Random Notions and Stories of Teaching

April 29, 2006

Loyalty

Where's the loyalty in today's work place?

Employees are expected to remain loyal to their employer. This means different things to different employers. It could mean everything from not speaking negatively about your employer publically (which I believe is called being a professional) to other things where you think of the company before yourself. Let me cite three examples.

Example #1: Hokie Hubby

Hokie Hubby has worked for The College for a year and a half. He gets paid for the coaching season (August through December). However, he spends time during the spring helping Head Coach prepare for Spring Ball and the coming fall season. He does this without compensation.

Upon asking for the opportunity to take one course at The College per semester, Football God/Athletic Director was livid. "We pay you as much as any assistant coach at this school," were his exact words. Um. As a matter of fact, not only is HH the lowest paid assistant coach at The College he is the lowest paid assistant coach (soccer assistant, anyway) of the entire conference.

He wants to do the job right - to put in the time required to do his job well, in hopes of getting a full time position when Head Coach leaves. However, I am left wondering if he isn't hurting himself because he's showing that he will work at the lower cost. Why pay him more?

Example #2 - My father

My dad has worked for his current employer for 25 years. Up until several years ago (5, I believe), this company was family owned (coincidentally, by some of our extended family). However, now that the company has been sold the working environment has become increasingly difficult. My dad believes they are trying to "force out" the older workers, my father, because they make the most money.

This company has gone from a wonderful family owned, customer focused, worker friendly workplace to a bottom line corporation. If you're costing them money, you must go. Someday, when he retires, I will write about the injury/workman's comp situation he was in several years ago.

Example #3 - Me!

I have been a substitute for one district for the past three years. I chose not to branch out into other districts because I felt I could hurt my future chances of employment in this district if I became "unavailable".

I have been a reliable sub for this district for three years. I'm not picky. Call me the night before - sure, I'll sub. Call me the morning of - sure, I'll sub. Call me at 10 o'clock when school starts at 8:30 - sure, I'll be there as fast as I can. I work my ass off for this district. I volunteer my time to teachers and principals and I teach summer school.

Before this year, I planned my life around work (much like I will when I have a permanent position). "Sorry, I can't have my doctor's appointment at 1, it's a school day. I need an appointment after 4."

HH believes this is "my year" to get a job. However, I know of only 3 teachers who are retiring this year and there are still at least 3 staff members who were previously RIFd to replace them. I'm not counting on the district bringing back the classrooms they phased out due to the levy failure. Why would they? They've seen they can operate with fewer classrooms.

I have some hope that I might get a position at my mother's school. The teachers know me there and like me. The principal knows me and hires me every year for summer school (so far, knock on wood). However, mother says she doubts I will get a position there because it might seem unfair.

So I ask you, dear readers, where is the loyalty? Where!?

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