Mental Health and Support

I feel like I am losing my mind at my school this year. My principal is after me, and my students constantly cut and are rude, with parents who don't seem to care. I am honestly ready to give up.

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My suggestion is to work on building relationships with the kids and deemphasize your concern over the principal's opinion. I was in a similar situation a few years ago, and I was in a terrible place mentally and emotionally. I finally decided that if my interactions with kids were strong then that would translate to improved behavior in the classroom. Once I saw a shift in classroom behaviors, which happened quickly, I was then able to breathe. My principal is in his second year, and he is under increasing stress, and sometimes that stress seeps around the edges and encroaches into our space. There is very little that a principal can do if he/she is dealing with a highly engaging teacher. Your job is teaching, not principal pleasing, although I know that can be very hard to remember when they are pressuring you. You need to remember that you're the only one who can make a shift in the classroom, and it needs to be instigated by you for the benefit of both you and your students.

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I feel you. I’m going crazy this year. I truly hate my last period class. Funny thing, I don’t individually hate the students but just collectively. I’m so unhappy but I’m trapped. I’ve been teaching for over 20 years. I don’t even know what else I can do. I haven’t been in the market for such a long time...I’m going to die soon if I stay though. I’m in such a dark place right now. Thank God I’m vested in my retirement. But can’t access it for 9 years due to my age. But you, ...are you at a point you can exit? I’m at a point so close to going to packets with little interaction with students. The heck with the curriculum. And the target on my back from admin I don’t even care anymore. I just need another job before I can leave. One that will give me some benefits. My health issues (physical) - all caused by teaching - won’t let me go down to nothing.

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I relate to this so much. I’ve gone to some seriously dark places this school year and it’s scary as hell. I used to love teaching, but this year I’m on a team with a neurotic moron and a first year teacher who doesn’t plan or organize at all. I have almost thirty students in my class and no support. My kids are straight jerks. Absolutely awful. Their parents are incapable of holding their kids accountable for anything. It’s just been a drag this year and I’m not sure how much more I can take. My light at the end of the tunnel is the promise of switching to a different school in the district next year.

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I completely understand. I often wonder if there is a target on my forehead.

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