So you've all heard I got a promotion, which starts in a week and a half (ie next pay period).
I need not rehash it. It's gratifying that management supported me, that I work at a place where such a thing is both possible and encouraged, that my supervisors are educators whose support thus means a particularly great deal to me - I don't have to look ONLY to my professors from grad school as guidance now, though I love them so - that I really feel like I can learn here, and that I feel like I'm really helping my city, albeit indirectly.
You know, I wanted to come back home to help New York. For better or worse, NYC is only of the two or three most beloved things in my life, in all its loud, dirty, smelly glory. I love it the way other people love their longtime pets. I will most likely decamp to a suburb at some point for family reasons and I've come to terms with that, but I must, must always have a hand in helping this city in some fashion.
So I never would have thought about another (another!) degree while at my last job. Indeed, just last year I had cockamamie ideas about random businesses to start because I was just treading water there. Now that I feel like I'm really learning a lot, I want to learn everything, although that's impossible.
And with my skillset growing to include curriculum development for adults - real serious, from-scratch curricula - I realize that part of the reason educators aren't respected the way they should be is that the training for new teachers - and old teachers! - is so haphazard. Yeah, some teachers get copious training, expert training, wonderful training. I sure did in grad school.
But then, much as I love my alma maters, I know for a fact that some of the teachers I had were woefully unqualified and/or undertrained. It turns out that, like me in Korea, some of them figured out they were great at some aspect of it and developed into superstar educators. But a lot of them either left (which is fine) or just stayed the same.
A lot of little kids hate their teachers for dumb reasons - she gives too much work! etc - and so I can't trust my 8-year-old impressions very much. But I do know that no teacher should be expected to flourish without top-notch training and consistent development. Many dedicated teachers try to improve themselves, and they do improve. And the very worst often teach until TFA lets them stop, and move on.
But what of all the teachers in the middle? Not everyone is going to be the best, and few will be the worst. That still lives tons of poorly trained, overwhelmed people trying to do a job that is very, very hard.
I work adjacent to the government though I'm not a city employee. And I think, if I do go and do something else, get another degree with a whole nother bucket of endless debt (there really aren't very many scholarships), training teachers to be the very best is where I can succeed and flourish and help my city all at the same time.