefore, I chose to change schools in order to remain in the lower grade levels.

Teachers

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