If you follow me on social media, you probably already know I resigned from my job as STEM IB Biology teacher at Robinson High School last Friday. I had every intention to return to my dreamy job at the end of my maternity leave, but my heart started feeling a little heavy when new opportunities to reach thousands of kids kept coming my way. Robinson High School is a unique, smaller school with an incredible IB program, staff, students, and overall community feel. With that being said, I am only able to reach around 200 kids between classes, Robotics, and cheerleading every year excluding the professional development outreach (unknown numbers as I have been out of the follow-up loop for almost a year on leave). Although I worked alongside some of the best teachers in the world and very much loved my job, I knew it was time to move on. My outreach is destined to reach beyond the walls of a few classrooms in one state.
I am going to outline exactly how I know my time needed to be focused elsewhere:
1. My contract working on virtual reality with a neat company has been extended. The modules will reach students worldwide grades k-12.
2. An opportunity to continue worldwide professional development for teachers with PBL Consulting.
3. I am almost finished developing my own STEM projects in collaboration with Solidworks, Craft Unique, and field-based STEM professionals from various companies. So flipping cool, just wait!
4. A large university just contacted me- I have a meeting to discuss STEM with them this Friday. I have no idea where this will go, but I am thrilled to find out!
5. A HUGE virtual reality development opportunity with a top software company is in the making (more details as this develops further).
1. I work from home and am able to spend quality time with both of my beautiful children.
2. My husband likes that the pressure of "who's going to take off work with the sick baby or toddler" is alleviated. He is an Engineering Director in a demanding job and is rarely available to take off. If he does leave the office, he has to bring work home and extend his next work day(s) by several hours to catch up.
3. With budget cuts continuing in my school district, my salary would only cover daycare expenses for two. Yes, I would be working for $0. Neither of my children are of "free school" age yet. That means next year would be a complete bust for me financially.
I am still very connected to teachers in classrooms and plan to participate in guest teaching opportunities, educational conferences, and professional development. I am also working closely with teachers to pilot several STEM lessons. If you are a STEM teacher and want to try them out and provide feedback, email me with reasons I should choose you: email@example.com.
I'm not leaving the classroom, I'm just moving MY classroom. I have a passion for working with teachers and STEM professionals and am thrilled to have the time and energy to dedicate to this expansive effort. More trained STEM teachers mean more STEM for students, which is my ultimate goal.
My main reason for leaving the classroom is to expand my outreach and focus on more STEM for more students. Below is a list of reasons to leave your classroom:
1. You have an opportunity to share education with more teachers and students.
2. An opportunity in a field you are passionate about pops up.
3. The pay doesn't cover childcare (sad, but true).
Teachers can overcome burnout, crappy administration, tough students, and lack of materials, but we cannot pass up opportunities to better ourselves and our nation's students. Resigning has not been easy, but resigning was the right decision for me. I hope if your desire is to move beyond your current role, you just go for it!