Tuesday, August 30, 2016

School Days: Navigating the Challenges

Schools are complex environments with many people and many activities. And in environments with that level of activity and number of people there are bound to be challenges.

Today's challenges included scheduling some specialist teachers and facilities issues. Our base schedule is awesome, but scheduling some specialist educators could not happen due to a number of reasons. That means we'll have to wait for our specialist services to start. I imagine that the wait won't be too long. In the meantime I'll study the IEPs and lists of students who receive those services today to make sure I'm meeting the requirements listed.

Facilities issues included new classroom equipment that requires installation. Hopefully it won't mean too much of a disruption to the room set up. We're in an old building so there's often updates that occur which mean rearranging the room and other related actions.

Also the union membership met to discuss the changes in health care which means more costs for many teachers. The information is complex and worrisome. I was surprised that the plans changed before people had a chance to update their flex spending accounts to put away enough pretax dollars to help out with the extra costs. I have to keep studying the information and go to extra meeting to hear the descriptions as well. Rising health care costs is a worry for many educators and I assume, others too.

On the positive side, an awesome teaching assistant set up the classroom library, and the team, as usual, powered through a large number of items quickly.

Many, many new students and kindergartners toured the building. Their enthusiasm and excitement for school was wonderful. Bright eyes and energetic they roamed the halls.

Further the custodians, as I mentioned before, did an awesome job cleaning the room and making it shiny for the first day.

The start of any new adventure has its positive events and challenges, and the key is to navigate that path with grace, respect, and care. Onward.