I was barely twenty-three years old and hard pressed to measure 5’4″ in my best wedge.
It was my first fall semester as a new teacher. ~Freshman and Sophomore English~ Did I mention I was twenty-three? A shy eight-years-older than the students I taught. I can only imagine how seriously they did not take me.
Oh, I was an insecure little mess.
To prove how young-looking and so very 5’4″ I was, the assistant Principal mistook me for a student one day. Yelling me down one afternoon for running up the stairs. My arms full of handouts from the printer. (I was late to something, I am sure.)
“Slow down” he barked.
My face hot, I turned and apologized.
Add that to my insecurity bank. Sigh.
Four years of college and two years of post grad do nothing to by-pass the amount of Rookie I had to work through as a first year teacher. There is no way around it. R-O-O-K-I-E. Not to mention the one “about-to-retire-and-I-don’t-care-what-anyone-thinks” teacher who called me “Rookie” every chance he had. Oh how those tenured teachers made me shake in my boots. Or in my case, wedges. All of their wisdom and experienced shrunk my 5’4″ down to one inch tall. I sat and nodded through every faculty meeting, praying no one would ask me my thoughts. Mark this as one of the few times in my life I haven’t had much to say.
If I could do it all over again, I would make a suggestion to the University of Tennessee. A suggestion for another class to be added to the education curriculum.
School Politics 101: What to know and how to survive
Little Crenshaw babies came quickly, so I didn’t teach long. But I taught long enough to learn how grueling school politics can be. I wasn’t prepared as a new teacher for this. I didn’t realize how much goes on behind staff meeting doors that parents never know about. (Teachers, you’ve got a hand raised right now, I know)
Hardship and politics fall on every school. And even though I taught at an incredible school smack-dab in the heart of the Bible belt, we were very effected. Bible-belt schools wrestle with politics. Even BIBLE SCHOOLS wrestle with politics. Amen?
Satan wants our babies, remember? He prowls around looking for someone to devour. And he is methodical. He premeditates. And I bet my bottom dollar he sits waiting in the brush, ready to pounce outside your child’s school.
Scary thought? It should be.
He would love nothing more than to tear a good school apart. You know, the good school we send our children into every morning?
And what better way to ruin a piece of good fruit? Start at its core…. The faculty. The staff.
Oh parents. We must pray for our school leadership. They need us.
They need our encouragement and support. They could use a card from you. Or that amazing banana bread recipe you make. Let us show our appreciation for them on days other than May 7th (Teacher Appreciation Day). Let them know that you are EXCITED about this coming year.
I urge that requests, prayers, intercession, and thanksgiving be made for everyone — for kings and all those in authority that we may lead peaceful and quiet lives, godly and dignified in every way. 1 Timothy 2:1-2
Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear and rejoice with trembling. Blessed are all who take refuge in Him. Psalm 2:10-12
Paul urges us – Pray for the authorities. Pray for peace and quiet and dignity. Pray for them to pursue Jesus. Pray they will lead godly lives. Oh Lord, I pray that my boys’ teachers and authorities will be wise and serve the Lord with fear. I beg you, Lord. Mmm.
Father God, thank you for the faculty and staff of our schools. Lord, I lift them up to you. Specifically I pray over ________________ and _________________. I ask you would fill them with your Holy Spirit. If they are not believers in Christ, I ask for you to move into their space and change their hearts. Bless them, Lord. I bind any “spirit of strife” that tries to come upon the faculty of our school. I they would have peace, quiet, and dignity in all circumstances. Lord, I ask that the relationship they share with my child to be healthy and favorable in Your sight. I pray we would all work as unto You and not to please man (Col 3:23). Anoint the staff and faculty with Your Holy Spirit. Pour Yourself on them today. Protect our school from the wiles of the devil (Eph 6:11 KJV). It’s in the powerful name of Jesus I pray, Amen.
Reflect and Respond:
Take five minutes and write an email or note to your child’s teacher(s) telling them you are praying for them as they prepare and plan for this year.
Get to know the main office staff over the course of this new school year. They do so much! Pray for them by name. Ask God how you can bless them, too. Serving? Prayer? Banana bread (wink)?
Romans 13:1: For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
Ephesians 6:10-11: Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
If you know the name of your child’s teacher, Principal, Headmaster, etc, write it in the comment section. Together, let us all lift up the names of these important people. PRESCHOOL AND DAYCARE INCLUDED!
Lift up…Mrs. Grob, Mrs. Bowden, Mrs. Platillero, Mrs. Hale and Mr. Cowart. Thanks! xoxo
Headmaster of Community Christian School: Fred Banke; Nursery and Preschool Director, Ashlee Neumann
Thanks Jenny. Lifting them up.
Can we lift me up today? I’m a new teacher as of tomorrow- eek!!
SWEET SARAH!!! YES! Lord, Jesus cover Sarah with your peace and fill her with Your Spirit! Encourage her and give her deep confirmation that Your sovereign hand has placed her where she is. In Jesus name. Amen! Love you Sarah!
Great post! Praying now, love u. xoxo
I am praying for you EB. You are a teacher, too! Love you. xoxo
Oh Becky, this blog post is so good….please pray for Mr. Baker, Mr. Kenigson, Mr. Enloe, Ms. Unruh, Mrs. Tanner, Mrs. Platillero, Mrs. Bowden, & Miss Mandy
On it, Julie. 😉
Thank you I needed this as school starts for us tomorrow.
Oh, good Les. Love you!
It blesses me that you added preschool & daycare teachers. Having taught pre-k for 12 years & now a director. I’m still interviewing for 2 teaching positions (school starts the 22nd). Please pray for the new teachers that they would know that God is calling them to this position. And for wisdom for me to choose who He has already choosen. Thanks!
Kathleen, I thank God for the wisdom He will give you for this position! Praise the LORD!
Praying for the faculty and staff of A.L. Lotts…especially Mrs. Arnold and Mr. Pickwell:<)
I am praying with you Rachel!
Oh girl, I love this! Pray for sweet 1st grade teacher Mrs. Babinski! btw… You need a Pin button. I want to Pin your blog!
Sweet Mrs. Babinski! I lift up her name with you, Betsy!
And a button…hmm. I need to get one, yes! Great idea 😉
I have fallen in love with your blog. Thank you so much for your wisdom. My sweet first-born, 5 year old daughter starts kindergarten on the 21st. I am a nervous wreck. Please pray for Mrs. West, Mrs. Harris, Mr. Boemker. I also am a teacher, recently moved to be closer to family. I would love prayers for a teaching position. Praying for your teachers.
I will NEVER forget your energy and enthusiasm as my Freshman year, early morning, high school English teacher! To us bleary-eyed adolescents, you fearlessly presented the encouragement and knowledge each day that we needed to hear. I know many of us can never thank you enough for taking the time and extra effort to make English class fun! You were just what we all needed to start our hectic high school days. 🙂
Please BE ENCOURAGED and know that your years as a high school teacher were NOT a reflection of a time in your life (or ours) where your words and knowledge fell on deaf ears! And thank you especially for being the sweet spirit of support and leadership for so many young ladies during the (even earlier!) morning Bible studies we all shared each week. We all needed someone special to lead us girls in the Lord’s name as He revealed His plans for us, and we’re so glad He appointed YOU! You were a true blessing then, and are an even stronger and wiser source of loving Christian strength for so many today and every day!
Much love and God’s blessings to you (and teachers everywhere) always!
Laura, this makes me want to bawl my eyes out. I love you.