This is the time of the year when I am sick of my job. Still lagging from the holiday season (and three-week vacation), kids still not focused, shit weather and me wondering about what I want to do next year. It’s a weird balance – half of me (well, a little more than half) wants to stay in Spain while the other half wants to move on, move somewhere new and try something different. After all, I won’t teach English my whole life, and if I do continue for another year or two, why not do it on the beach in Thailand or near the Patagonia in Chile?
This year has been different in so many ways at school, despite already knowing my students and their abilities well and having the newer members of the staff be even more welcoming and inclusive to me than last year. But I feel much more integrated OUTSIDE of the English department. Because I devote nearly half of my hours specifically to the Bilingual group, I generally only have class with the teachers once every two weeks. For instance, Valle no longer takes me to school, so I had no idea she’s traveling to India in Nepal in a few weeks!
This year it’s been easier to measure success. I can note the progress some students and many teachers have made since I arrived last year, even hearing more English in the teacher’s lounge than last year. Many greet me with “Hello” instead of “Hola” and I’ve been correcting homework and copying extra worksheets because people have been more interested in learning English. Very cool.
So, you can imagine my disappointment in learning that the Junta de Andalucía, my employer, is not guaranteeing that I’ll have a job next year. I’m welcome to reapply, but since they’re cutting the positions in half (that’s to say, one assistant at each school instead of two), it’s likely I’ll get ousted in favor of a new applicant. I’m just about done with my reapplication and am keeping my fingers crossed. After China, I’m going to start tackling all of the private schools in the area to see if they’re looking for a language assistant of sorts. De todas formas, I’m staying put in Spain for a while longer. I’m not done here yet.