Why oh why does summer pass at a much faster rate than the other seasons of the year?? The million dollar question. The weather has also taken a turn for the worse - reflecting my mood?? I'm not really complaining though (yuck yuck!) as I am ready to work my way through another school year with my ever eternal optimism firmly in place and we REALLY NEED RAIN!! Though the THREAT of rain seems to dominate the day rather than the actual stuff!
So yes, I am gearing myself up for the first day of school - I just don't know for sure what day that will be...huh? (insert monumental sigh here) In spite of my best efforts I cannot control a) my teacher's union b) my school board and c) the provincial government of Ontario. I'll back up a little: I was very pleased to hear that my union had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the provincial gov't by working within the gov'ts mandate of freezing wages for two years among other things. Yay - potential strike/lockout averted!
Oops, spoke too soon. My school board has rejected the deal and has asked for conciliation which means involving a third party to work out a contract which would then be forced on the union and the school board. Confusing no?
So currently we have a couple of school boards that have agreed to work within the Memorandums of Understanding, two large unions who reject the MOUs, school boards rejecting the MOUs and the gov't who just wants everything resolved by August 31st to avoid paying out huge pay increases (old contracts roll over as of Sept. 1st) and to avoid lockouts by the school boards and strikes by the teachers' unions. In other words things are in a great BIG MESS!!
I just want to go back to work....I want to see my students....I miss them.....
So next Saturday I'll be headed back to Ontario and will get ready for my students. Hopefully my professional development on Aug. 20th and 21st will still be a GO and hopefully on August 27th I'll be allowed into my school to ready my classroom for a new year.
I haven't mentioned the financial aspects of this yet because I'm hopeful (there's that word again) that everything will be resolved and I won't have to live on strike pay and walk the picket line. I've never had that experience in 20 years of teaching and would really like to finish off my career in the classroom, NOT on the picket line.