Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Treading Water

I've been trying to turn this 'subbing' gig into an adventure. Truly, I have!!

As much as I love being able to work in one school for days or weeks at a time, when I get called into a new school unexpectedly I think of it as another brand new slate. A new school to check out. Meeting new people. Having the opportunity to see how other school offices operate. Another school to circle on my city/school map as a school-that-I-have-worked-at.

Yesterday, I was backing out of the garage when my phone rang. Change of plans. I would be going to a different school than I thought I would be when I stepped out of the house. Oh well. An adventure!

Since I got the call late, I arrived a few minutes late. I called in to the 'Help Desk' to advise them of the last minute change and they couldn't do anything for me because it would be undone at 8:30. Just wait. I waited. An hour later, nothing worked. I called again. They had no record that my school destination had changed ....

So once again ... I was working without the programs that I needed to do my job. I couldn't print off a class list for a substitute teacher. Not only because my computer program was not functioning yet ... but because I had no idea where the photocopy machine was. I am (just now) finding out the limitations of my email program ...

I rolled with the punches. Did what I could. Smiled and introduced myself to the staff as they came into the office.

Then I accidentally grabbed an extra sheet of paper off of the printer when I took what I had printed. When I realized my error, I delivered it to the correct person ... but only after the words (something to the effect of) "employee appraisal" crossed my vision. Shortly thereafter, the principal mentioned the need to rectify an oversight (the substitute that didn't have a class list) earlier in the morning and reference was made to reporting to the person that hired me.

Whoa! Suddenly, I felt stripped of any false security that I had been faking this past month (or three). I am working without a net. I am on my own. No one has my back until they hire me in a permanent position.

Today, I am headed off to work at a school where I will be on my own. For the better part of three weeks. I know where I'm going. I may not know what I'm doing when I get there, but computer programs should be up and running since I am going where I am supposed to go today.

Then (minutes ago) the phone rang. The automatic dispatch system called me to the school I worked at yesterday. I refused the assignment because there is no one else at the school that I have already been assigned to today. I felt guilty refusing an assignment but there were no live people to talk to so I called and left messages with those that I thought this affected.

Three weeks at one school. Three weeks of (hopefully) no last minute changes.

I am desperately trying to make the best of the situation that I am in. It isn't easy, but I am doing my best. I feel like I'm walking a tightrope without a net. That has never been one of my strong points.

It feels like a sink or swim situation. I can swim. I just need lessons!

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