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Did I do the right thing?

(16 Posts)
longshorts Sun 28-Aug-16 19:42:49

Hello, I just need some perspective from fellow teachers/TAs who might have been feeling the strain in the past couple of years. A year ago, having left a role in a large, challenging primary school where I had a good work life balance, I started a new job at a smaller school and within weeks was on my knees. It was a promoted position but the school had a lot of difficulties that I knew nothing about when I accepted the job. I really did my best, but have never felt so anxious, demoralised and overworked in my life. I have since accepted a position back at my old school on a slightly reduced salary - but equivalent to when I left it - and am due to start back next week. I know that on paper this is a good outcome, and I am very grateful, but I can't shake the feeling of failure, that I have ruined my career, and that I really should have given the new role another year. It really is pulling me down and while dh has been very supportive throughout the whole horrible mess i can't keep going on at him about this. Please, if anyone else has experienced anything similar and is now able to look back with an ounce of perspective I would be so grateful. Thank you.

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Hockeydude Sun 28-Aug-16 19:51:05

You haven't ruined your career. Someone dumped a big pile of shit on you and you got out from underneath it. Well done.

longshorts Sun 28-Aug-16 20:56:01

Thank you Hockeydude.

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Minispringroll Sun 28-Aug-16 21:33:15

It wasn't right and you got out. Nothing to be ashamed of. You lasted longer than I did. grin I left mid-year and to be honest, if my previous school had offered me my job back, I would have taken it. I did move to a different school, without the TLR I had and without all of the responsibility. It was good to get back on my feet for the last few months of the previous academic year. I needed that because the job I had accepted had really got me down (to the point where even my mum was shocked and suggested I quit and friends at other schools were already starting to offer me positions...I've been teaching for 10 years in different schools and have never had my confidence undermined so much).
Just be glad you are out and let someone else put up with the crap.

longshorts Sun 28-Aug-16 21:46:51

Thank you Minispringroll. I'm glad to hear that things got better for you - you sound much more decisive than me! I agonised over the decision which only added to the anxiety I think and didn't do anyone any good.

Get what you mean about confidence. Working as hard as you can to the detriment of everything else and it's still not good enough...

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DoreenLethal Sun 28-Aug-16 21:51:16

I am one of those people that has done supply, after spending a fair old time going in as a consultant teaching SEN teenagers the pleasures of gardening. I can walk into one school and come out a ragged mess, whilst the next day, at a different school, get greeted at the door by the students [the same students that in the other school would be unteachable] who carry my bags for me. It's all about the management.

Never stay in a position with a bad manager. It really will not benefit you in any way .

Hope you settle back quickly. Sounds like the best move all round.

KimmySchmidtsSmile Sun 28-Aug-16 21:55:33

You have absolutely done the right thing.
What's the worst that can happen?
Someone ribs you a bit? "Oh, you couldn't stay away from us that long?"
Bit of hurt pride? Bollocks to that. What you are doing is best for you and actually quite brave.
Far too many people continue on the mistaken path they are on for fear of turning back but it's crazy. I do know someone who returned to their old job and the head was bloody pleased to have her back.
I was offered an old job once when a new job didn't work out and my replacement allegedly was crap...I declined but only because the issues why I had switched jobs in the first place were still there: had I been really happy I would have returned like a shot, head held high.

thatsn0tmyname Sun 28-Aug-16 21:59:07

Sounds like a very sensible thing to do. You work to live not live to work etc. Take care of yourself.

longshorts Sun 28-Aug-16 22:12:54

Thank you so much. I really hate the way the whole thing has taken over my life and thoughts and it's good to be able to discuss it.

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KimmySchmidtsSmile Sun 28-Aug-16 22:29:00

I think you will have a palpable sense of relief next week, I really do.
If the kids ask why you're back, just smile and say "Couldn't keep away. Missed you lot."
To colleagues, ditto, to those who know you well you can tell them the role was a poisoned chalice.
There may be some jaded colleagues who, schadenfreudig though it might be, are relieved to discover your challenging school is actually better than others. Better the devil you know/grass is always greener are clichés because in many cases it's true.
Now you know what you cannot and must not accept. Also it might make your old job much more attractive. However, do NOT let it put you off applying for internal promotions and don't let it taint your view of either yourself or other schools in your authority. This one was a bad fit, the next one might not be. shamrock Similarly if you feel the promoted role would never be something you want to pursue again, irrespective of school quality that's okay too.

KimmySchmidtsSmile Sun 28-Aug-16 22:34:25

Oh I forgot - I did return to an old school once. Different circs a little as I was never there permanently the first time around, left for another temporary post and then came back to a different role after they rang me up when they knew I was available again. Some were Ooh you back again Kimmy?! Others were new so Ivwas new to them. Some were non plusses I was taking a pay cut. But his majority were genuinely p!eased to see me (or deserved Oscars).
flowers for next week. wine for Friday. wink

KimmySchmidtsSmile Sun 28-Aug-16 22:36:15

I was
Non plussed
Sausage fingers!

longshorts Sun 28-Aug-16 22:42:23

grin I think you're right. Big smiles, positive attitude and an appreciation of having a job in a school with a great head.
I do think about the new colleagues that I'm leaving behind though. They are managing to stick it out...

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KimmySchmidtsSmile Sun 28-Aug-16 22:52:53

I have been one of them too. I regret sticking it out. Two colleagues jumped in the first term. They were right to do so. Misplaced loyalty, stubbornness and a desire "to see it through" meant suffering through to Easter. Thankless task, idiotic SMT, dinosaur of a head, I would never advocate staying where you are unhappy, even for references or CV reasons. Mental health far more important.
You sound really nice. Please do not look back. Please do not feel guilty.

CodyKing Mon 29-Aug-16 00:33:00

Not every child fits every school

They same can be said for teachers

There's no shame in going back to a work life balance - it's important

You'll be gossip for 5 mins and life moves on!

Smile enjoy!

longshorts Mon 29-Aug-16 12:46:20

Thank you to everyone who has replied to this. Woke up this morning feeling better than I have in many months. Just need to move forward now.
Happy first day back,

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