Today was our first day with students and it went remarkably smoothly. Of course, students are always on their best behavior and we'll have a honeymoon period of up to a week, but I'm not necessarily talking about students here. None of my classes is "over", meaning too many students put in classes. Contractually, we can have as many students in class as is needed for the first 4 weeks of school, by which time our counseling department "level" the classes and make sure all of us are under our contractual limits. That so many teachers are already at or under these limits means there will be much less shuffling of individual students and entire classes over the next 4 weeks, and that's good for all of us.
I have one class of dual-enrolled students; they're my high school students but are also enrolled in a class at the local community college. My district math people and I had one vision of what a dual-enrollment class should look like, and the community college people have an entirely different vision, and I don't like their vision at all. It reduces me almost to a babysitter, and I'm a teacher. It's crazy to say this, and plenty of people tell me I should just accept this cushy setup, but I'm not really expected to teach or even tutor this class. It's actually a waste of my time as a teacher. The school could put in anyone to babysit this class and give me a class where I could actually teach. We'll see what happens.
I also have a student teacher. Eventually she will take over one of my classes as well as a different class for another teacher. That other teacher...was my student teacher maybe 5 years ago!
Our quirky school schedule has really been pared down this year, and I for one am elated. A couple other peculiarities have been corrected to great acclaim by the staff. For example, since time immemorial our Back To School Night has been on a Wednesday; we'd have a minimum day on Wednesday and return to school in the evening to meet with the parents, followed by a Thursday with a staff meeting after school. This year our Back To School Night will be on Thursday, the staff meeting will be the following week, and we'll get a minimum day on Friday. It sounds like such a small thing but it made a lot of people happy at no cost, so I say call it a victory!
Should I start counting down? I think I have 904 teaching days remaining in my career.