Christina M. Currie: Dream job, sort of |

Christina M. Currie: Dream job, sort of

Editor’s Note: Christina Currie is taking the week off to spend time with her family. This column was originally printed in the Daily Press on Jan. 4, 2008.

I want a job where I only have to work seven hours a day, 177 days a year. I want between three and six breaks a day. I want to be able to show up regardless of my performance and have a myriad of counselors and specialists at my beck and call, ready to help me succeed. I want lunch to be delivered to me and cost no more than $2.

Oh, yeah. I had that job for about 16 years. I didn’t hate it, but I did spend every single day trying to get out.

And when I did, what did I get? A job where I work 9 hours a day nearly 300 days a year. I have to get my own lunch, and it generally costs me about $9. It does pay better, though.

If schools exist to prepare children for life outside of school, shouldn’t school be more like life? I mean, there’s a big difference between my job as a student and my job as an adult.

Of course, part of my job as an adult is to ensure my children get an education. Trying to do that and the job that actually helps pay for that education is hampered by the fact that really, being a student is actually more of a part-time job.

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I can’t do both alone, so here’s what I need in an assistant:

“Wanted: A kind, patient, loving person whose topmost priority is to make sure that children (particularly mine) are happy, healthy, well-adjusted, cuddled, disciplined, read to, played with and spoiled, but not to the point that they behave atrociously in my presence, demanding things that you do, but I won’t.”

(This is a subtle jab at my aunt, who makes cinnamon toast cut into squares with the crust removed. 6-year-old Nikki considers me the worst of parents because I refuse to remove the crust from her toast “like grandma does”).

To continue: “Must be flexible. Will care for one child six hours a day and the other three hours – some days. On others, will care for one child eight hours a day. On others, will care for both children eight hours a day. On others, will care for one child from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Will care for children nine hours a day during all school holidays, which include fall break, Thanksgiving break, Christmas break, spring break, teacher in-service days, family connection days, teacher collaboration days, teacher workdays, days when there’s no school for no real reason, federal holidays and summer break. On other days, well, : I’ll be there when I get there.

“Some early mornings requested. Some late evenings required. Sometimes, I’ll need you to pick up the kids. Please consider yourself on call at all times.

“You will be expected to provide a nutritious lunch and healthy snacks every day. On some days, you’ll be expected to provide breakfast and dinner, too. P.S. My children are not fans of nutritious. They’re not fans of new, unusual or peanut butter and jelly, either, so you’ll have to figure something out.

“You will present model behavior at all times. Your house will be safe and tidy. You will provide games, toys and activities.

“Position does not pay minimum wage and comes with no benefits other than the satisfaction of a job well done.”

Any takers? Seriously, between me, you and the schools, I think we got this raising children thing whipped.

Come on. Anyone?