Are all school's the same?(15 Posts)
DS is in year 4 and is on his 10th Teacher with endless supply teachers in between. This year the Teacher has been off for the majority of the time, now a permanent supply teacher has been put in class until their return. We are always told they are following the curriculum. DS doesn't know where he is from day to day going into school. I am thinking of moving him to a different school, not sure if this is the right thing going into year 5 but feel on the other hand it could be the best thing we ever done. DH says you won't go to another one without there being problems there too?
Yes all schools are different, I moved my kids schools and the school is so much better my kids actually look forward to some subjects as they make them exciting, they also dont have a high staff turn over and all staff appear happy and helpful and engaging with the children, I would look into changing schools if I were you.
A term ago i’d have said no.... but DS (also Y4) ‘s teacher has been off sick since October and they’ve had various supply teachers instead. Minimal communication from school.
10th teacher within a term or in his school life?
If it's 10th teacher since September, that sounds mad, but if during 6 years(rec-yr4), not so much. Teachers become ill, or have a baby, or could be SLT who needs to work management stuff as well as in class, etc.
My ds(yr5)'s past 2 teachers were slt, so some days were covered by others, one went on maternity, one became ill. At least teaching was consistent, and I don't think he suffered.
AS long as they got long term supply, I don't think it's a huge problem. But if they are getting supply after supply, there maybe something wrong.
I’ve been in a class this week where they have had countless supply teachers. They employed a long term supply to start on Monday and she didn’t turn up on the day. That’s how I ended up there at ten o’clock or something. They asked me to to do three days a week until,Easter but after being there a few hours I realised I couldn’t stick it out because of the TA. She was completely obstructive as well as being negative.
I think it depends a bit on your area. If you are in an expensive area of the London fringe it's likely most schools will be experiencing a recruitment and retention problem.
If you live in the rural South West, you've just got a school with a specific problem and could probably move to one with more stable staffing easily.
I would say it's an unusual school (or you have too much influence) that you agree with everything they do. I like my dc's schools, but there are some things that I disagree with. Some of them I'm probably right about too.
However there are worse faults and better faults and that sounds a worse one.
DS doesn't know where he is from day to day going into school.
What do you mean by this? Is he happy at school? Does he have friends? Is he making good progress? If yes to all these, I’d leave him where he is and make sure you speak about the school in a positive way.
I found a gem of a primary, and in the 9 years I've been involved there, there have been minimal staff changes, three that I can think of.
I think asking about staff turnover is a really good first question. Staff stay put if they are happy, and then the kids have a much better chance of being happy too.
And I meant to say I wouldn't hesitate to change schools in year 4. Two years is a big chunk of a child's life, really worth looking for something better.
Nope all schools definitely are not the same. I moved my kids after DD1 had a shitty as hell reception in a school with some distinctly iffy practices going on, and I've got a fair like-for-like comparison going on as DD2 is currently in reception in the new school.
School 2 blows school 1 out of the water completely - I'm seriously jaw on the floor in awe of how bloody good DD2's Reception teacher is (I'm an ex-teacher myself and I'm bloody jealous of her levels of awesomeness with the class), and the whole feel of the place is just so different. Moving them was the best thing I've done. The head is fantastic too - the difference is so marked I sobbed my eyes out leaving after looking around the new school as I was so desperate for the kids to go there!
Staff turnover incidentally in the new school - pretty much non existent (apart from maternity leave covers etc)... staff turnover in old school - 14 teachers and TAs changed in September.
Sometimes it can be just timing or bad luck if the school is going through lots of changes at present. I have 2 DCs that had completely different experiences at the same school. DC1 had 3 different heads and most years there were staff changes due to sickness, maternity leave, job share changes and other things. DC2 has had the same head most of the time, amazing teaches and no staff changes.
No, our school has extra teachers employed full time and they take the strain if someone is ill.
Lots of schools cannot afford floating teachers now. However there are large differences between schools. Ofsted regularly highlight this in their reports. Read an Outstanding one and then an Inadequte one and you will see the differences they talk about.
Regarding constant change of supply teachers: it is unsettling. Children like continuity and different teachers who don’t know them is unsettling. It rarely allows children to make good progress and Ofsted frequently criticise schools that have large numbers of supply teachers because they have failed to secure high quality permanent staff which they believe to be the “gold standard”.
I think, therefore, you are right to expect consistent teaching. There is not a constant merrygoround of staff changes in the better schools and often teachers will not work with a poor SLT so I think the staffing problem is s symptom of other shortcomings. A good school with a good SLT will not have the same turnover and teachers will want to work for them. I think you should move. I would, even if it for just over 2 years.
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