Let’s Talk: Transitions
By Gail Kablau
It seems like we were just welcoming the new class into a new school year, and all of a sudden it’s Graduation. The school year happened so fast. While we still have a few weeks to go until the end of our school year, we are already planning for next year. So, it’s a natural time to think about transitions.
Planning for next year brings some important transitions in our school district with a new superintendent, new school board members, and a new High School Principal, coming on board. While transitions like this can be stressful, not knowing what to expect from new administration, I like to think of it as a time to reflect on where we have been with the current administration, and of all the great possibilities there can be with new people who bring new perspectives. I’m excited about those possibilities.
But first – we have to get through these last few weeks – celebrating our retirees, saying good-bye to those who are leaving the District, and making sure our students have reached their final goals for whatever grade they are moving on to next. Working at a High School brings with it the excitement of graduation, as well. I look forward to the graduation ceremony each year, watching all of those students who have grown so much in the last four years making their final transition out into the real world. There are a few students this year that I have been closely associated with throughout their high school career that have tugged at my heartstrings. I’m truly going to miss them. Note to self: don’t forget to bring Kleenex to the graduation ceremony.
The end of the school year brings transition for many education support professionals who are 10-month employees. Whether it’s time with your children who are off in the summer, starting summer employment, or working summer school, that is also another transition you have to think about. Again, another transition that can be stressful, but also offers opportunities to try new things, have some fun, or just work with a different group of people. I am a 12-month secretary, so my summer is spent getting ready for next year’s transitions. Whatever your summer brings, I hope the transition is a smooth one.
I find that summer can also be a great time to reach out to other support staff local unions. Finding a time to sit outside over a cup of coffee to talk about how we can transition successfully into next year can be easier if we work with others to bounce ideas off of. Whether it’s as simple as planning your annual membership drive, or as major of a transition as having to start over as a Local Union, I want you to know that I am here to help. Not only as your ESP representative on the WEAC Board, but as someone who knows what it’s like to re-organize a Local Union, and then transition, not once but twice, into a merged Local.
So many of our ESP locals have struggled since Act 10. The continued work of recruiting new members is not easy, but if we keep at it, and work together, we can grow our ESP Locals again – one member at a time. Do you need help getting started, or just getting re-energized? I’m here to help with your transition.
Contact Gail Kablau at: firstname.lastname@example.org