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Teacher Training or CS?

(7 Posts)
mountainbikeglove Sat 27-Apr-19 17:20:45

have name changed just in case here...

Given the option, would you choose working for the Civil Service over teaching? I’m in a lucky position of being able to choose - I have a place on ITT after working as a TA in schools for a few years. I think I know what I’m getting into. I also get the nice big bursary, which would be really helpful to me financially. I think I’d be a good teacher, I have experience in schools, I like taking to young people etc. - I was pleased to be starting the training in Sept.

The thing is, although I think teaching can be a good career I don’t know if I’d really, honestly intend to stick it out past 5 years. I’m very aware that many teachers find the job unsustainable long term so the CS is tempting. It’s an unknown though!

I guess the very mercenary question at the heart of this is - do I take the bursary money and see how it goes with teaching, or do a different job which long term might be less punishing?

Grateful for any thoughts!

OP’s posts: |
Jimjamjools Sat 27-Apr-19 17:34:54

You need someone who's done both jobs to post!
I can only speak for teaching, but if you think you'd enjoy it and have experience of the classroom then that's a good start. You don't have to do a job for 5 years, many people start something and then realise it's not for them, I myself did my PGCE, really panicked I'd made a mistake and then took a year out working in alternative education before finally returning to the classroom to complete my NQT year and become a proper teacher.

I think the only unethical thing is take the bursary for 1 year when you have no intention of going into teaching at all. There's a trainee at my school currently who has made it pretty clear shes doing that and needless to say most staff are pissed off; not only is she earning more than some of the younger teachers through this bursary (shes training in a shortage subject) and teaching a fraction of their timetable, staff in her subject really need a new teacher in that area and sort of hoped once she finished being carefully trained by them shed at least apply for the job that's coming up.

Jimjamjools Sat 27-Apr-19 17:36:22

Apologies for my awful grammar!

WhenIsTheEasyBit Sat 27-Apr-19 17:47:07

It's the DFE which is unethically continuing with bursaries despite everyone telling them they are not an effective tool. Changes ahead though OP as I think they are going to attach part of them to staying in teaching.

Back to your dilemma...Civil service jobs vary hugely, so it is hard to say whether that or teaching would suit you best. You might get a customer facing role which could be absolutely horrible or really satisfying. Similarly, you might work on policy is a fascinating area or one that bores you silly. Workload in the CS varies too. Some jobs steady and predictable, others with big peaks and troughs.

The teaching qualification will tell future employers in any field a lot about you, and you may find you love teaching.

mountainbikeglove Sat 27-Apr-19 19:38:03

Thanks everyone - yes I sort of hoped someone who’s done both might turn up! Ironically it’s actually a role in the DfE so if anyone ever asks me my opinion the bursary system...
I can see it’s really flawed. I wouldn’t want to just do the PGCE year then leave but at the same time I do know staff at school who made it to RQT and thought - fuck it, and I can’t really blame them as they were 23/4 yr old science grads who’d lived at home, saved the bursary and moved on. Theres your house deposit and a really valuable set of skills from the PGCE that you can use elsewhere.

I think the appeal of they CS is that people keep telling me ‘once you’re in you’re in’ - I dont know if that’s true or not but I like the idea of being able to change departments and potentially having a varied career.

OP’s posts: |
noblegiraffe Sat 27-Apr-19 19:51:31

Going in to teaching thinking you’ll do it for 5 years is fine, honestly we need all hands on deck for the next 5 years. Teach First only ask for two!

And the civil service would still be there when you came out?

fussychica Sat 27-Apr-19 20:23:22

Trained to teach but went into the Civil Service post my BEd as ironically there were very few teaching jobs around at the time. It was decades ago but landed up doing 26 years in various departments starting as a management trainee and worked my way up the management grades. I loved the early part of my career when I had lots of varied contact with the public and employers but as time went on it was much more policy, strategy and speech writing and I got bored so retired abroad. I don't know if it's still the same but then you could move from department to department easily which gave you the opportunity for lots of variety and good career progression, especially in London and the South East.

Part of me wishes I had stuck to my guns and gone into teaching. I like to think I would have been good at it but I might be wrong!

DS is a teacher and loves the fact that every day is different, he can't imagine working in an office. He's only a few years in so who knows if he'll change his mind.

Not sure how helpful that is but good luck, whatever you decide.

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