Thursday, January 7, 2016


My school is right in the middle of midterm exams right now, so this week is both busier than usual and less busy than usual at the same time.

Midterms means that I am proctoring exams for English, Math and Science but not teaching any of my normal classes over the two days of exams.

My science exams for my classes are tomorrow, so I'll be grading well into the weekend then preparing for next week and next month right away on Monday.

I generally like the small break from the loud classrooms. I have the added stress this year of a decision that I have to make.

My boss basically came to me a few days ago and told me that our "International Principal" was transferring to a different branch or being given a different job within the hierarchy here. Anyway, the job position is open and my name was one of the ones dropped to fill it. It was offered previously to our senior teacher, but he left back to Scotland to continue his education and now the offer has fallen to me.

Now, the term "principal" sounds like such a big promotion, but that's only when I have my "western" brain in my head. When I look at the job of principal here, I don't see it as a promotion. It's ten times the work I do as a science teacher and likely the same salary or less considering I probably won't be able to teach special "tutor" classes for extra money any more. We'll see about that though, I have more meetings with the boss and other office folk soon to go over the job description and other special projects that they would have me leading if I decide to take the job.

Here at my school, as there are Thai teachers and foreign teachers, there are two Principal positions. One is the "Thai Principal" who takes care of Thai concerns to include Thai teachers, all students and parents and the "International Principal" who is in charge of Foreign concerns which would include foreign teachers, all students and parents.

I looked on our company website and found the job description and duties and responsibilities for several jobs. Let me just put it this way, the document for "Subject Teacher" was less than two pages long. "Head of Department" was 2 pages, "Academic  Coordinator" was two pages. My boss's job was two or three pages. "International Principal" FIVE STINKIN' PAGES!!

Anyway, perhaps I sound negative, but If I was negative I wouldn't even be considering the new position. I'm more overwhelmed. I'm just kinda stuck between thinking and acting like a "teacher" with daily interaction with school kids and thinking like an adult (haha) dealing more with school budgets, teachers and parents on a daily basis. I would certainly miss the classroom interaction and close relationships that you build between teacher and students. But this is my ninth year of doing that. Is it time for a new challenge? Will this position offer me more or less job security? Will I be good at dealing with adults after years and years of being down at a child's level.

It is a difficult decision for sure. I could easily just sit back and live the easy life of teaching my subject in a position and school where I have carved myself out a nice little place where nobody bothers me much or I could jump at the job that "sounds" like a step up, struggle through some growing pains and steep learning curve and see where that takes me.

Well, we'll see what comes about in the next weeks. Even if I accept the position as the campus International Principal, I will finish my current school year as the science teacher, see my 6th graders off to high school and start the principal role when the next school year begins.

It's a nerve wracking decision to make, but it's a good decision to be faced with. Pae and I are talking about it, thinking about it, considering the positives and known and unknown negatives. We'll make the right decision whatever the decision is ;)

1 comment:

mardenheyjude said...

Guy: You will be good at anything you do. Try not to be overwhelmed, instead be proud of the fact that you certainly must be thought of as one who could do the job, otherwise they wouldn't offer it to you. Whatever you and Pae decide will be the right decision for you. Love always, Auntie

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