Drinking the Kool-Aid

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Jan 11 2013

Not Dead Yet

Yup, still kicking.


What I’m up to and how it’s going:

I’m working as a supervisor for an after-school program in my very same district. It’s an amazing job that I love. It’s SUPER easy, but I’m still learning things about how to motivate people and help them help kids. Plus, I’m working with K-5th, which is SO MUCH BETTER THAN HIGH SCHOOL. Teenagers think I’m inaccessible and weird; little kids adore me.

I’m also working independently as a math tutor. Right now I only have two students, both adults trying to wrestle with GED math. This is less easy but definitely more fun.

Still going to school for my master’s in ed leadership & policy, which will be finished after this semester (yay!). Still not sure exactly what I want to do with that.


It feels weird to blog about things that aren’t teaching, which is why things have been pretty sparse around here. But this post was actually inspired by that movie I should’ve seen forever ago, “Won’t Back Down.”


It did not make me feel good. Am I forever jaded? Positivity is coming back to me in so many other areas of my life, but somehow I still feel largely unmoved and hopeless about schools. I cried during that movie much more than the director intended, I’m sure. Why? Because I know that desperation? Because I know that desperation and surfed the line between “Back Down” and “Won’t Back Down” for too long to buy it? Because being optimistic now would make me feel like I was just too weak to do it then?

Personal reaction aside, I think the biggest thing that bugged me about the movie is this: the problem of the movie is that kids aren’t getting educated; kids aren’t learning, some teachers are bad teachers and kids are stuck in bad classrooms. Then the solution is “yay, our school was approved!” Maybe it’s because I’m maybe slightly more familiar than the film’s intended audience with how much that solution doesn’t mean, but it left me feeling even more sad than I was in the beginning. Poor characters. Don’t they know how much of an uphill battle they’ll face in “Won’t Back Down 2”?

One Response

  1. It was very exciting to see a post from you on here. So glad to hear you have a job you love!

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“The minute you think of giving up, think of the reason you held on so long.” - John Maxwell


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