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I don't want to work full-time any more - what are my options?

(15 Posts)
Grockle Wed 05-Jan-11 10:03:55

I am a full-time teacher. DS started school in September and I hate not being able to take him or pick him up at the end of his day. Ideally I wouldn't work at all but I love my job and, other than being a SAHM, there is nothing I'd rather do but I am currently rather disillusioned with the paperwork, with the constant changes, understaffing, countless meetings and jumping through hoops. My performance management is the most ridiculous waste of time ever angry.

I am a single parent with a sizeable mortgage so I need an income. But I feel like DS is growing up and I'm missing it. He doesn't get to have friends home after school etc.

So, what are my options? I doubt my school would let me go part time and I have not yet plucked up the courage to ask if that is a possibility. I think I'd feel better if I were doing 4 days a week.

Or should I just give up altogether and find a local job as a TA (which I have done in the past) and have students in the spare room to help pay the bills?

I've always been interested in fostering so might look into that. I just don't know what to do.

hatsybatsy Wed 05-Jan-11 11:51:50

I thought your employer could only deny flexible working requests if they had a really good reason? The vast majority of people I know who have asked have ended up getting exactly what they wanted, because their employers basically could not prove that the change would cause serious problems.

if you don't ask you'll never know?

changing to be a TA doesn't sound like the right move - you'd still be just as busy (although with less paperwork?) but for significantly less cash.

Poogles Wed 05-Jan-11 12:10:36

You have the right to ask for a flexible work arrangement and legally they have to consider it. They would need to provide a business reason as to why they could not agree. If you can provide a solution when you make your request it will make it difficult for them to say no.

First argument they willl make is how they will cover the 5th day. Is there any other staff who could take over? Could you go to 3 days and find a job share?

maktaitai Wed 05-Jan-11 12:12:46

I think a job share sounds like a good way forward - what would be the minimum length of week you would need to work to cover the bills?

Saracen Wed 05-Jan-11 14:20:33

If you enjoy teaching and want to continue with that or a related profession, what about having a look on the TES forums where people discuss career options quite extensively?

I'm wondering whether you could have shorter working days if you worked as a peripatetic specialist teacher, or maybe in a college, but I'm not in the profession and don't really know whether those are options.

crazygracieuk Wed 05-Jan-11 14:21:47

There are quite a few job share teachers at our school. They are mums with young children or pregnant.

thehat Wed 05-Jan-11 19:34:05

I work 4 days a week as a Head of Dept. My day off means I can do the school run and have friends over after school. It is just one day, but really helps me juggle everything.

Perhaps you have somebody in your dept. who is looking to increase their hours/days, leaving you to drop yours? It is worth asking but most likely the opportunity to change your hours will come when the timetable is re written for next September.

Grockle Wed 05-Jan-11 19:52:43

Thanks. I might broach the subject with my HoD then. I think they will say that it will be unsettling for the children (SEN - SLD) which may be true but is no different to our HoD teaching 3 days a week and having 2 out of class to do other things.

I might be able to survive on 3 days but I don't think it would be ideal. I have the perfect scenario in my head and there is another teacher who wants more hours so... maybe? I think I just need to be brave and ask.

I cried before I went to work today sad but I loved it once i was there. I just think I'd feel more together if I had 1 day where I didn't have to rush and fret about DS and feel like a proper mother. Not that I'm not a proper mother now, I'm just a bit frazzled.

Grockle Thu 06-Jan-11 20:53:06

I said something today. Not quite how I planned but will see. It's not impossible but I might have to wait til September and depends on cover.

thehat Thu 06-Jan-11 22:09:29

Hope you get the result you want.

Grockle Thu 06-Jan-11 22:23:27

Thank you smile

Grockle Fri 07-Jan-11 17:01:10

Well today I was given an ultimatum, I think. Not sure what happened. My boss had a sympathetic chat with me, said they'd support me more and I should feel free to leave work before four 2 or 3 days a week and they'l address the staffing issue that is causing me (and others) most difficulty but if that didnt help and I want to do something else, to make sure I give them lots of notice hmm.

I may well have misinterpreted but feel like they said 'either do the job you have or leave. And if you leave, give us extra warning.'


thehat Sat 08-Jan-11 13:31:55

Well, I suppose they have listened to you and are trying to accommodate. In reality though, it is near on impossible to leave before 4 and keep on top of your job.

Perhaps they mean lots of warning before they start putting together the timetable and to give them time to advertise/appoint a new part time member of staff? That would be reasonable.

Grockle Sat 08-Jan-11 18:39:16

Hopefully that is what they mean. And you're right - it's all well and good saying I CAN leave before 4 but if I did, I'd never have everything done. And they'd not be too happy about that!

cat64 Sat 08-Jan-11 23:40:13

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