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Should I do this?(30 Posts)
I'm currently a registered nurse, late 30s. I've had enough. I need a new path.
I have a degree and there are places for a PGCE with it, at my local university, for Sept this year.
Is this a logical step, will they even consider my application?
Am I too old to make such a change? Have I been out of education for too long to manage it?
I'm a single mum, is it manageable?
And should I???
You might want to read this post by someone who left the NHS to do a PGCE for a comparison:
Why do you want to teach? What subject?
I did a PGCE as a single parent. I love the job but after 5 years, had had enough. I now do supply which has really worked for me. It is hard to be a good teacher and a good parent - something always needs to ‘give’ and frequently that was my own children.
I always wanted to be a teacher and then panicked that I couldn't do it and never did the PGCE at 21. Geography.
I did read that post already and it scared me...is it really that bad?!
Is it really that bad?
Is there really a crisis in the NHS?
I career changed from a community based NHS role to primary school teacher.
Without any doubt it is the hardest thing I've done. I work 60-70 hours a week and it doesn't feel enough. I'm in a fantastic supportive school but I'm not yet experienced enough to not spend significant amounts of time planning and making resources.
I could not do this without my DH being here for the children and housework. I know people do, but I couldn't manage to be a good parent, manage the household and teach as well.
BUT, I do love it!
I thought I had an understanding of public service pressures coming from the NHS- I've found it to be a whole different ball game!
Sorry I didn't mean it like that.
I'm currently in a community position where numbers are dangerous and managers have you in tears everyday because you haven't completed paperwork. I'm doing just as many hours at home each night after a shift to write up the day. If my patients are admitted, I'm penalised and called a failure.
I went into nursing to make a difference, but I'm really not, and the results are scary.
Unfortunately, a lot of that will be the same in education. Have you got recent work experience in school?
You could do the PGCE for 1 year, do whatever hours you need to keep your nursing registration and have the choice at the end of it to do either teaching or nursing. (Maybe don't mention that at PGCE interview!)
Do you want to get out of nursing? Or do you have a burning passion to teach?
I worry that you might find even more pressure on a lesser salary to start off with.
I don't actually regret the move, I was ready for a new challenge.
Both - a passion for teaching and for young people, a need to change my career. I am worried I don't have enough classroom experience, but I have lots of experience of working with the age group.
How much is “not enough”? Working in a class situation is very different from other contexts (I’m guessing you’re a paeds nurse?).
I've done visits and days in schools, only one block of a couple of weeks.
Pink have you considered working in one of the Priory mental health units for young people?
Teachers are constantly told they are failures by, kids, parents and SMT even when their results are above average
To offer an alternative perspective, I work in a lovely school. No formal planning required, certainly not required to hand it in. I love teaching the children and work 8-5 in school then maybe 1-2 hours every evening and probably 3/4 hours on a weekend. My biggest issue is parents as they can be very challenging, always thinking they’re correct and that there’s no way their child has done said thing.
Honestly I love teaching and I think if it's something you really want, then go for it. Certainly don't make it about your age. Some of the most inspirational teachers I've had the pleasure of working with have been career changers in their 30s/40s.
However, (I know some may disagree and say the nqt or the nqt+1 is) but I think the pgce is the hardest year in teaching. I really can't imagine doing that with young children. Teaching I'm afraid is also one of those jobs where you take a lot of work home. Certainly for my first 2 years I worked every weekend and evening. In my 3rd year I got to a stage where i could work till 6 and have a weekend, with only half a day working on a Sunday afternoon as I had a bank of resources and I was up to date with all my marking. However I'm going back into it after mat leave with a new curriculum and new textbooks and I know that I am going back no weekends again as I basically have no resources.
Can I suggest looking at an Alternative Provision or SEMH setting? The expertise you would bring with you would be a huge plus, and while there are obviously big stresses involved, I find the work/life balance is better because my classes are small and so marking/planning is less of a grind.
I second TheFallenMadonna. I teach English in a secondary SEMH school in a rough part of south east London. It is extremely confronting in terms of behaviour but
-I adore most of the students most of the time
-Our staff team are amazing and we all genuinely respect and look out of each other even if we aren’t all best friends. We all (about 35 people: SLT, teachers, TAs, mentors, kitchen staff, office staff, etc) go away camping for a weekend at the end of each school year.
- I work 8:30-5 (max. Usually I leave between 4:30 and 5) each day and teach 9:30-12:50.
- we have around 40 boys on roll so the relationships between staff and students are excellent
- I had 5 GCSE students this year (and 3 doing Entry Level) so the marking and planning was a fraction of my friends teaching in mainstream.
- there isn’t the obsession with “progress” that there can be in mainstream. Or least there is a genuine knowledge and acceptance that “progress” isn’t a linear continuation.
I'm loving the sound of this. I definitely have the skills for it. It is the ordinary PGCE and then choosing the right workplace, isn't it?
I currently work til 6 plus a few hours each night catching up plus a weekend shift a month, so I don't think time etc is going to be an issue really.
Go for it! Geography is a shortage subject and you would qualify for a bursary. You can probably still get on the course for September now. If you don't enjoy your PGCE, you can do something else. Better to try teaching and see if you enjoy it.
I've started the application!!
I worked in the NHS and changed to teaching. I have never looked back. I'm still in a profession with lots of interaction with people and this satisfies my need to care for people. PGDE was tough but it goes so fast. I was lucky enough to be placed in an excellent school for NQT year and I'm still there 4 years later.
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