The Struggle is Real…but I have snatched victory from the jaws of defeat!
In this modern age (so different from when I began teaching, back in 1988), student grades are submitted electronically, via computer. That means when grades are due on a particular date, they can be submitted up until midnight…at which point the system will lock you out, preventing any further entries.
In my case, the academic year’s first set of five week “progress report” grades were due today (well, technically yesterday at this point).
I am a HS English teacher.
With 92 students per day.
I bring home a LOT of papers, quizzes, reading logs and daily writing journals to read, correct, write suggestions on, and assess, followed by tabulating and entering averages into the computer, along with the variety of helpful comments that are expected and selected by code (i.e. typing in “300” will print out “A pleasure to have in class” on the report that students receive at home).
I am always behind in my paperwork (as in “I can either have clean clothes/see my kids/make dinner for the family/do the dishes/plan lessons/attend one of their sporting events/sleep for seven hours straight once in a while…or whittle away at the ever-growing pile of papers). Add my own fiction (or blog) writing to the mix, which is necessary for my mental health…and well, you get the idea.
It’s a never-ending battle, and a balancing act that tires me more than seven straight hours a day interacting with/facilitating discussions of/serving as sounding board and mediator for masses of young (sometimes hormonal) people ages 14 – 18. Don’t get me wrong: I love my job and adore my students – really and truly. A few get squirrely now and then, but mostly they are great. I feel privileged to work with them…but I HATE the paperwork.
Tonight, at the stroke of midnight, I entered in the last grade. I escaped the wrath of the Guidance Office, who would be calling me in consternation tomorrow morning if they opened the system to run grades and some of mine were missing.
I am Cinderella, and I made it out by the time the clock struck 12. 🙂
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