My second year at my last job was an absolute nightmare. It felt like everything that could go wrong, went wrong. Miscommunications, accusations, and absolute madness. It sucked, and I couldn't get out of there fast enough.

That year, they had hired a new teacher. She was around my age and hadn't taught before. She was stunningly beautiful, thin, and a heritage speaker of the language we both taught. She swept in and taught higher level classes (ie, the ones where management issues are less likely because kids request to be there). In spite of my near-native proficiency, I was stuck in the intro levels (AKA the required courses no one wants to be in so kids took it out on me). Our experiences that year seem to have reflected that sad reality.

That year she toed the line of appropriateness. One day she wore the shortest of shorts to work. Note this was a high school, so uhh, hello bad idea. Nothing happened. Meanwhile I got pulled aside once because my shirt was "too low", even though you could see no cleavage. Ooh, clavicle, what a scandal! There were also rumors that she said inappropriate things to her students, and that she was sexting at work. Again, nothing happened. I had kids literally flip me off and curse me out, and it was my fault.

Advertisement

I found out through the grapevine that she's fairly well connected, both among the Board of Ed at the district and in education at large. Apparently her mom was a big shot as well.

Fast forward to today, and I randomly poked around the internet for my old colleagues. I found her LinkedIn. She's still at the job, teaching AP classes. She's also a PhD student in the city (she inaccurately lists herself as a "PhD candidate", even though that's usually limited to students who've already passed their comps — she has not). She's presented at academic conferences (to be fair, so have I, but nothing super prestigious). I just found out that she's had an article published.

I want to cry/scream/break things. I am filled with a rage I can't even describe. It's part jealousy, to be sure, because I WANT TO BE PUBLISHED, but it's also part anger-at-the-system. Obviously she's a hard worker, but I feel like I bust my ass and get nowhere.

I have no idea why this bothers me so much.