I have wondered what I am going to say when this moment arrived. I have, admittedly struggled with this decision and worried at length that I am abandoning my principles and my convictions. I had hoped I had something deep and meaningful to say, some powerful statement to offer up as a remembrance of my thoughts but none occur.
Today is my last real day as a teacher. I haven't worked as an educator in a classroom in nine months and have been unaffiliated with any school district for the past six. This date marks the end of my membership in the BC Teachers' Federation which means, essentially, I'm just some guy now.
I spent four of the past ten years teaching in a classroom, one year as a First Nations Support Worker and six years waiting for calls to work. Basically, on one level, I can't afford to teach anymore. On another level, the challenges, many students I worked with, faced took their toll on me and I found the need to take breaks to try and recover my own health. I struggled, and continue to struggle, with depression and it takes a lot of the fight out of you. Add to this, the politics of working in district and the challenges imposed by the BC government and I found myself losing ground and my own identity.