The end of a school year is always bittersweet. You’re losing your current class, but there is the excitement of a planning for next year’s students. The class I had this year was one of my best. They were willing to join me on my journey and often acted as willing guinea pigs. (See Love Letter to My Class blog post). Their excitement in trying new things and ability to adapt to my whatever I wanted to try was impressive. Our school district gives parents to ability to have their students remain at the elementary level for 6th grade or move onto the middle school. Most of my students are choosing to stay which means I will still get to see them, but they will no longer be mine.
This year was also one of the hardest to end because of many staff changes coming up for the fall. We had two retirees (one of which has been a close friend and amazing teacher who I got to work with daily!), a teacher moving out of the area for her family and another teacher who is changing her teaching assignment to different program. (She will be staying at our school so we aren’t really losing her, but my interaction with her will be different.) We have also grown in population for the first time in many years and are able to add another classroom teacher. This means quite a few changes!
Over the last couple of years, the reputation of the school has done a 180. We are no longer the school you send “those kids” to. We are becoming in demand not just by parents and students, but teachers. What we thought would be one or two people wanting to transfer in has become quite a few. Having the ability to choose what is right for our students and staff makes a big difference in what next year will look like.
Two of the changes will be happening in the same grade level range I work in. I will be the only returning teacher. While I have had some anxiety over who will be joining me next year, I am trying to focus on what possibilities are now open to our school. As the school has become more technology and “do it differently” focused, having new teachers means we can totally change up how we have always done it. My role as teacher-leader is becoming more important. I will get a chance to shape my grade levels in a way I had never considered. The hope is that we will be a very strong team that is able to incorporate innovation with best practices.
We won’t know what next year will look like until we get there, but the more I consider the possibilities, the more excited I’m getting. Hopefully everyone who comes will be a good fit and the school (and students!) will grow in all the positive ways!
20+ year teacher, mother of 2 kids and 2 dogs, wife, lover of all things M&M, interested in tech in the classroom, and changing up my teaching