Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Wipe Out

I have shared before that this has felt like the most challenging of work years.

I have been feeling run down physically, emotionally and spiritually the past few weeks and today I seem to be fighting the third cold I've had in the past two months (the wife and I seem to keep giving it back and forth to each other...)

Another sign of just how rundown I have gotten.

I'm in the middle of MOSL grading, I'm trying to get two classes ready for the ELA Regents exam (keeping them motivated even as the weather becomes more and more summerlike), I'm tutoring almost every day after school from now until the end of the year, I'm trying to create something compelling for my other three (non-Regents) classes while still hitting the monthly schoolwide expectations around Common Core - that's the stuff that's going on at work.

At home, there's a serious illness in my family that has just turned a bit worse. The wife and I are looking for some other place to live after five years in the current abode (which seems to have gotten smaller even as it has grown more expensive.)  And that means getting ready to hire some movers, pack and do all that kind of thing.

In between that stuff, there's the blog and the twitter all the other stuff that happens in the fight against ed deform, all of which would happen without me to be sure, but still, I feel the responsibility to try and do my part.

I'm feeling wiped out and while I'd say most years I start to feel this way about now, this year has been especially challenging with all the CCSS and APPR nonsense that has added so much extra in paperwork and compliance to my day.

And so, as I continue to work toward the end of the school year, I thought I would just let you know that the schedule of blogging I have tried to keep up at Perdido Street School blog is going to slow down just a bit.

I'll do another contract post to be sure (even though the last few seemed to mostly piss people off!) and some Cuomo stuff (especially if he makes any moves toward changing APPR before the end of the legislative) and the scandal stuff involving Christie and the GWB and Cuomo and Moreland (and maybe the GWB too) and if Kingsie or Merryl say anything stupid, I'm sure I'll have two cents to add about that.

But feeling rundown as I am, I think my body is letting me know that it is time to slow down, conserve some energy and take care of myself a bit, so that's just what I'm going to do.

I dunno what kind of academic year you've had or what's been going on in your own home life, but I hope you get to take care of yourself a bit this last month of work as well.

No matter what the corporatists think, we are human "beings," not human "doings," and sometimes it is important to just "be."

And so, with that, I'll think I'll just "be" for a while.


  1. I think we are all feeling it more than ever this year and I know in my case a lot of it is directly linked to APPR and CCSS. I have always been amazed at how you can balance teaching and posting often 5 times a day (I barely post once a month). You definitely have earned a break and I still look forward to any posts you do.

  2. Feel better RBE!

    We love you and all that you do for us in clarifying the issues!

    A Newark Teacher

  3. Feel better brother. You are read by many. I know I've spread your posts a great deal over the past years. I too am burnt out from this past year and by that I do not mean just "tired". This year like no other has effected me mentally, emotionally and physically. Be well!

  4. Family first. You're information and advice is greatly appreciated. Take a break. Nothing comes before family!

  5. Feel better. I love your blog.

  6. You are by far the most incisive blogger I read. Your information and perspective are outstanding. I can't imagine juggling your blogging, sometimes posting three or four times in one day, and managing all that you deal with as a teacher. I have to say, I'm retired almost three years, and just reading about all that must be done besides teaching obligations is exhausting. You are a prolific and very interesting writer, and you certainly deserve a break. The need is totally understandable. I hope you are able to rest, regroup, relax, and rejuvenate. I look forward to reading future posts.

  7. Thank you for everything you well and take care of yourself.

    One of many voices who wish you well...

    A proud public school teacher in New York City.

  8. You take care of yourself and do whatever you need to slow things down and take a big, healthy breath.

    Your blog is an intelligent, insightful daily addiction.

    Insight = perception and a deep understanding (just in case the Regents throws that word at our students again)

    Feel better.

  9. I hope you feel better. Your blog is excellent and I have truly enjoyed reading your articles.

  10. Thanks for the kind words.

    I think I'll try and keep it to one post a day for a while. We'll see how well that goes, since I often get the hankering to do more when stories pop up.

    Like this morning's story about Cuomo, Astorino and WFP...

    DOn the work side, dunno how I'm going to teach today, since I seem to have totally lost my voice.

  11. I echo the praise RBE. I check your blog numerous times a day to get your thoughts. And you have taken breaks before to recharge. One point on the run-down condition of so many teachers - that relates to what the contract should have addressed - the enormous and often wasted workload - and let's add that teachers working under bully principals have so much added stress. I know you called for a PR campaign if the contract were to be voted down. This post is part of a PR campaign - I bet teachers would not be so upset at the money issues if they at least got some sense of improved working conditions in the contract. I think that is the message to both the public and internally - every extra child you teach is another bit of stress - so reasonable class sizes and time to do your work - instead of more PD - is a key.
    And the major failure of the Unity Caucus leadership which has abandoned the classroom teacher.

  12. Your blog is exceptional. I have long pondered how you manage to post so many times a day. I understood the PR campaign piece and the others that take some flack. You raise the important, practical issues. You are truly a "reality-based educator." I'm guessing you do need to slow down a bit, but I'm also guessing you won't be able to go Cold Turkey for long, especially after you conquer the dreadful round of colds. Feel better.

  13. It's been a rough year, RBE. I've been reading this blog for years. I too appreciate what you do. You keep us informed and you're honest-- you're not afraid to take a controversial position and you're willing to take the heat for it. I hope you're feeling better soon.

  14. Rest up and come back when you can; we need you...

  15. Hang in there. Take care of yourself and your family. I'll be happy to read whatever you're able to right.

    1. Peter, I am in awe of the work you do. You write brilliant, inventive, original posts. I mostly repost news stories and react to them. Occasionally I try and write an original piece. But I am always amazed at how well you write and how often you write!

  16. RBE, Your Ed-Blog is the first Blog I read everyday (Your's and Diane Ravitch's). I want to thank you for fighting the fight! Trying to inform our mis-inform!! The school year is a marathon and we are coming to the end of this yr's race! Rest up, Take care and thank you for all that you do!

    Former Unity Member, District 5 Teacher!!

  17. I noticed that ...May 21, 2014 at 2:53 PM

    I am going over your wife's head and demand that you rest and take it easy. Blogging can wait. Your physical, mental, spirtual health come first. We in the blogosphere appreciate you immensely and want what's best for you.

    So don't make me say it again, my brother, rest, rest and then rest.

  18. What you are feeling is not isolated to NYC and NYS. I teach in Maryland and see the same here as go forward with SLOs and FFT etc.
    I went on a cruise at spring break and quite a number of people were teachers/educators. Heard the same from them, with the possible exception of VA teachers whose state isn't sucking on Duncan/Obama's federal RTTT teat. (One veep was Jersey told of having to do 30 + full FFT evals - she reads Jersey Jazzman)

    Our union, who led the state NEA affiliates in signing onto the RTTT application, said a month ago that "labor and management" have come to realize that the promises they made to MSDE in 2010 for the RTTT have become difficult. No sh*t, Sherlock.
    Rest up during your 3 months off (sarcasm alert).

  19. Take care of yourself RBE. I've been there. Sometimes you just need to take a step back. Let some of the other bloggers do the heavy lifting. The deformers will still be here when you come back! Use the time to count all that cash Mikey got you, lol.

  20. Thanks for the kind words everybody. I'm going to try and keep it to a post a day for the short term - we'll see how that goes. But after a couple of days of that, I have a feeling I'll be hankering for more.