I asked for a third science teacher for Christmas, and
If we do hire someone, I think I will have them just observe for the first week, then observe and assist during the second week, and begin taking over teaching duties the third week, after they've absorbed a sense of what the kids and the school are like. In some ways, it will be really hard for everyone to have a new (brand new) teacher begin mid-year, especially with a difficult group of kids. On the other hand, a brand-new Teaching Fellow is likely to be motivated to start off on the right foot, and at this point, I feel like the fact that no one really has complete ownership of the 7th grade science classes is cheating the kids of a great education. I'm doing all right with them, Mr. Richter's doing all right with them, but we each have another full grade demanding our attention, and I have grade leader duties as well. It would be great to have someone take full responsibility for their science education, for all the 7th graders, someone who would plan the lessons and do them with all three classes... even if the new teacher required a lot of support, it could still be better.
Also, as my AP pointed out, if I get the Fulbright and am teaching abroad next year, we will have one third-year teacher (assuming he stays for a third year!), one teacher from another country, and --- who? If we could fill the 7th grade position now, we could begin to get that person up-to-speed before I leave, making next year a lot smoother.
I had promised myself I would not allow my hopes to be raised about filling this position; they've been dashed so many times this year and so much energy has gone into the search. Yet here I am, rambling on about how we'll integrate the new teacher...
In other news, I am finding it nearly impossible to concentrate on the work that I have to do for school, grading, planning, any of it. *sigh*