My career as a teacher’s aide….

Twenty-five years ago I took a semester off from the law firm and worked as a teacher’s aide at 11 Texas school districts. Let me explain.

Child Number One had already left the nest and Child Number Two had dropped out of high school. Number Two was a smart kid and I found it hard to believe that he had such disdain for formal education. He told me, “Dad, you can’t imagine how boring it is.”

My aunt had died and surprised me by leaving me a sum of money that was just the right amount to support my family for a few months. So I decided to take an unpaid sabbatical from the law firm and see for myself what was going on in our public schools. I reached out to a number of superintendents that I knew and asked if I could spend one week in the district working as an unpaid, voluntary teacher’s aide. My plan was to do this in a wide variety of districts—big and small, urban and rural, and geographically all over the place.

I’m going to spend the next several Fridays here at the Daily Dawg to tell you about what I remember from my adventures. My travels took me to Liberty Hill, Leander, Southwest, Presidio, Keller, Huntsville, Lubbock, McAllen, Hallsville, Killeen, and Houston. I hope you find it interesting.

By the way, if any of you are thinking “he’s making this up”….I’m not. One friend from Region 6 told me that a colleague of hers who she would not name insisted that this must be community service after a DWI conviction. Nope. I did this voluntarily. And I’m glad I did.

We’ll begin our travelogue next Friday. First stop: Liberty Hill ISD in the language arts class of the elementary school.


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