Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Forty-Two--Starting My Career

As I remember this incredible journey that I have had in my career, it takes me back to my first job at Gilbert Junior High School.    When I started back in 1971, there were 11 teachers at GJHS.   I was hired to teach 8th grade special education.   Martha Wallace was hired at the same time to teach 7th grade special education.   We were the only new teachers with a very established faculty.   Gilbert Junior was located in the present District Office.   Believe it or not, there were only about 800 students K-8 at the time.   All of the District schools were in the same area.   Mesquite Junior High was Gilbert High and Gilbert Elementary was Gilbert Elementary.   All of the students ate in the same cafeteria--staggered lunches. 

I did work with an intern that first year who was interning in Counseling from ASU.  Her name was Kay Sevill and she is now Kay Huston.   We are still friends!

I learned so much that first year.   It was a tough group of kids and I wasn't that much older than they were.   I think I got about five years of experience all in one year!!!  I worked with a great faculty who were incredibly supportive of me in my first year as a teacher.    

Special education then looked much different than it does today.   There were no IEP's, not much testing, and kids were just placed.  It wasn't until later in the 70's that "rules" were put into place--which was a good thing.   

I learned that year that no matter what happens, it is extremely important to follow through and do the very best job you can no matter what the circumstances.  That has carried me well through the years and I am so glad to have learned this valuable lesson my first year as a teacher!

1 remarks:

Nancy Proffitt said...

Congratulations Sheila ~ you've had a wonderful career!