Perhaps I expect too much for my $75.00. And it's not even my $75.00. But still. A sick day to me is worth $20.00 when I retire or leave the district. That's what my employer will pay, up to one hundred days, maximum. But a substitute teacher in Hillmomba earns $75.00 per day. And believe me, I use the term earns loosely.
We have had some good substitutes on our list. But they are few and far between. I'm thinking of the post-septuagenarian who liked to golf in his spare time, who would follow my lesson plans to the last detail, and grade papers, and offer to prepare materials if he was going to fill in for an extended time. Now THAT, my friends, was a sub! And I'm pretty sure this lady would never let me down.
However...some substitutes are severely lacking in the common sense department. I don't mean to disparage an entire group. Perhaps I'm expecting too much from recent high school graduates with sixty hours of college credit and a clean criminal background check, or somebody's formerly stay-at-home mom.
I used to leave detailed plans with actual assignments that I would have given had I been there. But those days are gone. Now I leave busywork that must be turned in that day for credit. Silly me. I actually thought that my sub would pass out a set of Science World magazines, and the assignment sheet right next to them. Seemed simple enough to me, especially with those exact instructions and the location of the magazines and papers in the printed instruction sheet I left on top of my sub folder. And first hour actually turned them in as planned. What happened the rest of the day, I'm not sure. Because there was no summary. No notes jotted about who was absent, who misbehaved, or whether things went as planned. Even though my folder contains forms for just such comments.
Maybe it's just me, but if I spent the day in somebody else's classroom, I would be sure to leave things as I found them. Including the teacher's chair. For instance, I would not leave it at shin level if it was mid-thigh when I first sat on it.
Other things I would not have done:
*rearranged the classroom furniture, including student desks
*taken roll, then walked to the library to read magazines until time for the next class
*told dirty jokes to sixth graders, with the explicit instruction, "Don't tell Mrs. Hillbilly Mom!"
*left the class to their own devices while I strolled around the parking lot enjoying a cigarette
*eaten the students' reward candy stored in the bottom right desk drawer
*taken the class for a walk around the campus instead of doling out the assignment
*logged on with another teacher's name and browsed the internet all day looking at wedding dresses
*turned the thermostat up to 80 degrees
*let the students write their names all over the board with the dry-erase markers
*told the students the plans were stupid, and held a gossip session all hour
Lucky for me, all of these instances did not happen in one day. Or even to me, exclusively. But each incident occurred in our district over the past ten years. Scary, huh? That's why I hate to be gone.
Well...that, and OCD.