22. April 2014 · Comments Off on Students and Illnesses · Categories: Ramble, Teaching

I’ve had two students cancel lessons due to illness this week. The first emailed me today, after having a lesson yesterday, canceling next week’s lesson due to a contagious disease… one that should be avoidable with immunizations. Hmm. I’m glad I didn’t touch any reeds!

Update: The student has been immunized. He’s one of the unfortunate 2% who still caught the illness. So very rotten for him and I hope he improves quickly!

My income depends upon healthy students who attend lessons diligently. I charge by the lesson, which is different than many instructors, because I know I have to cancel lessons on occasion and I don’t have the time to schedule make up lessons much. Of course no student means no pay. Believe it or not, my income from teaching is higher than income from opera or symphony. I don’t like to lose the teaching income, but such is life. Kids get sick, and if the illness is communicable I’d prefer they stay home. Some things, though, might be unavoidable if students have been immunized. I’ve never thought to ask if they have done all the recommended (required?) immunizations: I’ve always made the assumption that they are up to date on them all since they are in school. Now I’m wondering, though, if I should be asking this. I’m uncomfortable doing so, but I’m also uncomfortable knowing they might bless me with some illness that shouldn’t even be around these days.

When I started teaching at UCSC I decided to make sure I had the hepatitis vaccinations. It just seemed a wise thing to do. Our children were required to have them to attend college. Surely a teacher should too, then. Or at least it seemed like it to me. My doctor had no problem scheduling me for them. I get my flu vaccine every year. I prefer staying healthy, and I also don’t want to share any illnesses with students or colleagues. I like to share … but illnesses aren’t something for sharing. Right?

Do any teachers read this blog? If so, do you ever think to ask about immunizations? Do you worry about that at all?

In other news: being in the middle of the opera run means my brain gets a little fried. In order to help with that I try to get out on good long walks, or go somewhere with my camera. Today I went to Filoli gardens. What a lovely way to spend the morning! I don’t usually share flower photos here, but they are over on the pattyo. Today, though, I’ll share one. Just because.


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