Windy's Page for Thought

I will ramble here if I can

Friday, August 30, 2002

Ok, I have 4 days in at work! It is much harder than I originally thought. The kids are just kids, but at a lower level than I'm used to working with. They also have very different needs. Most of the children have a hard time sitting still longer than 20 minutes. They love to be read to, as long as they like the story. They really like the story I'm reading, "Bud, Not Buddy!" by Christopher Paul Curtis. He is an author from Flint, Michigan. The book is about a boy who is an orphan during the days of the depression. It is a good story. Anyway, I still don't know if I have the job, and won't know until Sept 9. If I get the job, I'll have my work cut out for me, but the pay will make it worth while!


Monday, August 26, 2002

Today I worked in a public school for the first time. I would just like to say, kids are kids! And they were great today. The children were really polite and very well behaved. I'm sure if I would have allowed it, they could have been all over me, but I was firm and they were great. I was supposed to teach language arts to 3 sections of students all day, but today at lunch we were told that tomorrow we would have our 1st class for the whole day. They are going back to self contained without even giving this new program a chance. It seems some of the older teachers were upset about the schedule change, and complained to the right people, the board! Well the board of ed for BV told Mr. Mosley that he had to drop the new schedule for the time being. It's ok, I don't mind being self-contained. I'm really hoping the teacher I'm subbing for doesn't come back.

Our weekend was great also. Melissa and Jeremy were up for a short time with JacLynn. We had a nice time at dinner on Friday and Saturday was really great. We were at the wedding and got to watch JacLynn while Melissa and Jeremy visited with their friends. We were glad to do it, and they were glad to have us. They returned safely home by Sunday evening.

That's it for now!

Friday, August 23, 2002

Yet another update!
I have a place to go to work on Monday. I'll be subbing at Buena Vista until September 9th. Mr. Mosley (he's the principal) told me he wanted me in that classroom. He wants an experienced teacher in that room. I was all over Saginaw today getting my paper work straightened out. Donna says the pay is really quite good, and Nat tells me that BV has the highest pay scale for teachers in Saginaw County. I do have the possibility of being called in for the job I interviewed for yesterday, and if that happens I'll check it out. But I think if the pay is good enough in BV and they want me, I may stay. From what Donna says, it could be more than twice as much as the office job has to offer.

On another note, Melissa and Jeremy are coming to town today for a wedding on Saturday. We're having dinner with them at The BT tonight.

Well, that's all for now!

Wednesday, August 21, 2002

Update on the job situation:
I haven't heard back from the Francis Reh Acedemy. Since school started 2 days ago, I don't think that is a good sign. I have heard from the accounting office. I have an interview tomorrow. I also heard that there is a job opening in the Buena Vista school district. I called the guy in charge, and he heard from 3 different people on his staff that I would be great in the position, (it's 4th grade). He said they have to post the opening, but he would call me tomorrow. As I will not be home all day, I'll try to contact him sometime tomorrow. Maybe I can get an interview there. My friend Donna works there, and also a parent of a former student of mine. Both of them sang my praises, and the other person recommending me is someone I met briefly at Donna's Dad's funeral. Once again, say a prayer! I'm hopeful something will work out.

Yesterday when I got home from Saginaw, I mowed lawn. It is looking greener now that we have had a little rain. It went pretty quickly, as I did not bag the clippings. I canned some pickles after that, and finished up the pickles today. We have 40 quarts now, which is certainly more than we need, but Dave helped me pick when I went, and he hated to see a good cuke go to waste! We also have lots to eat fresh, but they are only good for so long. Anyway, if anyone would like some pickles, let me know! Also if you have some of my jars, just save them and give them to me when you see me next. Mom and Nat are pretty good about doing that, but I see them most so thats probably why.

Well, that's it for now,
Thanks for reading!
O&O blog buddies!

Monday, August 19, 2002

We had a wonderful weekend camping! The weather was great! We went tubing down the Rifle River, played horse shoes, and chatted around the campfire! It was difficult to pack up and come home on Sunday.

This coming weekend we have a wedding to attend. We will also get to babysit JacLynn later in the evening. The wedding is one of Melissa's friends and we are invited. We will stay for dinner and some of the after dinner festivities, but we are happy to be able to take JacLynn off Melissa's hands for a while while they stay for the dancing and such. The following weekend is Labor Day and we are planning to visit Mom and Dad in Scottville. Of course we are looking forward to that trip.

I haven't heard from the folks in the accounting office, but I did hear about a job in Saginaw, at the Francis Reh Acedemy. It is now a charter school. I dropped off a resume this morning and I have an interview tomorrow at 10:30 am. I'm praying I get the job!


Tuesday, August 13, 2002

All in all, today was a pretty good day. I got my pickles canned and my hair colored. While in Midland I applied for a job in an accounting office and updated my file at the Midland Public Schools.
We are getting ready to chat, so I'm off to the chat room. I'm glad I read bubba's blog, because mom thought it was weird that no one showed up for the scheduled chat! She missed the pm part, an easy mistake! I'm glad I caught up with her before the time!

Monday, August 12, 2002

Moving on!
I have resumes out to various school districts. Thanks again to Mom, who helped me put the finishing touches on it. I'm also going to try to get some tutoring jobs. (If any of my readers know of a student who needs help, contact me at: ) I will try to post a contact me link on my side bar. Besides what I'm doing on the job hunt front, I'm going to try to be more productive at home. The house should be cleaner and more organized, and I should realistically have more time to commit to working out. I was given some cukes over the weekend, and since my pickle supply is down, (last canned in '97!) I'm going to get those canned tomorrow morning! Certainly time to move on!


Saturday, August 10, 2002

I guess I hadn't realized I've been away from my blog for that long. Well, I'm updating now.

I've had school and church on my mind a lot lately. It's difficult for me to believe that a "man of the cloth" could lie to us they way he did. I know that the entire result is not Fr. Ron's total fault, but I feel he knew about it before we were informed. I also feel he knew about it as he was promising us employment. If he didn't know for sure, I'm sure he knew it was a possibility. I don't know how he could have said, "There is NO way, absolutely no way a school can be closed down that quickly!" Well, we found out, there was a way. I was raised to respect the priest and any other members in authority. I had a very negative experience with a Nun years ago with my first job. I thought she was just a bad apple. Now this. And, as much as I respected Fr. Richard, I feel he is also partly responsible for the mess the school was in. He should never have left the parish without firing Johnna. He should have at least talked to her about her people skills. Well, that's enough of that! Thanks for letting me vent! Of course this IS my blog, so I'm sure I can vent whenever I want to!


Wednesday, August 07, 2002

Well! I'm glad I was able to get the "BlogMonster" button on my page! I'd like to see some new members in the group!

I signed up for Unemployment today. Not the happiest day of my life, but we are thankful for the $ we have coming to us. I'm very thankful for Mom and her help and ideas regarding my resume. Hopefully something will turn up for me soon. I am actively looking for employment.

Over and Out blog buddies!

Tuesday, August 06, 2002

This is the article as it appeared inthe Saginaw News tonight.

St. Josaphat to close

Tuesday, August 6, 2002


Teacher Mary Kay Letherer-Harten cried while hugging her now former students and their parents Monday outside St. Josaphat Church in Carrollton Township after an hour-long parent meeting.

After weeks of speculation, it was final: St. Josaphat School -- one of Saginaw County's oldest -- will close.

Parish council members and the Rev. Ronald Dombrowski made the official announcement at the private gathering, noting that a last-ditch fund-raising effort to keep the school open fell short.

"It's so hard," said Harten, 42, a St. Josaphat middle school teacher the past four years.

Harten earlier this year turned down a teaching job at St. Thomas Aquinas because she was assured the 89-year-old Josaphat school would remain open.

"As a teacher, these students become your children," she said. "You develop a relationship with them and give them ownership of the classroom. We have had no closure on this.

"We didn't get a chance to say good-bye."

There just weren't enough funds and students to keep the parochial school going, Dombrowski said.

"Parish finances and the high cost of education were the ultimate reasons," said Dombrowski, who is in his second year at St. Josaphat.

"This is the saddest day in the life of the parish. We felt we just couldn't do it anymore. Once enrollment started dropping, our base was gone. This is a deep loss."

Marilyn Klenk, president of the school's PTA for eight years, said that last week's meeting was the death knell for the school.

"We knew it was coming," said Klenk, who with her husband, Kevin, have twin daughters transferring to Carrollton Elementary School.

School bleeding

Word leaked out two weeks ago that officials wanted to shutter the school, which took most families and parishioners by surprise.

A meeting last week confirmed those fears, but left room for a reprieve if enrollment improved and the parish could raise $170,000 in a week. Parishioners contributed about $98,000, but in the end it wasn't enough.

The church could have come up with the necessary funds if given more time, said fourth-grade teacher Linda Nowak.

"We were told a week ago and look, we raised $98,000," said Nowak, who taught at St. Josaphat for 21 years.

"They're trying to blame the parishioners for the school closing. They never told us how bad the situation was. The parents would have banded together. Give us a chance!"

With school starting in less than a month, parents were not waiting and began pulling their children out of St. Josaphat and signing them up at other schools.

Enrollment, as expected, dropped to 34 from 88 in a week.

"With the publicity, people started taking their kids out," said Dombrowski, adding that it was a "possibility" the school would have remained open if the parish had raised the $170,000 and enrollment remained at 88.

Silence hurts

One of the sharpest criticisms of church officials was that they did not tell parishioners and parents the school was in danger of closing until last week.

Officials said little because they hoped enrollment would turn around, said Dombrowski, who along with others contend they informed the community of the school's financial troubles last spring when they asked parishioners to increase their contributions by 10 percent.

The increases did not occur, he said.

However, residents and teachers maintain that school leaders never told parishioners and families the school would fold if they did not see the financial increases.

They also said the community would have reacted more favorably with contributions if they would have known the school could founder.

Even teachers, who raised concerns during the school year and as late as July, were told by Dombrowski the school would not close, Nowak said.

"We stayed out of loyalty," Harten said.

Nowak commuted everyday from Beaverton.

"I moved up north and continued to work here. That says a lot about our program," said Nowak, who like Harten is now looking for a new job.

Last week, Harten and her daughter, Jillian McManaman, 10, spent a day clearing out Harten's classroom.

"(Jillian) is very sad," Harten said. "She was teary-eyed and then she told me, 'Mama ... this isn't our school anymore."

What's next?

Like a host of other students, Jillian McManaman, a fifth-grader, will attend St. Helen School in Saginaw. Large numbers also will enroll at Carrollton Public Schools.

Still others may attend St. Thomas Aquinas and SS. Peter and Paul in Saginaw Township and St. Stephen in Saginaw.

Both Harten and Nowak praised St. Helen and Carrollton school officials for their efforts to welcome St. Josaphat students.

"They have been wonderful," Harten said.

St. Josaphat teachers, many of whom average about half the salary of their public school colleagues -- had indicated they would've taken pay cuts to keep St. Josaphat open.

Nevertheless, fifth-grade teacher Debbie Stanolis, 43, who now is unemployed, said she feels sorry for the students.

"My disappointment is for the children," she said. "They're losing friends, mentors and role models."

Parents will receive their registration fees back, said Dombrowski, who also pledged St. Josaphat Church will financially assist those families who continue to send their children to a Catholic school.

"We'll continue with fair share ... we'll help out as much as possible," he said.

Officials will release student records to respective schools as soon as St. Josaphat receives the request, Dombrowski said.

Church officials are not sure what they will do with the school building, which they will continue to use for faith formation or catechism classes, Dombrowski said.

Before leaving Monday, school staffers and volunteers took time to show the community their appreciation by changing the school's marquee to read:

"Eighty-nine years of love and support ... we thank you." t

Mike Rocha covers education for The Saginaw News. You may reach him at 776-9687.

I'm sure most of you have heard by now, but St. Josaphat School is no longer! It was quite an emotional meeting for us last night. Lots of kids and parents were crying and coming up to us teachers and thanking us for all we had done. One parent actually said, "Thanks for helping my 2 boys become the men they are today!" I was truly touched. Today was not easy either, I'll tell you that. But I do believe that when God closes one door, he will open another. (I am a little hard pressed to see God in this whole mess, however!) I went to unemployment, but the office is only open on Monday and Wednesdays. I will file tomorrow morning. We have to post our resumes on line, too.

In talking to some of the other teachers today, we decided to stay in contact with each other. We are going to try to get together once a month, or at least every other month. I am hosting the first get together next Thursday, and yes, Nat you are welcome to come. In fact I really hope you will be here. We decided husbands will be optional in the gathering!

Well, wish me luck in the job department!

Over and Out to all my good blog buddies!

Sunday, August 04, 2002

Well tomorrow is the big day. Nat and I will find out if we have jobs or not.

Today was just an easy laid back sort of day. We didn't do too much around here. I did some stitching and cooking. Nick was over again this weekend working on his car.

That's it for now!

Saturday, August 03, 2002

It's been a busy couple of days! Yesterday I kid-sat for Patti. David and I had a great day, and the dogs were even well behaved. I think Richard was a little afraid to go to work after he let the dogs in because Scrappy kept barking at me. She settled down though and most of the day the dogs just laid around. David was a great help when it came time to put the dogs in their outdoor cage for a bathroom break. We took a little field trip to my favorite cross stitch store, The Stitching Well. I didn't stay long because, well, because I was short of funds, but I bought a nice piece of fabric for my next project. We also watched Harry Potter and David played a video game. After lunch he did his homework and then we had a grand swim in the pool! I even got to hear David play his piano piece that he performed at his recital. All in all, Pat, I'd do it again! Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, Patti's bird Chika is talking! I heard him talk to Scrappy, and whistle! I was impressed!

Today we got out on the water at about 4:30. We stayed later than we ever did, but it was great to get out there and cool off. We played in the water and had a ride around Wixom Lake. We got home at about 10:45, but that was partly because we had to wait for some morons to get out of our way! Then when they got their boat out of the water they parked right in fromt of the launch pad. We could not get the truck down there until they realized they were in the wrong place to tie down their boat. We also played "Good Samaritan" while on the water. There were some people who were only out for their second time and they ran out of gas. We towed them in. There were parked in the same launching area we were so it was no problem.

Well, I'll most likely blog either tomorrow or Monday. One more thing, the flat tire queen stirkes again! This morning Dave went out to the yard and discovered the new truck had a flat tire! What a bummer! It had air in it on Friday evening when I got home, but it was flat this morning. There was no nail or glass, it just seems to be a slow leak. It held air today, but did go down by evening. Tomorrow Dave will take it to Edenville to get fixed.


Thursday, August 01, 2002

HEY! My page made the 10 most recently updated pages! I'm just surprised, that's all!

Well I got the grass cut yesterday, or should I say weeds! WOW! With the dry July we had, the only things that flourished in our yard were the weeds and the poppies! Thankfully the poppies looked good for a long while! I do believe they are now past their prime. Dave spent two evenings working on the Ford truck brakes. That left me without transportation for 2 days! Not that I would have gone anywhere, except to Meijer's, but it's just the idea. Anyway, today I finally made it to Meijer's, and wouldn't you know, I ran into 2 people I know! I can usually go there and never see anyone. Oh well, I was home by noon anyway!

That's it for now!