Can teaching ever be 9-5?

(85 Posts)
nappyrat Thu 06-Feb-14 22:09:39

Is it a good option for fitting work around having a family like a lot of people think...or is that just not the case anymore? I hear of teachers doing such long days and so many extra duties. Just wondering if it can really work as well as people say if you have children?

Euphemia Sat 08-Feb-14 07:44:48

I teach in Scotland and we're under much less pressure. Still long hours though, and no flexibility to attend nativity, sports day, etc.

Bloody love the holidays though!

I'm lucky in that I work in a three-class school where we are all similar ages and all have school-age children. The HT has two small children and two older step children, so she's very flexible and understanding.

Philoslothy Sat 08-Feb-14 07:45:18

It is not 9-5 but I find it very family friendly. I went into teaching because I wanted more time with my chiidren and that is what I got. I think it does depend on your school and subject.

Once a week I leave for 4pm and have the whole evening free until the children go to bed. Other evenings I am home for just after six but again have a few hours of family time before working. The holidays are also very valuable family time.

feelingdizzy Sat 08-Feb-14 09:38:57

So it does look like teaching hours are longer and more stressful in England.You should all start a revolt .When I taught in England,it was very much you had to be seen to be working,ehhh,no I am 39 years old with 15 years experience.We teach the kids to work independently so you can trust me! Teaching is hard work but when I read the pressure that teachers from England are under it seems horrific.Apart from anything all this data monitoring doesn't work,doesn't push up standards.
Working longer at something doesn't make up better,just more tired.
Flowers and wine to you all .

teacherwith2kids Sat 08-Feb-14 10:25:51

I do think it varies hugely between schools, phases and subjects.

A school fighting to get out of / not drop into Special Measures / RI is likely to involve some very exciting hours.

Any school going through a period of change will involve longer working hours - the new National Curriculum will involve completely re-writing many schemes of work in many schools, which puts a burden on subject leaders. In small primarties a teacher may head up 3 or 4 subject areas. Equally a new head or a push towards an upcoming Ofsted will increase hours.

School culture also varies. In some schools, it is expected that schemes of work and resources will be re-used from year to year with little modification. In others, either due to variable cohorts, mixed age classes or simply 'this isn't the way we do things here', such recycling is seen as less acceptable.

From observation, the daily grind of primary is somewhat higher than the daily grind of secondary in many subjects - for one thing, a typical day in a 30 pupils primary school class may produce 90 - 120 pieces of work to mark - BUT secondary has more dramatic peaks and troughs in marking load.

Wihin secondary, workload will vary greatly between subjects.

phlebasconsidered Sat 08-Feb-14 10:54:09

Just finished my first full week full time. I dropped my kids ( 5 and 6 years) off to breakfast club at 7.45, at work at 8, left at 5 ( having done some marking and prep), picked kids up, home, made tea, kids to bed by 7, hours rest then worked till about 10ish, collapsed in bed, up at 6 again. Just spent the morning planning, more or less finished literacy, have maths to do, plus 30 assessment Big Writes to mark. Did the maths before leaving on Friday. Tonight I will have wine. Expecting to work Sunday morning to get the maths done. I am KNACKERED and the kids are miserable about being in afterschool club.

teacherwith2kids Sat 08-Feb-14 11:41:48

The thing that makes teaching family friendly for me is that 3-4 of my daily work hours can be 'moved' around the day / week.

So I move a chunk of then to children.

I move the rest (the unavoidable day to day marking and daily prep of resources / Powerpoints [can't be done in advance as plans change daily to respond to what children can do / understand] from 'continuous to the end of the school day' to 'after a 3 hour break of child contact time'.

In my old 'big firm' business job, I would be expected to work a 'continuous' day - say 8.30 - 6.30 or 7. In teaching, I can choose to work 7.45 - 4.15, to accommopdate e.g. music lessons, and then move the remainder of the working day into the late evening.

The real sufferer is not my children - it is my husband, as my contact time with him is minimal.

teacherwith2kids Sat 08-Feb-14 11:42:37

Oops, should read 'to Sunday when my husband klooks after the children'. Editing error.

Term-time working hours in English primary are insane, but the hols are time to recharge.

I'm at school 8-5.30/6ish and try to get most of the marking done in that time (certainly the maths and short-task English). At home I'll always have something more to do in the eve, but try to keep it to an hour, 2 max.

At weekends I mark the longer writing tasks and do next week's planning. Luckily I share this with 2 colleagues and we take it in turns to do maths / English / the Rest each 1/2 term. I'll spend most of Sunday doing this.

Parent consultations are coming up, so that's 2 later evenings plus the marking will have to be done later.

I do love it though! The hours are silly, but when a child 'gets' something new, writes something brilliant or thanks you for an interesting lesson, then it is worthwhile. :-)

PenguinBear Sat 08-Feb-14 15:43:23

I teach Reception and rarely have much to do at home. I get to school by 8am and stay at school till 4.30 - 5.30 each day (sometimes later if we have a meeting).
Try and not work at home during the week as I prefer to work through my lunch hour.
Every half term I do a whole work day and get it all done. Sometimes have more work around parents evenings etc

nappyrat Sat 08-Feb-14 23:10:30

thank you everyone that took the time to post, has given me lots to think over.

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