Things have settled into a sense of "normalcy", for lack of a better term, since I started the high school job. I'm a month into it and starting to feel like I somewhat belong there.
I still have regularly scheduled time with one college tutee, and I have a couple of other high school tutees who occasionally call me in a panic.
Plus I'm getting to know most of my 250-ish students at the school a bit better. They're a diverse group of good kids. My hardest adjustment has been getting used to how ordered and by-the-book public school is. In some cases, it's good and necessary, but I also think it's rather prison-like in others. I'm not much for being a prison warden.
One student, who sports burgundy hair and a septum ring, told me I was "pretty chill", I think as a compliment? Either way, I don't think that's a typical descriptor for a prison warden.
In the meantime, I have short conversations with a couple of crossing guards along my commute - nice ladies, as most all crossing guards are 😉. Some may recall that, back in my crossing guard days, I had a daily customer fondly known as "Bike Lady".
I never did learn her actual name. We would exchanged pleasantries, and I knew how long her commute was, but that was about it. In fact, I probably wouldn't even recognize her anywhere else because of her bike helmet and glasses she always wore with a ponytail.
Now, it seems, I have become Bike Lady.
One of the crossing guards commented on the large amount of traffic, noting that the high school and middle school were neighborhood schools, yet hardly anyone seems to walk to school anymore. I took this pic from my classroom one morning before the start of school.
No, that's not the parking lot, it just looks like one. It's the steady stream of cars inching to and from the "neighborhood" school. At least there's one representative on foot.
There are buses for students who live over a mile from school, and some of the cars are students and staff. But a large majority are students who live less than a mile away, being driven to school and dropped off by parents.
This is quite different from my own high school days. Parents rarely drove their kids to school, and typically only on days when the kids had something big to bring to school, and only if the kid didn't have a driver's license. I went to a relatively small school in a small town, so thought that might help explain the difference, but Magnum went to a big school in a big city where no one was driven by their parents either.
Is this a new thing now? Did YOU get your own self to high school and back?
Inquiring minds want to know.