Well, I'm way behind. Being sick just sucked the energy right out of my life. I can barely remember what has happened the last few times I've subbed, and I've got bigger fish to fry anyway.
Friday I drove to the K.C. campus of Baker University for an interview. It wasn't really an interview as such, so much as a "Congratulations, you're accepted, here's what you need to do next" kind of meeting. So, for those of you are not familiar with this, allow me to summarize:
Kansas has recently (within the last six or seven years) implemented a program by which people with college degrees in fields other than education may get provisional teaching certification while simultaneously taking classes to earn full certification. The primary targets are Math majors, people with lots of science classes, and language arts majors. As an engineer, I was only about eight credit hours short of having enough math classes to participate in this program to become a math teacher. (On a side note, the other two fields were so far off that I might as well have just gone back for a Master's degree in Education.) So I took statistics last summer, elementary linear algebra last fall, and geometry for sadists this spring, and now I am in.
They gave me a letter saying that I am in the program, and now all I have to do is find a job. Once I am accepted into a teaching position, my contacts at Baker will assist in my application to the state for a provisional license. I will take a one week course this summer ("Introduction to not getting your butt kicked in the classroom" I believe) at the K.C. campus, then different courses throughout the next three years on-line during the school year. I have been told to expect to spend five or six hours per week on classwork for this, on top of all the planning and hassle of a new teaching job. It's gonna be a tough three years, especially the first. I was also told that the dropout rate is about 40-45%.
It's also a bit expensive, at a time when we do not have an income that exceeds our living expenses. That will shift quite a bit when I go to full time teaching, but for now getting over the financial hurdle will likely involve dipping deeper into our retirement money. Which scares me a bit. It always reminds me of an episode of the Simpsons in which Homer is facing a difficult problem, and he thinks to himself, "This is a job for my brain!" So he mentally looks inside of his own skull, but only finds a note that reads, "I.O.U. one brain.--Homer". "D'oh!" I don't want to hit retirement age and find nothing but an I.O.U.
I am a bit worried about the whole thing, to the extent that I am capable of, anyway. I've found that I'm a lot better at worrying about the future now that I have Maxine in my life, but I still have a tendency to not lay awake in bed at night unable to sleep because I think that we won't be able to handle what is coming our way.
This is mostly because it's just not in my nature to worry. I wish that I could say it was just because my faith, but I think my faith is actually bolstered by my nature.
In the next couple of days I will be putting together my resume for schools, and getting on the Kansas Education website. I hope that my meager substituting counts for something in this process. At least they've seen my name before, and I haven't started any fires or embarrassed any dignitaries.