Student Teaching Dream Turned into Student Teaching Nightmare
The final stretch of a earning a teaching license is the student teaching phase. This is the phase where the teacher candidate has to work in a classroom for a specific number of weeks for free. The teacher candidate begins observing and eventually takes the class on as his or her own. The number of weeks required to complete student teaching differs depending on the education program. My specific program and state require sixteen weeks. I was excited for this portion of my degree even though I would not get paid throughout the student teaching phase of my degree. It has however turned into a nightmare.
First of all, I had a lot of trouble finding placement. I requested several teachers as my mentor, but they all said they did not want a student teacher. It upset me because, well, they have all been where I am and need a mentor teacher now as much as they did when they were earning their license. I think they forget that someone had to take a chance on them. They are always available to mentor the student teacher, so really it should not be a problem. After several weeks of trying, I finally found placement in a new charter school in my town so, I was set and ready to begin my student teaching in the fall.
The next hurdle was finding funding to help me live during my student teaching days when I can’t work and earn income. I applied for a loss of income loan through my school thinking that there is no reason I wouldn’t get the loan. A couple of weeks before my student teaching was to begin, I found out from my college that they will loan me $150.00 for the student teaching phase of my degree program. Obviously, that will not pay my bills for six months, so I am not sure what I will do.
School in my area begins on the 18th of August. I went into my placement school on the 14th of August to learn about the school, help with some of the set up and figure out what my duties are as a student teacher. The school had placed me as an assistant teacher while I completed my student teaching which meant that I would really not have a dedicated mentor and I would actually have teaching duties before I even entered that phase of my program. This was a bit overwhelming, but I was ready to move forward and do the best I could.
On the 16th of August, the rug was pulled out from under me completely. The director of the school decided that they really can’t give me what I need to help me learn during my student teaching, because they are a new school and figuring things out this year. They terminated my student teaching which really puts me in a bind. I was supposed to start on the 18th and now will have to wait for my college board to decide how to move forward.
I am not sure what will happen until the College Board meets. I am not sure if I will student teach in the fall or the spring now. I am very upset over the entire process, and what was supposed to be an exciting phase of my degree program, has turned into a nightmare.