Just when I thought it was getting better

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Californiablonde, Jan 18, 2018.

  1. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Another job complaint. If any of you are sick of hearing about this, (and I don't blame you) please scroll past. I do believe I posted some time last year of accepting my job duties, although I didn't like them, and being willing to continue at my job until I retire in 4 years. I thought I could keep handling this. Well I must have been hypomanic back then or something, because I am back to tearing my hair out (literally.)

    I don't know why this is, but since my boss starting working here three years ago and started having us make these dreaded calls, I have had WAY more absences on my list than my coworker has. We both split up the alphabet. I take last names A through L, she gets M through Z. I have always had a lot more absences and phone calls than my coworker. The first year, I thought I was just having a bad year of bad luck. Then last year, same thing. I had an exorbitant amount of phone calls compared to her. This year, just as bad if not worse.

    I have no idea why. It's just random. Today, for instance, I have had a huge list, and I've been making calls all day, and she has only had about FOUR. Remember, I have to call both the parents' cell phones, the home phone, and the family members and family friends to try and find out why they're absent. If I have 30 kids on my list, times that by 4 and that's how many calls I have to make for the day.

    The parents also get that automated call at night stating, "Your student, fill in the blank, was absent from periods blah blah blah today. Please call the attendance office with the reason for the absence." In other words, we are doing live calling and leaving voicemails, plus the automated call goes out, and guess how many people return the calls the next day?

    No ONE. I am serious. Calling all those people and leaving messages and calling the family members does not prompt the parents to call back. They couldn't care less about clearing the attendance, or if the kids have been ditching, they don't care to call and talk to somebody about it. I am fed up. I told myself last year, "Oh, only five more years till I retired. The years are flying by quickly. I can handle it." This school year, I am saying, "Four more years till I retire. The time is dragging by. I don't think I can make it."

    The absences get worse every single year, and I wish I could break it to my boss that all these phone calls are NOT helping. I am still looking for jobs at other schools, doing something else. So far nothing but part time teachers' aide jobs with no benefits, or things I am not qualified for. They want college degrees. Who knew, all those years ago, when I chose to drop out of college to have kids, that I would actually need a degree or some college education to get ahead?

    I certainly wasn't thinking back then. Getting a job outside the school district is not an option. I briefly played with the idea, then quickly dropped it after seeing what else is out there. It would be totally stupid of me to leave the district, with it's great medical benefits and retirement plan, when I can retire in 4 more years. I just wish I didn't feel so defeated.

    My coworker, who is in charge of half my department, loves her job. She doesn't mind the phone calls (and why should she? She has way less to make than I do!) She says she loves coming to work and she loves the routine. She gets bored in the summer. She can't wait to come back. Why can't I be like her? Why am I cursed with this anxiety, that books, therapists, psychiatrists, and medications haven't helped. Oh, and prayer. I forgot lots of prayer. Is this a punishment? I just feel like ranting today. Hopefully my attitude about this job changes quick.
  2. AppleCori

    AppleCori Well-Known Member


    Is there any way to ask the co-worker to help with the phone calls? Maybe you could offer to do some of her non-phone-call tasks in exchange?

    Retiring in four years, before age 50, sounds pretty great! A lot of people would love to be in your shoes.

    I do think you are getting better, Cali. You seem to be handling this job and the stresses better than you did a couple of years ago.
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  3. Lil

    Lil Well-Known Member

    I was thinking, a lot of places that split case loads by people names alphabetically switch out every little bit. A-L for her, M-Z for you for 1/2 the year, then switch. Evens it out if you happen to have a lot more people with S's than you have D's...you know?
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  4. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Four years and you can retire.

    Focus on that. What a gift!
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  5. svengandhi

    svengandhi Well-Known Member

    I'm almost 60 and I have to work a lot more than four years before I can retire...

    Vent aside, maybe you can ask your co-worker to alternate the alphabetical list every week.
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  6. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    You, know, a few years back we actually discussed that. It was decided that since we get to develop a rapport with the same students and parents, it's best to keep dealing with the same part of the alphabet. If only I knew then...sigh.
  7. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    I agree. I just hope these years go by quickly.
  8. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Unfortunately, I am the assistant, which means I already do most of the work and get almost zero credit. The perks of my job title. Yep.
  9. Californiablonde

    Californiablonde Well-Known Member

    Today is another reminder of why I hate my job so much. The day before finals, and my list was huge, full of students who didn't show up, or were VERY late. Just when it's vital they attend class, they decide to skip out for some fun. Of course some of the absences are legit, especially during this harsh cold and flu season, but many of them are not. And wouldn't you know it, most of the time my coworker's parents answer the phone. I have no idea why she gets so lucky. I am the one leaving voicemail after voicemail, in English and Spanish, because they never pick up the phone, and I am calling the family members, and still almost nobody returns the calls. The next day I have to make all of those calls all over again. My coworker is left with making only a couple follow up calls the next day, and I am stuck with tons. Monday, for instance, I have a huge list, and she has only ONE. At least the rest of the day should be easy. It will be the first day of finals week, and we only have two classes a day for four days, and Friday there is no school. I am taking a vacation day. I think I've earned it. For now, the weekend is here, and I will NOT be thinking about work.
  10. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    If you are leaving voicemails, why not get a little recorder, and record a message saying your student was absent today. Then when the machine picks up, you start your recorder and play it into your phone. Saves your voice and your stress. You only have to deal with the live bodies.

    Do you see your boss's desk, or is her office in a separate room? Just a question.