We said goodbye to two teachers and three support staff on Friday. Change is hard. I attempted to draw a parallel that students would understand at our last day awards assembly. “Your teachers are going to miss you terribly, but they are also very excited for your new adventure next year in a new grade and class. We have some staff members that we will all miss, but we are excited that they are heading on a new adventure too.”
I almost believed my own story. And I am happy to see staff move on to new roles, different challenges and new settings. But change is hard.
I have worked at Grant School for 17 years (more if you add student teaching). We have been blessed with an amazingly stable staff, close colleagues in and out of school, shared experiences and memories that go way back. And it’s not a ‘poor me’ situation. I know many schools experience staffing changing every year.
I am feeling the weight that’s coming–building relationships, fostering opportunities for connections, taking time to form bonds that make a community not just a staff.
This coming school year will be the perfect scenario. Two teachers returning to full time, a new job share partnership, a new soon-to-be-hired 6th grade teacher and five teachers still on board from when I began here at Grant. The old (in the best way) joins the new (or new-ish).
So I’ve got quite a few weeks to consider how that might work, what we might do, how I can provide the time and structure for such community building. Now my opening Change is Hard become Change is an Opportunity. Much better.