Leave No Task Behind

...If you’re returning to your current school after summer break, or moving on, a score of tasks are on the immediate horizon. As if final exams & report cards are not enough, there’s a zillion things you need to do prior to departure.

Tedious classroom inventories, equipment/materials return, preparing your room for potential maintenance crews & getting grades in on time can turn the last days of the school year into complete pandemonium. Add to this personal responsibilties such as travel plans & providing for maids, gardeners, phone/utility bills (if you’re returning after vacation) & the most organized among us can easily find themselves overwhelmed.

To complicate matters, some schools do not offer housing allowances for the summer months, prompting many returning teachers to give up their home to save money. This, of course, leaves the additional task of securely storing home/personal items until your return & then finding &/or renting new “digs.” If you have pets who are not joining you on vacation, the task can be even more daunting.

If you’re moving on to a new school, you have an especially difficult task ahead. In addition to the business of leaving your “old” school, you must arrange to ship your personal belongings, closeout cell phone/internet/utility accounts, collect deposits, sell the car/furniture, & perhaps hardest of all, say good-bye to dear friends. The big & little details of moving-on can be daunting & extremely time-consuming.

There’s far more involved in leaving a school for the summer break, or forever, than merely locking the door. Join us here to SHARE your must-do list, COMPARE experiences, ASK questions & OFFER ADVICE on how to leave no task behind.

  Ringo says: Well this time I am restricting myself to what I can carry on a plane – everything else has to go – a new way of living!

  Globetrotter1 says: We have had a similar problem with shipping to South America – an absolute nightmare – the cost of shipping was reasonable but the customs taxes (more than the cost of shipping) have forced us to have a major downsize. Most of our weight is books and clothes so we have had to take the hard decision of scanning most of our books. The remainder we will ship back to our home country and when we leave 3 weeks later for our next post we are all taking it on the plane (yes it sounds crazy but it is cheaper!). It helps to only fly with an airline which lets you take a lot on the plane!

  Allen says:  If you are returning to the same school, you may be able to store some items at the school. I was fortunate, my schools had a campus the size of a small university. If you are returning to the same apartment complex, you may be able to store items with the complex for the summer. Finally, friends who are staying for the summer or nationals that you taught with at your school could help you.

  Phil Johnson says: Having had 5 summers effectively homeless due to tenants living in my State-side home I recommend that if you can afford it, leave your house empty so it is there when you are bakc home. You do need a family member or friend to look after it though. Alternatively rent it for 6 months through the winter and get tenants to vacate afterwards, this adds to costs but at least you know where you are spending the summer.

  JMS says: Even when I am not moving on, I use the end of the school year as an opportunity to do some spring cleaning. I bag up old clothes or items I simply don’t use anymore and give them to my housekeeper or someone in need. I also come up with a summer “to do” list for my housekeeper, and give his number to the school so that they can contact him when they need to do the painting and repairs over the summer.

  Michelle says: My “old” school really helped out us departing teachers by allowing us to hold a “garage” sale–we made a party out of it and included the incoming staff by sending them photos of the bigger items (transfer of item for cash via the school), and one colleague sold their car to an incoming teacher. The parents also bought an amazing amount of our stuff plus brought music, treats, lunch and drinks galore for the all-day event. We got the word out to the neighborhood and the sale was a huge success!

Our flight, fortunately, is not until a bit more than a week after school ends and I’m glad we thought of that to give us time to unwind and finish up details of exiting the country and school/jobs. Our girls will have some play dates to fully say goodbye to their friends, too. I’ll be at home packing (while having a beer or two or…).

Another thing which is really helping is that I’ve hired trusted locals to come and help me clean our apartment, pack, sort, and dispose of unwanted items. This way they get a chance to make some extra money, while taking away some items themselves which can be sold or used in their own homes. They are also helping with languages difficulties when getting our deposits back from landlords, for example. These are people who have worked alongside us at school as aides and maintenance staff, so we’re also able to enjoy some more time with these helpers, our friends.

And finally, we were able to sell our car to a worker at our school, a good deal for him and an easy transaction for us. And, we get a ride to the airport with hugs and pleasant goodbyes!

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One Response to Leave No Task Behind

  1. Kicker says:

    To Malaysia shipping was cheap return huge…reason I was told everything is exported to the UK so containers are full. They have thousands of empty containers to bring back so charge pennies to fill them…The answer is take only stuff that is old and shaby and throw it when you leave…treat yourself to a Business class flight home and bring two full cases hand luggage and a computer bag and with some airlines a golf bag….happy traveling

    Like

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