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Thinking of retraining as a teacher

(39 Posts)
totoromama Wed 31-Aug-16 13:33:27

As title. We moved last year and I haven't been able to get a similar job. So I am thinking about retraining as a teacher. I've thought about it off and on for years since the girls were small. I taught EFL for 9 years abroad and in the UK before working in IT. I'm looking at Secondary Computer Science or Business studies. I would start in September 2017. Any advice would be great.

Doowrah Wed 31-Aug-16 14:22:19

Go and spend some time in classes in your chosen field/age and decide then. Talk to the teachers about it.Good luck.

noblegiraffe Wed 31-Aug-16 18:19:08

What is your degree in?

Get into schools and talk to teachers.

There's a severe shortage of computer science teachers so if you decide to train, go for that, they'll throw money at you, £20-25k to do a PGCE depending on degree class and subject.

gonzo155 Wed 31-Aug-16 19:55:15

Don't, and I say that as someone who loves the job.

What is your degree in? If you can teach computer science there will be quite a few jobs as many current IT teachers can't. There's little work for Business Studies teachers as it is being forced out by the EBACC.

pegitout Fri 02-Sep-16 07:33:29

Don't do it. Just don't.

DoreenLethal Fri 02-Sep-16 07:37:04

Do some TA Supply for a month and then decide.

t4nut Fri 02-Sep-16 13:24:37

Don't do it. Just walk away now.

If you have a family or friends you actually like to see and your health and/or your sanity just walk away now.

Acopyofacopy Fri 02-Sep-16 18:15:47

Go and volunteer in a school.
Have you heard of schools direct? You could earn (a little) while you learn and be done within a year, if you have got the right qualifications.

You will need nerves of steel and superhuman organisation talent. Teachers are leaving the profession in droves, and feedback can be extremely negative. I do believe that the system is at breaking point and things can only get better smile

LuluJakey1 Fri 02-Sep-16 18:26:48

I'd research it very carefully. The training is very stressful. Secondary kids are tough and managing them has to be learned- it is a real skill to manage a class of 30, produce great lessons, and get excellent results. Computer Science will die a death. Most teenagers think it sounds exciting but hate it. It appeals more to boys than girls. Training for it is poor.
Salaries are not great for new teachers - £22,000 with only a 1% pay rise for the last 5 years or so. The hours and worklads are ridiculous and it is a very stressful job in terms of accountability. For example, we know someone this year whose Y11 Maths class got poor results and it has totally knocked the school's data- down to the bottom few places in the lcal authority. He is dreading going back to work and feels terrible. The school and department and him will come under huge scrutiny this year because of it and 20+ children who should have got C grades or better didn't and they are stuffed too. He has a small baby at home and a wife who is furious with him too as he now won't get a pay rise and go through threshold. Teachers work exceptional hours (DH is a Deputy Head and I was until I had DS). Many people train and leave within a couple of years.

It can be hugely rewarding and exciting but you have to be the right kind of person. Make sure you do your homework before you go-ahead.

Lara2 Fri 02-Sep-16 19:57:10

I'll add my voice to the others who are telling you to walk away - nay, run!!!!
I never thought I would want to leave teaching, but there's a reason I, and hundreds of others like me want nothing more then to close the door on it all.
You will have no life, you will not be appreciated, you will have every aspect of your work micro-managed and at the end of your career a pension that's pathetic! The ups used to out weigh the downs - sadly, not any longer. sad

totoromama Fri 02-Sep-16 20:58:51

I spent 10 years teaching EFL primarily IELTS,Cambridge exams. I am used to writing detailed lesson plans. Each lesson in 5 min chunks. The admin doesn't scare me. I am used to teaching classes 930-1230, 230-530 and 6-9 5 days a week with planning done at home.

Acopyofacopy Fri 02-Sep-16 21:02:10

Now go and spend some time in the toughest school around and see if you could deal with unwilling pupils.

totoromama Fri 02-Sep-16 21:26:55

I was hoping by doing 14_18 they might be more willing as computer science is an elective. But I've dealt with reluctant students who don't see the point of doing an exam as daddy can pay for uni. The realisation that you need the English exam to get into uni no matter how much money you have does make them finally buckle down.

noblegiraffe Fri 02-Sep-16 21:39:47

Unlikely you'll just get to teach 14-18. Also, your GCSE class will be full of 14 year old gamers/4-chaners who want to learn how to be hackers.

Doowrah Fri 02-Sep-16 21:45:56

No offence but I too taught EFL for years before becoming a regular teacher and you have no idea, EFL is a breeze compared to the nonsense you will have to deal with. Although I must say your experience will stand you in good stead.

LuluJakey1 Fri 02-Sep-16 22:05:44

EFL is nothing like working in a secondary school nder the huge levels of scrutiny and accountability on a daily basis.

You won't be able to teach just 14-18 and quite frankly, it is a mistake to think that as 14 year olds make option choices they then behave and are highly motivated.

It is not about delivering content - read an Ofsted handbook and see the hundreds of other things you are judged on.mGo into a school and ask to see their marking policy and how books have to be marked and how often. You will be appraised n the quality of outcomes you produce - ie how much better than the targets you are set by the Leadership Team, you manage to perform. No excuses for any child. DH's school sets targets above what they would be expected to achieve and then staff are expected to achieve those as a minimum for ever child. That is because unless a school significantly out-performs challenging targets their Progress 8 figure will not be high enough to keep them from being judged by Ofsted ae Inadequate, Requires Improvement or Coasting. Constant improvement every year is demanded by the government. It is ridiculous.
You are also responsible for standards of behaviour, safeguarding, uniform, attendance and punctuality, homework completion standards. It NEVER eases up. It is all checked an mnitored every week and used to make judgements - informally and formally about teachers. You will not tet home before 5.30 and can expect at least a couple of hours work at home every night and a whole day at weekends, plus all the parent evenings, open evenings, reports for every class in every year group, data collections every 6 weeks which must show progress, department meetings, staff meetings, CPD weekly.
Not meaning to sound rude but I think you have no idea.

Acopyofacopy Fri 02-Sep-16 22:06:28

I agree, EFL is a good base to build on, but you cannot imagine the eleventy zillion hoops you have to jump through in school. I had never heard of plenaries before. Or differentiated my lessons ever three ways.

Still like the job, though smile. At least for now.

MrsGuyOfGisbo Mon 05-Sep-16 14:09:10

I'll add my voice to the others who are telling you to walk away - nay, run!!!!
this
A 'chosen' subject does not mean the kids actively want to study it - just that it is marginally less detested than the other choices. grin
As a supply teacher I see every kind of school and every subject. The only way teaching secondary is palatable now is part time in an indie.

BackforGood Mon 05-Sep-16 14:28:42

I do thin you are approaching this a little naively (only from what you've posted, I'm happy to find I'm wrong). The ONLY way to make an informed decision is to go and shadow some secondary teachers, preferably in more than one different school, and get a real feel for what it's like. It's certainly a challenging job and you will never be bored, but it's not easy and one you have to really want to do, so find out the facts first.

MrsGuyOfGisbo Mon 05-Sep-16 19:37:35

it is difficult to get a true picture by shadowing - you only see the tip of the iceberg. I shadowed at an outstanding faith school and only selected teachers and classes. And only in class - ie just the fun stuff- , so all the meetings/data pressures/planning/parent calls etc were not visible.

BackforGood Mon 05-Sep-16 22:53:10

Well no, you wouldn't if you just went in while the dc were there, but if I were shadowing to find out what a job was like, I'd expect to get to school, and leave school, at the same time as the person I was shadowing - and try to have conversations around how much they do at home as well to get a clearer picture.
There wouldn't be the mass exodus from teaching if teachers were just able to do the teaching, that isn't the issue.

LuluJakey1 Tue 06-Sep-16 19:41:43

The chance of you having a timetable of 14-18 Computer Science is zilch.

A day in the life of my DH (today)
Arrived at school at 7.00 am
Worked on Year 7 assembly
Attended dept meeting at 8.00am
Meet and greeted Y7 , 8.30- 8.45am
Y7 Assembly 8.45-9.15 am- with 100 Y 7 parents who had come along
9.15-10.15 am Y7 tutor groups - timetables etc
10.15-11.15 - Y7 working on Tutor Booklets about the School
11.15- 11.30 - Break duty
11.30-1.00 - Y7 literacy and numeracy testing
1.00-1.45 - lunch duty
1.45- 2.45 - Y7 History
2.45-3.45- Y12 History
4.00-5.00 Delivered an hour of staff CPD on Child Protection
5.00-5.45 - met Head to discuss how the day had gone
Home at 6.30
6.30-7.00 put DS to bed and read him a story
7.00 onwards - is workng in the study on lesson plannng while eating his tea. Thinks he will be finished by 9.
Ate- nothing at work except an apple on duty at lunchtime
Drank 2 bottles of water
No toilet break

BizzyFizzy Tue 06-Sep-16 20:04:02

In contrast...

I arrived at work at 7.30, and did some last minute printing out. I then had a cooked breakfast, and met students as they arrived. I had form time for an hour, followed by a delightful chapel for 45 minutes.

I taught a lesson, and then had a 30 minute break. I taught a second lesson and then had a very nice lunch. I then did an hour of preparation before teaching yet another lesson. Another hour to myself followed by tea supervision. 30 minutes to myself followed by a one hour silent prep with my form.

I live 40 minutes from school and am out of the house for 12 hours, but I seriously have no work to do from home.

And my school is a fantastic community.

BackforGood Tue 06-Sep-16 20:18:23

... as I said - go and spend some time in different schools, don't make your decision based on one.

CurlyhairedAssassin Tue 06-Sep-16 20:28:05

That doesn't sound like your ordinary state secondary,,Bizzy.

Lulu, your DH sounds like he is fairly senior (year head/assistant year head?). Why is he leading Child Protection sessions? Usually the head teacher is the safeguarding officer and as such would lead such sessions.

Yes, Toto, I would listen to the other teachers here. I am support staff in a secondary school and while not in classrooms so don't see most of the teaching aspects of school (ha! You'd think that would be the MAIN aspect but NO!), I know fully well how bad all the other stuff is as has been well described unthread.

For years since childhood I wanted to teach but I ended up not doing it for one reason and another (mainly because other teachers put me off!) and now and again wonder if I should just do it otherwise I may regret never having done it. And then I listen to my teacher colleagues and sit in an Ofsted briefing and hear the ridiculous requirements for inspections (schools all have the same standards they have t follow regardless of intake or gender of pupils or area of deprivation which brings loads of problems etc. ) and deal with a feckless parent who can't be arsed getting their kid equipped/ in correct uniform for first day back, or even to bring their child to collect their GCSE results and I tell myself "no, you made the right choice all those years ago."

Some of the parents are AWFUL! Meet the parents and it explains a lot about the kids. you aren't even allowed to be forthright with the parents as you can't upset then in case they complain about the school.

Don't do it unless you can be guaranteed of a job in a fantastic school.

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