Tuesday, July 08, 2008

It really is a hard job . . .

I blogged recently about how I do a billion field trips in the summer. Four afternoons a week I get to take the kids to a pool. Some of my co-workers,my friends and even my husband always remark about how it is such a koosh job. "Oh, I'll go the pool in your place. I'd love to get paid to swim" is what a hear almost daily. It is not relaxing since I am responsible for 12-20 children that BELONG TO OTHER PEOPLE. It is scary, sobering and stressful.

I hate having to call parents and tell them that their child had to be rescued by a lifeguard because they were struggling, or have the child tell the parent they went too far out and got scared. I am responsible for all these little lives.

Today, I knew a storm was heading our way. All the radar looked good, it looked like the storm would hold off until 3:00 or so. Wrong! We went to the pool and about 45 minutes later the black clouds began rolling in. I cleared the kids out of the pool and loaded them into the vans. By the time we got about 8 miles away the wind was crazy and there was a tornado warning. I had to pull into a church and ask to come in. Wierd thing? It was the church building we sold and moved out of last fall. The kids had to go in and get into tornado positions, wet in bathing suits, freaking out. They handled it pretty well. We were there about 45 minutes. When the warning lifted we headed back.

I really hated making those calls, but all the parents were fine and said, they knew we would do the right thing and that they trusted us and our judgement. They were happy that their kids were safe even though a small detour was made. It felt good knowing we are doing a good job and the parents trust us with their most precious possession.


Anonymous said...

Good work! I knopw that I could not handle your job. Not right now anyway. Just the thought exhausts me. I am glad there are awesome moms out there like you doing the work! ;)That was one heck of a storm today.

Janine said...

More a query than a comment. I'm in Australia and I think our teaching system works a bit differently than yours. I was a primary school teacher (fostering keeps me too busy now) employed by the State to work in a public school. The five to six weeks of Summer holidays was ours, paid, to do what we liked. In your State do you have to work in a holiday program during your school's summer break, or is that something you do voluntarily? Hope I'm not being too nosy, ignore me if you like ...just wondering how it all works.

Sheri said...

Our teachers can choose to be paid stretched over 52 weeks or only while school is in session.

I don't work for our state school system. I work at a private daycare that also does before and after elementary care and summer care. (And I get paid remarkably crappy! LOL)

When Dustin was still a foster child, we knew he would need constant one on one care, so my husband chose to be a stay-at-home daddy. It has worked out wonderfully. I don't know how two parents can work and take care of a child like Dustin.

And Janine . . . never too nosey around me! I'll share just about anything!

Janine said...

Thanks Sheri, that makes sense. You're lucky the reverse roles is working so well...it's not all guys that can do a woman's job - they're not always up to such a grand task!
And unfortunately jobs caring for children, no matter how much we acknowledge their importance, are never well paid. Same here in Australia.