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Am I mad?

(16 Posts)
LouTheMac Tue 05-Apr-16 19:40:45

I need a new career and considering teaching secondary business studies as this is my degree subject and 12+ years related work experience.

However there are no salaried places through schools direct so would need to pay £9k fees! Not sure I would even get a loan for it as I have had a student loan previously.

I currently work 3 days a week in a well paid job but have a hefty commute. I have looked around and the industry I am in does not exist nearer to where I live so to pursue my career in the long term I would have to accept commute or move (we wouldn't move as my parents live here & provide a lot of childcare)

Now I have DS commute is a killer even at 3 days a week.

Teaching would allow me to work close to home and but DS is only 2 and I want to maximise time with him and be able to do some school runs in the week when he starts (Sept 17). Plus at some point I would like another! Am I mad to even consider this? So confused?

BackforGood Tue 05-Apr-16 19:51:42

First thing to do is to get into a school (or even better more than one) and do some shadowing, to make sure this is what you really want to do.
Quite a lot of people have a different impression of teaching, from the reality.

Fyaral Tue 05-Apr-16 19:56:19

Even with no commute you would work very long hours. School pickups will be v difficult and no going to see plays etc unless part time. Pay will be shit at first and no gurantee of progression. What is your current job? Will you be able to cope with vile, disinterested children doing nothing and hurling abuse then getting the blame when those students fail to hit targets?

DitheringDiva Tue 05-Apr-16 20:14:33

Based on your reasons, I'd say don't do it. You say you want to do some pick ups and drop offs - this will NEVER happen if you are a teacher unless you are part-time, and you will miss everything that your child does at school (nativities etc), because you can't get time off in term time at all.

Also, your commute would be shorter, but that will just get filled with very long hours. Teaching is getting on for double the hours paid, so if you are full-time (let's say 35 hrs per week), then in reality you will do pushing towards 70 hours. If you are part-time on 2 days a week, in reality you will do getting on for 4 days per week. Maybe not quite that bad in nicer schools, but working hours are LONG.

Business studies is also a very optional subject and tends to be taken by the lowest ability and/or poorly behaved pupils. So for starters there won't be many jobs around, and if there are, the teaching (if you could call it that) would be pretty awful.

With the 9 grand to pay on top of all that, it's a definite "don't do it" from me.

With a business studies degree, I would think much more creatively how you could use your skills to set up your own business, and/or look at all the different kinds of jobs coming up in your area, within a commute that's do-able (look on Indeed, or other jobsites). Think creatively how you can sell the skills you have, to be able to re-hash your CV so that it sells you for those jobs in your area.

LouTheMac Tue 05-Apr-16 20:20:47

Fyaral currently a commercial manager at a food manufacturer - a mix of procurement, sales & marketing, lots of financial reporting plus managing teams to deliver projects.

I am quite passionate about the subject as I followed it through from GCSE to degree and it's very relevant to my job but I know I would have to deal with with gobby teenagers.

Long term I will work full time but would like part time while DS is young but thinking i could get the teacher training year out of the way now while I only have 1 to contend with.

I have 20+ years until retirement and want a career I can actually get stuck into while not taking me away from home 7-7.

LouTheMac Tue 05-Apr-16 20:37:59

Dithering thanks that's a good dose of reality. It's such a shame how teaching has gone! I loved my GSCE business studies teacher so I do have a romanticised idea of how it would be, I know we drove him a bit mad but we had a lot of fun in that class.

Yes I am looking at other options but keep coming back to teaching.

Foxyloxy1plus1 Tue 05-Apr-16 20:59:53

Business studies is one of those subjects that is very much in decline too, like art and drama. Teaching will take you away from home 7-7. At least, you might be at home before 7, but you'll certainly be working.

Fyaral Tue 05-Apr-16 21:10:46

Teaching will not give you evenings with your children. You will work long hours either at school or at home and at weekends. BS jobs will not be as easy to come by as others and you may find yourself being a jack of all trades and teaching outside your subject. The students are noy likely to be as passionate as you are about BS and this may be disheartening. You will also be given lots of low ability disaffected KS4 and KS5 as it is percieved as an easy subject.

Fyaral Tue 05-Apr-16 21:20:29

Its more than just gobby kids as well. Its when you have a group with 5+ students that all kick off in thier own way every lesson. You waste time dealing with them and the rest of the class get unsettled. Management are blaming you for poor behaviour so you can't refer students up the chain too often. Eventually you will mostly achieve order but then the really infuriating bit starts. The children simply will not shut up. It takes at least 30 seconds to get quiet every time you ask. You then can't get through one sentence without being interrupted. Each interruption triggers more talking. You waste the majority of the lesson waiting for silence. You ache for the majority just sitting there waiting to learn. Repeat several times a week. You sanction and they dont turn up so you have to chase. Even when they do their detention they act the same again. After months you make a difference with some but not all. When these students fail it is your fault. You feel powerless.

LouTheMac Tue 05-Apr-16 22:10:44

Thanks Fyaral it's a painful picture you paint, how frustrating.
Really interesting what you are saying about BS as a subject too, I was vaguely aware it's seen as an easy subject but not really of the implications of that.
Might go and do observations anyway and get it out of my system.

PansOnFire Fri 08-Apr-16 01:30:54

BS has been 'demoted' in many schools as the pressure for students to meet ridiculously high targets in Ebac subjects is enormous. Many subjects have been eliminated entirely from the curriculum and often a Btec is offered rather than a GCSE (this varies of course) and for some this is a matter of time. The reality of a secure job in teaching is quite rare and establishments no longer have to honour a teacher's current pay (they can offer the lowest pay rather than the current salary).

The issue of marking and feedback is difficult, many places have impossible expectations and failing to meet these expectations can trigger steps towards capability. It is also something else that can be thrown at you should you have an issue with a particular class and/or student. There is a huge fear factor at the moment - students are under massive pressure to perform which can lead them to exhibiting extreme behaviours when they don't, unfortunately this has created a culture of blame. So it's usually "the teacher didn't teach me the material", "the teacher can't control the class so I can't concentrate", "the teacher has lost my book so I couldn't revise", etc, etc, etc and all of which are 'mistakes' that can land you in massive trouble. And it's definitely not a culture of innocent until proven guilty, the student's word will always be taken over the teachers and it's up to the teacher to provide evidence to the contrary.

It's more than dealing with gobby teenagers now, that side is actually fairly straight forward because that's how most of them are and you expect it. Sometimes it's funny and sometimes it isn't but it's definitely something you can plan for and learn how to deal with. The rest of it is not - gobby teenagers under a lot of pressure, impossible targets for both you and the students and an expectation that all students will meet their targets does not lead to a happy workplace. It's gobby teenagers with mobile phones and on social media which are potentially career/reputation destroyers.

I have 2 young children and I'm leaving teaching so that I can be around for them more often, I've taken a less pressured job in an office so that I can be at home for 5.30 every night with no extra work to do. I've taught for 12 years and I realise that trying to juggle teaching with a young family is not the lifestyle I can live with.

JenniferYellowHat1980 Sat 09-Apr-16 18:29:36

Why don't you think about teaching at undergraduate level? Business Studies, if available at all at KS4, would definitely be considered the easy option alongside the likes of media or vocational courses, and you would get the associated headaches of kids who don't value it and behave accordingly.

LouTheMac Sun 10-Apr-16 08:15:18

Thanks Pansonfire sorry you are having to leave your job after 12 years, it's a sorry state of affairs that teaching has come to this!

Jennifer sorry are you saying undergrad would be better or worse or just as bad? My worry with undergrad is there is only 1 university near me so really restricting myself to one employer. But would be really interested to know more about this.

The other route i have thought about is School Business Manager.

Fyaral Sun 10-Apr-16 10:31:18

Business manager would probably be alright. Although you would be very busy and overworked, it would not require as many additional hours as teaching. The issue you may have is if you work for an unscrupulous head who are increasingly common. You may become very unhappy and disillusioned at how you are required to treat staff.

minnymoobear Sun 10-Apr-16 10:36:19

Project manager told rounds good for you - could be flexible and include home working. Loads of demand for that kind of role!

Foxsox Sat 16-Apr-16 20:27:41

Between the two choices of BS teacher & Business manager I'd certainly go for BM
our BM is paid 40k+ & is on SLT
A brilliant position to be in.

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