I walked out of the classroom at the age of 26. I had only been teaching for four years and realized I had a change of heart. I was getting married, moving to New York and in the past, in order to pay for college, I had had so many jobs that I thought it would be good to continue to pursue one of those for a second career. Maybe continue auditioning? I loved doing voice-overs. Maybe continue working in the spa industry? That payed really well when I was student-teaching. Why not? My husband had a stable career that gave me the flexibility to re-evaluate. I am not afraid to tell you…I was tired of teaching.
I was teaching outside of Chicago in the Western Suburbs in a predominately Hispanic neighborhood making around $30,000 a year (that was the starting salary ten years ago in the suburbs). Perhaps all the running around to audition for t.v.commercials, creating theater with amazing women, shampooing heads at the salon, helping my dad start his business AND teaching middle school Language Arts and Reading to make ends meet became too much (heck, reading that was exhausting). But I had a lovely scenario in the classroom. I had no more than 20 students in each of my five classes, I taught what I liked and as a team with my colleagues. There was always pressure to “teach-to-the-test” but I compensated with bombarding the children with novels for homework. I also went in early in the mornings to do breakfast/cafeteria duty and stayed late coaching Poms. I even taught an ESL class to adults in the evenings. All those “extras” added up to me making those $30,000.
I had the occasional knuckle-head parent [Read more...]