I’m OK

My last post, or perhaps a combination of the last several, appears to have unintentionally set several of you to worrying about me. I’m fine, I promise, or at least I’m as close to fine as I’ve been at any other point during the last few years. I’m “fine” by post-2016 standards, whatever that means.

And, honestly, there was no good reason to be secretive about what I needed luck for other than pure superstition, so: despite having made the decision to stay at my current school back in early June, now that we’ve got a principal and assistant principal named, along with a couple of articles in the local paper about recent school board meetings, I have become fully convinced that the district has entirely given up on our school and that we are being set up to continue to fail. I do not know my new principal very well but what I have witnessed thus far has not been good, and while I haven’t even met the new AP yet he has “pushover” tattooed on his forehead. We have a new dean of students as well. None of the three have any experience in their jobs. Our principal has never been a principal and has never been a middle school administrator at all; our new AP has never been an administrator, and our new Dean has not only never held that job she’s never worked in a middle school.

Oh, and I found out that literally two 8th graders passed the math ILEARN. Two. One point five percent. I don’t know which two. I suspect I can guess on at least one of them, but I don’t have names yet. So, I dunno, probably I suck at my job or something.

Anyway. Long story short, based on all that, despite my promise in May, I’ve applied for a few jobs at another district and if I get a chance I’m splitting.. One particular school has four jobs open and I’m qualified for three of them. I formally applied for two of the three (I really don’t want to be a Language Arts teacher despite technically being certified for it) and sent the principal an email with my resume attached as well. I was hoping, what with school starting in 2 1/2 weeks, that I’d hear from the principal yesterday or today; that has not happened.

I can think of a hundred thousand reasons why no one has called me yet; I am, nonetheless, assuming that I am blacklisted for some reason. At this point I have been applying for jobs since March and have not received a single call-back from anything other than a couple of purely lateral moves within the same organization. It’s not like these folks have access to my current test scores or anything, but … fuck, people, school starts August 17. I’m perfectly fucking willing and ready to move over to your building. What the fuck are you waiting for?

Hm. This post may not have done quite the job I wanted in reassuring people that I’m all right.

Cross your fingers for me

Or light a candle, or talk to Jesus, or whatever it is you do. I’m not going to say why and honestly I feel like I’ll know whether I got any supernatural assistance within a day or two. Just help me out if you get a minute, OK? Thanks.

(No, this is not lottery related, although I suppose it could be.)

More sudden realizations

Everybody’s all excited about working remotely right now, and while I’ve temporarily hit pause on the job search for another couple of weeks, the large majority of the positions I applied to were remote jobs. Some were in easily-reached locations like Indianapolis and Chicago, where if there were occasional days I needed to be in the office it wouldn’t represent a massive hardship, but the rest of those could be, well, anywhere. I didn’t apply to anything literally outside the country but I pretty much spanned the full width of it in those first few weeks.

So far I’ve been called for zero (0) interviews, which is … a little discouraging! One site let me know a human being had looked at my profile a couple of times, and I had somewhat high hopes for that, and LinkedIn has connected me to a couple of headhunter types who sent me messages about stuff I was either wildly unqualified for in one case or not interested in in another, but there have been no callbacks for anything. And it literally just hit me today: the disadvantage to the job searcher who is looking for remote work is that every remote job is a de facto nationwide search. I still have vestiges of that former honors kid’s confidence, right, that I’m good at a lot of things, better than most people, and that therefore I should just naturally float to the top of any applicant pool. But when you’re getting 5-600 applicants for a job (and I’ve seen jobs with way more than that) and they could come from anywhere? I have really nothing that’s going to stand out against that type of a search. Sure, I’m good, and I’ll be good at whatever job I happen to be applying for, but what I’m not is especially unique. There’s lots of middle-aged white dudes with a couple of Master’s degrees and an award or two. And even if I want to be super arrogant and say that I’m more qualified for Position X than 90% of humanity (or even if that’s an accurate assessment of my abilities!) when you’re looking at the entire country as your potential applicant pool that 10% is a lot of Goddamned people.

I may need to shift my focus here a bit, is what I’m saying. There’s no reason not to apply for these jobs, but I can’t count on finding something just by throwing a lot of CVs at remote jobs, and I may want someone with a little more experience in this to look at my résumé. I have a job this fall regardless, but I don’t want it, and it would be better for everyone involved if I was able to get something else. But I need to find a way to tighten up the pool of folk I’m competing with for these jobs, or I need to find a way to stand out against the big searches, or preferably both. I think I’m going to turn my personal website back on and see if that helps; maybe I’ll work on it tonight in between Elden Ring, grading, and planning for next week. Ten school days to Spring Break. I can do this.

Okay, that’s a plan

I think– I think— I may have a plan for next year that improves my current job situation in certain ways without upending every single thing I’m trying to do with my life. Some dominos have to fall into place– namely, getting hired for a couple of things– but I have reason to believe my chances for said things are at least higher than average and therefore I ought to be okay, and at any rate I’m going to find out pretty soon, which is better than every other job opportunity I have going right now. If this doesn’t pan out, I go back to full-scale job hunting over Spring Break. Let’s hope.

…and I’ve been sitting here staring at the screen for twenty minutes, so apparently that’s all I’ve got for today? I mean, it’s a plan. That’s something, right?

Free day off!

I was supposed to have jury duty today, and as of last night it hadn’t cancelled, so I was hoping that this would actually be the time that I get to serve on a jury– and yes, I mean get to, because I’ve never done it before and I wouldn’t mind the experience. I got the notification that my service was cancelled as I was getting into the car to head to the courtroom– which, on one hand, yay, because I’d already gotten the day off and it wasn’t like I was going back in, and on the other hand boo, because I’d gotten the day off so I could go do my Civic Duty as an American and that clearly wasn’t happening.

It’s not like there’s any chance I’m ever going to be allowed on a jury in the first place, unless the prosecutor isn’t paying attention and just assumes that since I’m a fat bald white guy with a beard I’m going to assume that whoever they put in front of me is guilty. I was kinda looking forward to declaring that all cops were bastards in my jury questionnaire. Alas, ’tis not to be, at least not this time.

So I came back inside and started job-hunting. Someone asked yesterday what sorts of jobs I was looking for. There’s a spreadsheet, because of course there is:

The blacked-out one is my kid’s school; they don’t actually have any openings right now but I sent in an application anyway just in case somebody resigns anytime soon. I’m not holding my breath over that one, but it’s pretty much the only way I’m in a classroom next year, since it’s a private school, which I’m pretty sure means that HB 1134 can’t touch it. If I find out otherwise I will probably mark them off the list. Nearly all of the rest of them are remote.

The interesting thing: I’ve been complaining about the quality of the jobs that the various search sites have been returning, but it turns out that once you start telling them what you’re applying for they start figuring out how to dial you in. I’m still getting the occasional blip where I search for education-related jobs in my area that pay $65K or more and get something in Fiji that pays $2 an hour to masturbate musk oxen, but … well, it’s getting better.

Anybody have any contacts at Edmentum, by any chance?