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Teaching, school business manager or option c...

(28 Posts)
Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 13:43:58

I am currently a sahm. I was working as an executive assistant and office manager for over 10 years.

My dh was in the forces and retrained as a teacher. Currently in his 5th year.

I am thinking about what I will do when I get back to work, and possibly doing a pgce. My dh works silly hours, but I wonder if I may as well join in! He spends hrs every week night but doesn't work much on a weekend or on hols. I do have a relevant degree.

I have so considered becoming a school business manager as its more closely aligned to my past experiences.

Any thoughts or advice? Another issue is I would not be able to get anywhere too early. I can drop kids off at their breakfast school club at 8am.

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BrexitBingoGenerator Wed 06-Nov-19 13:49:30

They are very different jobs op! I think you should go for the business manager option- it may work better with your morning drop off time and also (and I don’t mean to sound mean when I say this) if you were that dedicated to the idea of educating kids, you wouldn’t be having this dilemma. I only say this because if you aren’t truly passionate about teaching for teaching’s sake, it will spit you up and burn you out - you don’t want that if you have young kids.

Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 13:57:10

I agree... If I were really passionate about teaching it would be a no brsiner wouldn't it. I do love English and I am v passionate about the role language plays in helping us understand the world we live in. But, I see the long hours my dh does and wonder if two people can both teach and raise young dc?! It seems a tall order.

I have applied for sbm roles in the past but been pipped at the post by applicants with a school background.

I am a school governor which gives me a tiny insight. Would you think it is worth while taking a smaller, admin based role in a school just to get my foot in the door? I am happy to study for the sbm qualifications.

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Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 13:58:34

I appreciate the irony of my error riddled post and my love of English! I am terrible at typing on my phone!

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LeekMunchingSheepShagger Wed 06-Nov-19 14:00:52

It sounds like a sbm role would best suit due to your previous experience. School admin roles are highly sought after though and it can be very hard to break into without school experience.

Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 14:19:58

Yes that is my experience too. It is difficult being married to a teacher, he works so much and I don't want to be working when he has his down time because 1. I will miss out on my lovely dhs company when he isn't stressed/knackered and 2. It seems unfair for him to work so much then be saddled with all the childcare when I am at work?!

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Piggywaspushed Wed 06-Nov-19 16:21:43

Both DH and I are, and always have been, full time teachers, juggling all the joys of parenting with it.

We both rarely bring work home, as it is essential you learn how to prioritise and manage family alongside work (but we were both experienced by the time we had DCs).

The school drop off thing is a bit of an issue : why does it have to be you? Surely, you and DH would share that when you return to work??

Business Manager and English teacher are very very different jobs! Do you have any experience at all of working with teenagers? Have you observed any teaching?

What subject does your DH teach?

I do agree that if you are havering, teaching is clearly not your calling!

Piggywaspushed Wed 06-Nov-19 16:22:23

Meant to say, the worst thing about two teachers + DCs is clashing parents' evenings.... it happens all the bloody time.

Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 17:10:11

My dh works in a school that is 45 mins away that starts at 8.15am, so him dropping the kids off isn't physically possible. He has an extra income which is v school specific (paid for extra curricular) and not transferable to post schools so he needs to stay put.

Dh teaches secondary maths.
I observed a day in my dhs school. It seems the teachers either have their all or v little.

I don't know how teachers don't bring work home? If my dh stayed at school to do it all he would never see the kids (they go to bed at 7).

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Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 17:11:30

Also, I certainly wouldnt claim it is currently my calling, I am v much in the thick of it with young dcs but when they need me less I would love a fulfilling and rewarding job.

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Piggywaspushed Wed 06-Nov-19 18:50:05

I think the 'not bringing work home' is managing it in the PPAs and time you have before school, for example. It is also deciding rather than 'I have done everything' ,saying 'that's it. I have done enough'.

I get to school at 7.30 myself (although this is new; I used to get in later) and am out by about 3.30. But I know that I am quite a skilful workload manager!

Scarfaceclaw21 Wed 06-Nov-19 20:03:16

I am amazed you can fit it in during that time. My dh often has over 300 papers to mark. It takes him days...

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Piggywaspushed Wed 06-Nov-19 20:43:40

300 often? All at one time? This sounds unusual!

Teachermaths Wed 06-Nov-19 22:26:45

300 maths papers is unusual all at once.

He can cherry pick jobs being Maths so he should be looking closer to home. 45 mins is a lot per day.

Scarfaceclaw21 Thu 07-Nov-19 01:42:32

As I have said up thread he has a specific extra curricular role which is not transferable to many schools which warns him quite a lot of extra money so moving schools at present isn't possible. Prior to getting this role who struggled to find a position closer to home, can't even get an interview. He has experienced negativity re his previous role in the forces.

Also he teaches 2x Yr 11 classes so if they have 3 papers each then he has Yr 9/10 mocks... Not sure if it is unusual or not. I don't want to argue with folk, it seems as though mn is really changing now. You could get some really helpful responses but everything is getting like aibu where everyone is searching for a hole in what has been said.

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ScienceNut Thu 07-Nov-19 02:17:17

Option C

As a full time senior teacher and single mum, I agree that it is very tough to balance worklife as a teacher, but you can see that already.

English is the heaviest marking subject, especially when it is new to you. Though thankfully research is questioning the quantity of this now.

I fully get your husbands workload and inability to move.

My advice would be to look for office manager positions. Thinking secondary school, team of 3-4 people.

School business manager Is verY full time and full on and is also an annual leave appointment not term time only.

It less well remunerated but would maybe be enough that your husband could look for something closer and improve his work life balance with a smaller commute.

1.5hr a day commute on top of my job nearly killed me when I did 10 years ago, and that was before daughter came along. We moved house for my sake as the teacher!

Teachermaths Thu 07-Nov-19 06:39:12

300 papers regularly is unusual. However I can see how at mock time he would end up with a lot of marking due to having 2 classes. Most decent departments would try and share some of the load however.

I understand he has extra responsibility which is school specific. This is very unusual. Maths teachers near me are in incredibly high demand. We have local departments with 2 teachers and the rest cover for example.

I think if he's struggling with the workload it's not unreasonable to suggest a move, however I can see why that perhaps wouldn't be suitable right now.

I wouldn't reccomend you teaching as well. Its a tough job if your heart isn't really in it. Having both of you working long hours, parents evening etc could become a logistical nightmare depending on your childcare options.

SansaSnark Thu 07-Nov-19 06:52:58

If you are in an area where schools can pick and choose maths teachers, then how easy would it be for you to find an English job - especially if you are responsible for all school drop offs and therefore limited in where you could realistically commute to?

You also have to consider how you would get through the PGCE - one of my placement schools was an hour's commute from uni, and it was a really stressful year. I know people do it with young kids, but there is usually a partner who is able is able to help pick up the slack.

However, there are always potential solutions e.g. Alternative childcare you can drop your children at earlier.

If you are really interested, why not talk to some local unis or arrange some more school experience as a starting point?

Piggywaspushed Thu 07-Nov-19 06:57:09

OP, no need to be defensive. I wasn't arguing! I told you first off that I am a full time teacher married to a teacher (maths like yours, and I am English like you!) and that I have always managed but it has been tough. I thought you would welcome that information but you didn't actually seem very interested.

In fact, you did not acknowledge the fact that I gave you that information...

I also mentioned logistical difficulties around parents' evenings, which ahs always been the stressful thing (also training days : you haven't mentioned family nearby. I have none , and that was really really hard)

The reason I said 300 at a time an doften was unusual was to reassure you , for your job, that that is not normal.

Your DH (ids he at a private school?) is only 5 years in : slowly , he will start to manage his marking so he is doing it less and faster and things will get better for him.

I genuinely cannot see where I was arguing. Other than expressing astonishment at the amount of marking your DH 'has' to do.

Piggywaspushed Thu 07-Nov-19 07:01:04

Also, my school has recently cut costs by not having a business manager. This falls to a Deputy Head. Beneath that layer are finance staff who are most likely paid peanuts. So BM jobs may not be plentiful.

That said , when we did have a business manager/bursar, he was paid 350k!

Piggywaspushed Thu 07-Nov-19 07:01:28

Oops, I meant £50k!

superram Thu 07-Nov-19 07:04:10

Having just gone through the new Ofsted process I wouldn’t recommend teaching-it would seem they want us to be robots.

Scarfaceclaw21 Thu 07-Nov-19 07:10:44

Sorry it just seemed the astonishment bordered on disbelief. I am interested in hearing all points of view, I am struggling at the mo to find a solution

We do have my family about 30 mins away who help out a bit but the can't do more than 1 day a week. Unfortunately moving closer to my dhs work means moving further from them.

Regarding managing my pgce year and parents evenings etc yes that is weighing heavily on my mind.

I feel pretty lost. I am (despite my rambling posts) fairly intelligent and educated, but I am facing low paid admin roles on a pt basis at 52 weeks a year. It would take over an hour to get to the nearest city, which means I can't start anywhere for 9am, which means working in my small town with few options. We can't move further away from family as we would be even worse off (they currently look after dc 1 day a week while I do freelance), and my dh can't move closer cos of his extra income (it's not private school nut it is a v large comprehensive can't say anymore otherwise it's v outing).

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SansaSnark Thu 07-Nov-19 13:02:45

Have you researched your options for where you would do your PGCE? Would you realistically have placements in schools that work for you? Just it sounds like you are quite limited in where you could travel to, as well as by childcare.

Wrt to the business manager thing, I agree that roles are being cut and if your school ever has to be rebrokered into another academy trust etc, then your job would potentially be at risk as well.

fedup21 Thu 07-Nov-19 13:10:55

Of all the jobs in the world that you could retrain to do, the two you’ve picked are very different!

Is term-time working the primary pull?

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