28 January 2020

Remember When

My post is a little late today. I just got home from having dinner with a friend that I used to work with when I wrote this tweet from 2009:

https://twitter.com/science_goddess/status/1157621635

When people asked me what it was like to work for the state education agency (SEA), I try to be diplomatic with my answer. I really didn't enjoy the lifestyle that engendered the tweet above. Being on the road a lot is not my idea of a good time. Also, when you're out in the field, people never separate you from your role. You are always the SEA...which is akin to Big Brother. You have to watch every word you say because people treat it like gospel. You are always "on." I remember my very first day of work with the agency, which was on the road, and getting to my little room at the end of the day and crying myself to sleep because the enormity of it all was overwhelming.

But I don't say these things when people ask. Instead, I try to remember that it was a very unique gift to be able to see what "school" looks like across the entire state—from gigantic districts to ones with just two teachers (one of whom drives the bus, too) and 25 students. I saw districts that still use their one-room school house. And I saw three-story buildings housing a couple thousand high schoolers. Very few people get to see school in such a variety of settings. I've also gotten to see large-scale testing in a way that almost no one has—from the writing of an item all the way through scoring tens of thousands of student answers.

And when I'm asked if I miss any of that, I can honestly say that I don't. I appreciate the opportunity I had, but I don't want it again. I am also grateful to transition to the role of support and friend to those who still work in the agency. I understand what the pressures are and I let them just be themselves for a little while. I try to see them for who they are, not what they do.


Today's tweet was selected from a list provided each day by On This Day.  The account shows a user's full history of tweets for the given calendar date. Just a reminder that I'm going to post a tweet a day from a previous year and expand on it a bit as a way to get back in the habit of sharing via a blog. You can see my full list of tweets posted on this day, or start seeing your own by following that account.

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