Episode 156 Don’t you Dare Quit Teaching Until you’ve Read this Book…Starring Jim Mahoney


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By James Sturtevant. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.
It’s heartbreaking to hear about all of the talented educators who are strongly considering cashing in their chips and exiting the classroom. This is not a good thing. Their students need them and quitting may not be the right move for discouraged educators. I can say this with confidence because I vamoosed from education after my 7th year. I was fortunate to be able to hightail it back into the classroom after just a 6 month hiatus. If you quit now, you may never return even if you want to.
A few years after my rather intense exile. I had the opportunity to hear Jim Mahoney speak at a professional development. I was excited to hear him because he was the superintendent at my home school. I hadn’t met him yet, but my mom and dad knew him and they liked him.
2 sentences into Jim Mahoney’s presentation, I was hooked. This guy was engaging, funny, and highly relevant. I vividly remember one animated part of his presentation when he was talking about teacher frustration. He clenched his fists, scrunched his face, and then he empathized. As he was clenching and scrunching, he said the following:
When you folks (we were an audience of k12 teachers) start wondering, Why do I keep doing this?
The rest of his presentation was a powerful answer to this rhetorical question. It was a pure shot of educational areniline. I left that auditorium thinking, Man, I’m glad I’m back in the classroom. I’m not leaving again till retirement.
Jim and I later connected. We catch up with one another at least annually. I love the guy and I’m not alone. Jim Mahoney is education royalty in Ohio. His resume is as impressive as it is diverse. But that’s not why I invited him on this show. Jim just authored a book called To Lead is to Teach. If you, or anyone you know, are considering leaving the classroom, this book will probably give you hope and will at least give you pause. If you’re not considering leaving, read it anyway and be inspired and feel great about being part of this magical calling.

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