The “someday I will…”’s are coming at me faster than expected. I love teaching, and every year seems to be better than the one before with my classes, but I’m pretty crispy about the job in general. I’m tired of the repetition of wheel reinvention whenever a new administrator comes around. I’m not surprised that education is slow to change and not improving – every new administrator thinks they have THE answer, and all history and real teaching experience is ignored. It’s like we are trying to build a skyscraper with no foundation – in sand. This is very frustrating for a goal-orientated gal like me. I don’t just like to set goals and targets – I like to smash them.
A couple weeks ago, I got a letter informing me that the cost to submit my application to renew my national board certification will be $1150. I’ve had that certification since 2003 and our state gives an 8% raise to national board certified teachers. There is no guarantee that the application will be approved. There is no guarantee that the 8% raise will stay in place with more budget cuts looming. I’ve talked to several teacher friends and they all had the same reaction – don’t do it. This is my 16th year of teaching. If I don’t renew, I’ll lose the raise after November 2013, three years before retirement. Until last year, I didn’t think I’d quit at 20 years, but now I may want to retire sooner. If there is an early out option, it might be smart to retire early to leave with the 8% raise in place.
I don’t have the money for the renewal. I don’t really have a choice about not doing it. I’d have to charge it and I’m fairly confident I’d pass the renewal, but I’m not confident about the raise staying in place as the legislature keeps cutting education. There is another option. I decided months ago that “someday I will” get a personal training certification. If I speed things up and do it sooner, it will still be a cost to be charged, but it will be less. I found someone today who will loan me the study materials so I’d only have to pay for the exam – it’s not cheap – $600. But that’s much less than the renewal. I would also be taking a step I know I want to take. Maybe I’ll be able to train part time and during summers. I think I would be able to make enough to cover the lost raise.
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