If you make it to the end of this, please let me know how you would handle this situation. (And yes, I know it may not be the best idea to write all of this in a post, but at this point I'm not sure I care...)
I'm a teacher, and have been working at the same school for three years now. All during the past three years, my direct supervisor has been really nice and encouraging. He has written me glowing evaluations, told me what an excellent job I'm doing, and has never had any major criticisms of me (in all honesty, he should have had SOME criticisms...but no, he didn't).
A few months ago, my supervisor pulled me aside and told me that he would not be recommending me for tenure this year. Which means that I'll be out of a job once this year's contract runs out. He basically told me that I was an "A" quality teacher, but not an "A+" quality teacher, and right now the standards are really high and he's being discouraged from granting anyone tenure, blah, blah, blah... He actually cried when he told me. I know he feels bad, and I know he's got the right to make the decision he made (legally, he can let me go for no reason at all) but I still think the whole thing is lame. I think it was cruel, misleading, and a little short-sided to gush over the great job I was doing for three years, only to tell me at the last minute that I'd have to go because some magical spark was missing.
In the few months since, I've been coming to work everyday, doing my best for the kids and trying to remain professional. My supervisor continues to be very nice and try to make small talk with me, but honestly, I don't feel like talking to him these days. I'm always polite with him, but short. And I avoid him whenever possible. TO make matters worse, about a week ago my supervisor walked into my classroom at the end of the day and announced that he was having a little going away party for me, with a "Good Luck" cake and everything. Only a few of my coworkers actually showed up (if I were them, I wouldn't have showed up either). The whole thing was humiliating. I mean, who wants to celebrate NOT getting tenure? Who wants a cake to remind them they won't have a job for next year? I know my supervisor meant well, but I thought the whole thing was in poor taste and frankly, downright bizarre. And I don't want a cake from him right now. He's deciding to let me go; he doesn't get to still cheer me on and be my friend.
Today is the last day of work, and I'm not sure how I should behave. It's a short day; I just have to stop in for a few hours, pick up my last check, and have my supervisor sign me out officially. My question is, if it were you, how would you act towards this guy? I have no desire to be out-and-out rude (that wouldn't help anything anyway, and could only hurt), but I'd prefer not to act like everything between us is perfect, either. I know he's probably going to try to say some things, wish me luck, thank me for the great job I did, and a lot of other meaningless things. I'd really like to cut all of that as short as possible, but again, I don't want to burn this bridge completely. How would you handle it?