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معلم وتعليم

We Wish Every School District Would Welcome Teachers Like This

The first day of in-service is a time in every teacher’s life marked by the meeting of extremes. Worlds collide. Seasons end and begin.

It’s really wild if you think about it. In a single day, summer is traded for school year. Freedom is replaced with routine. The highest of high emotions … seeing school buddies! Getting your roster! The excitement of a new school year is tempered by having to wake up to an alarm, sitting through PowerPoints, and bracing ourselves for the chaos we know is coming.

There are all kinds of ways that schools try to bridge this transition. Providing breakfast. Putting memes in PowerPoints. Icebreaker activities. But even the best-laid plans are tough to carry out with a faculty who, at this hour of the morning for the last six weeks, were still deep in REM.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

This week, I found a TikTok about in-service I wish every school district would watch.

I’ve loved following @mschanggifted on TikTok. She’s funny, spirited, and a heck of a talented teacher. I’ve already added to her to the list of teachers I’d put in my dream school hallway to work with. (What, is that weird? Does no one else have a fantasy teaching hallway?)

When I saw the label “Pre-Planning Done Right” on one of her recent TikToks, my eyeballs perked up. A teacher endorsement of in-service? Is this real life?

When I read the caption, “Our administration got this right,” I was hooked.

When I heard her qualifiers that her administration provided something everyone loved and was free, my mind raced with possibilities.

Frozen banana stand? Not free.

Petting zoo? At least one teacher would complain.

An all-faculty screening of The Holiday? (OK I’m probably one of like four teachers who would love that.)

No. Listen to what Ms. Chang says her administrators gave them:


Our administration got this right #principalsoftiktok #backtoschool #mschanggifted #preplanning

♬ original sound – Mschanggifted

Why doesn’t every school start their in-service or pre-planning this way? We love the idea of giving teachers time to acclimate, plan, socialize, vibe out to their Spotify playlist, sit in front of a blank computer desktop for hours trying to remember what they do here—whatever they need to get into the swing of things.

We know administrators have to spend some time on housekeeping. Of course there are new district policies and initiatives to communicate. Of course it’s important to do all-faculty introductions and team building. But there’s no reason why that has to come before time for teachers to catch their breath a little.

Here’s what commenters had to say about this school’s decision:

The best gift

Comment via TikTok

This should be a universal standard!

Comment via TikTok

The message it sends ❤️

Comment via TikTok

Hang on a second

Comment via TikTok

We hope more schools adopt this approach! It’s teacher-centered, honors teachers as people, and lets everyone have a little more time to themselves.

Does your school do something like this? Let us know in the comments!

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