Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
May 24 2011

Worst Person Ever

I told my kids that I’m leaving today. Tomorrow is 8th grade promotion, so I really did stall until the last minute and I don’t regret that at all.

Telling them was AWFUL. I have this horrible guilt about leaving here, where I know they love me and need me. I could do great work here and be an integral part of the community forever. These kids get abandoned by adults left and right, and they need people who are reliable and stable and steady. I’ve worked so hard to be that person for them, I’ve earned their trust, they know they can count on me, and now my two years is up and I’m walking away. Am I the most horrible person ever?

When you step out of context and don’t think about my kids on a personal level, leaving is no big deal. They’re 8th graders going on to high school anyway, and my job with them is basically done. I’ve worked hard, been reliable, and my assistant principal just pronounced me (at a staff meeting) as one of the most professional people he’s ever known. Plus, I’m going to keep teaching math with basically the same demographic. I’m doing what’s best for me as a person, but I’m also not giving up this cause or “these kids” on a broader scale. Same “One Day”, different city. I’m young and I can’t let guilt run my life, so everyone keeps telling me that this is obviously the right decision.

And then I told the kids today and they cried. And I cried. And it was TERRIBLE.

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