As I read this week’s Dawson County News, I was proud to see that Dawson County High School has 11 students who plan to become teachers. For that I commend you, Cadey, Jacalyn, Carley, Micaiah, Shae, Kaylee, Calli, Emily, Connor, Rob and Evie.
As a retired teacher, I have some advice for you:
1. Seek out a tenured teacher to help you, guide you and teach you.
2. Keep a copy of every paper you write, as you may refer to them when you attain those graduate degrees.
3. Join a professional organization such as GAE or PAGE. They have numerous opportunities for your professional growth. They will also provide you with legal assistance when the need arises. This is a litigious world we live in now and you may never need an attorney, but it will give you peace of mind to know you have it.
4. When people tell you that you are so lucky to get “paid in the summer,” explain to them that your salary is based on 190 days and is spread over 12 months. Few people get that!
5. Take your sick days when you need them. There is no shame in that.
6. Take pride in knowing that you have made a decision to make a difference in the world. Tom Brokaw, a famous journalist, once said: “It's easy to make a buck. It's a lot tougher to make a difference.”
Know that Georgia’s teachers are rooting for you and wish you the best! Congratulations on this milestone in your life.