Thursday, January 19, 2006


I started January, following the birth of Number Two Son, with a total of 19 sick and personal days saved up from my job at Oakland Unified. My sick and personal leave runs out on February 2. I finally got around to exploring my "options" for taking more time off. I thought I would be claiming disability (2/3 pay, right?). Turns out that OUSD doesn't pay into it. Options? This makes me sick: After my paid leave runs out, OUSD will still send a paycheck, but they will deduct the cost of my substitute teacher from it, to the tune of $111.05 a day for the first 14 days (then it goes up).

This takes my monthly paycheck down to little more than half its usual amount.

What galls me the most about this is that OUSD still hasn't gotten around to hiring my chosen substitute. She's a saint; she has been going in and teaching anyway (with the district hired sub in the room for legality). She's been in my classroom as a volunteer since September, so she was the obvious best choice for the kids. She knows the curriculum and the students. But she hasn't been able to do the correct flips and rolls the district requires in jumping through its hoops. The result? I've been paying her out of pocket *anyway* in order to retain her. Less than the sub rate, but still. She's a good person and good people should be rewarded, and she is doing me (no, not me, the kids) a tremendous favour.

But I'm getting shafted by the district both coming and going. So is she.

I spoke to the House Bean and he supports my decision to stay out for longer time. I'll take most of February off and we'll dip into the last little speck of my inheritance (Thanks, Grandma) to pay the difference. After all, Charlie is only going to be a baby for this very short time. And I'll be done with OUSD in five months*.

*Mostly done. The sucky thing about being a teacher (well, #45 on the list) is that every time I apply to a district for a job FOR THE REST OF MY CAREER is that I'll have to get a verification from OUSD for the time I spent teaching here. And for that they can suck my big stinky toe.