Op-Ed: Carol Ann Tomlinson: My Dream for This Extraordinary School Year

There will be an abundance of collaboration, accomplishment, and adventure.

Carol Ann Tomlinson

I landed my first job as a teacher through a newspaper ad at the end of the first quarter of the school year—aptly, during Halloween week. My new role began the following Monday when the assistant principal hastily led me to the end of a long, gray corridor, knocked on a classroom door, and said to the elderly gentleman who opened it, “Mr. Melton, this is your replacement. You’re fired.”

After that, Mr. Melton sat in the front of the classroom waiting for the day to end so he could join his carpool and leave behind his career as a teacher. I sat in the back of the classroom as five classes of high school students alternatively crawled in and out of the first-floor windows to socialize or invested their energies in igniting the fire-retardant bulletin boards.

Oddly, I found myself and my calling in that stressed and stressful place. Not on a single day after my tenure began did anyone use the window as an escape hatch, and I never again saw matches come out of pockets. Still, I had a recurring nightmare for a couple of months prior to the start of school over the next 35 years in which students made merry in the classroom while I seemed capable only of watching the mayhem.

This article was originally published and featured by EducationWeek. Read the full article here.

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