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July 10, 2008

Saying Good-bye

The end of any school year is a time for letting go, moving on, and saying good-bye, however this year it will be bittersweet for me. After 15 years in pre-k I will be leaving my classroom and students behind to become a Pre-K Instructional Facilitator. In this new job I will no longer have my own classroom, but I will be expanding my impact to all the pre-k students in our district by working directly with their teachers.  In addition to leaving my classroom behind, I will also be saying good-bye to Pre-K Now as a regular blogger.   My new job brings with it new demands; I will no longer have a classroom from which to draw my anecdotes. Therefore, I feel it best to pass the torch to another pre-k teacher who can give Inside Pre-K readers the time and attention they deserve.   

I am very excited that my district chose me to be a part of this cutting edge decision. The creation of the Pre-K Instructional Facilitator position is proof that pre-k is moving ever closer to the forefront of educational awareness. When an urban district as large as mine, operating with a $12 million deficit, opts to fund Pre-K Instructional Facilitators it’s a sign that pre-k has finally made it, somebody is finally realizing the importance early childhood education plays in the big picture.

Believe me, this decision was not an easy one to make, but I've never been one to turn down an adventure. I look at this as yet another stop in my journey as an early childhood educator. I will try not to dwell on the things I will miss, but rather look forward to the new adventures I will have.    Although I may be absent from the classroom and Pre-K Now, I can still be found at my website, Pre-K Pages should you ever need to contact me.

I am not big on good-byes, so instead I have written a letter to the teacher who will replace me, whoever he or she may be:

Dear New Teacher:

Congratulations and welcome to your new classroom! I hope you enjoy your time here as much as I did. As you embark upon this new journey in your life I thought I would share some tips and tricks for making your transition to our school as easy as possible:

  • The principal: If this is your first job consider yourself very lucky because you just won the jackpot lotto of all principals! He plays fair- do your job and do it well and he will look out for you. If he had a motto it would be “no whining!”- so don’t bother.
  • Your co-workers: Once again, if you are a first year teacher you just won hit the jackpot again! What are the odds? You have the best co-workers in the entire district. They are the most knowledgeable, helpful, and hard-working bunch around. Treat them with the respect they deserve and they will do the same for you. Never be afraid to ask them a question, that’s what they’re there for.
  • The custodian: He is your best friend! We have the world’s best custodian and he is to be treated as such.
  • The secretary: The secretary is the real boss of the school; don’t let anyone tell you differently. She loves chocolate so keep that in mind when your ink cartridge runs out in your printer.
  • The copier: The most important item in any school building, treat it kindly and it will produce copies on demand. On the other hand, if you cuss at it, it will break- Murphy’s Law.
  • The Teacher’s Lounge: Just two words- Stay Away! The number of cockroaches that reside there are greater than the number of students in the school (700)

As with any job, there will be bumps in the road along the way, and days when it’s smooth sailing. On those bumpy days lean on your new school family and they will help you through the tough times.

Best of Luck,



I hate to be snarky, but how good is the custodian if the teeacher's lounge is full of cockroaches?

Good luck in your new job, Vanessa!

Congratulations, and THANK YOU, not only for the information you have shared here, but for the early childhood advocacy that you'll continue to provide to not just one classroom, but ALL of your district's ECE rooms! You'll still have anecdotes, just make sure you get to observe and work in rooms while the kids are there!


Congratulations on the new position. I've enjoyed your articles here and comments on atoz forum. Your websit is awesome and has been a great help to me. Will you continue adding information? Such as ways to incorporate the new Texas Guidelines? Thanks for all information you have shared. Angela

Congratulations! I am a teacher who has spent many nights being inspired by your website and incorporating many of those ideas into my classroom. I hope you will continue to add information to your website??!! Thanks!

Bye Vanessa! I loved reading your posts and I know you'll be up to great things!

Tina, the former Pre-K Now Comm. Fellow

Bye Vanessa! I loved reading your posts and I know you'll be up to great things!

Tina, the former Pre-K Now Comm. Fellow

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