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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Satisfaction: Musings of a Veteran Education Professional

Interestingly,  having stayed in the education field when all sorts of (more lucrative) professions presented themselves at different junctures has its own rewards. (After I was in a serious car accident in 1993, following the  long recovery period, I had planned to do a career turnaround--not exactly a change because I would have been still working with the English language--and become a technical writer for large companies. Well, I am still teaching with a heavy emphasis on guidance counseling......my original field.)

I have taught at several schools in my area, some belonging to the Ministry of Education and some belonging to other (private) organizations. In any case, they are all in the same main geographical area, even though their foci are different: some of the junior high and high schools are for achievement oriented academic types who will do many matriculation exams and most will succeed on  them , some are for high-intelligence low achievers with tough home lives whose very presence in school is  an achievement, some are rural schools with large catchment population areas who need to accept every student in their municipal region, special needs or not. And at elementary school level, I teach English to English Speakers in a non-English speaking country--kids who speak English at home with their parents and/or have returned from several years in an English-speaking country, often for one of their parents' jobs.

And very so often, I meet a former student and /or one of my kids' friends--there is overlap there--and I must say that I am flattered when they remember my name and tell me something I said  that still resonates with them, even four or five years after I said it when they were teenagers. For instance, from the borderline matriculation class at the high-intelligence, low achievers' high school: some of these kids are baggers and cashiers at the local supermarket to earn some pin money,  meaning that I see them often.  They are continuing their education and doing things with their lives when they didn't think they would graduate high school. I must admit that I pushed them to stick with school and not give up when they were in tenth grade, and I love it when they tell me what they are doing now.



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