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AIBU to have never done more than 2 years at a school?

(91 Posts)
poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 19:25:33

Wondering about this.

School 1 (NQT) - 2 years

School 2 - 2 years

School 3 - 1 year

School 4 - 1 year 1 term

School 5 - 1 year 2 terms

School 6 - 2 terms

School 7 - 2 years

School 8 - 1 year

School 9 - 1 year

School 10 - 1 year 1 term

(Took 2 years out between schools 9 and 10.)

So I suppose I’m wondering about this. For the most part, there haven’t been sinister reasons.

My NQT school was really bad, and I stuck it out for two years but it became unbearable. I left and got a job in a better school but it was a long way from home, so my next role was closer. However, I didn’t enjoy it and it did have ver high staff turnover.

I then applied for a promotion and got it, and then another promotion. The second promotion was just not a good fit for me at all. I got another promotion then, very rapidly. Stayed for two years then had a big relocation and family and then my current role ... and now I’m going to move on again.

Has anybody else moved around lots?

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Piggywaspushed Wed 20-Nov-19 19:41:21

For the most part??? Sounds intriguing!!

Piggywaspushed Wed 20-Nov-19 19:43:30

I'd be amazed if we found anyone else who has done that many schools in that number of years!!

Mist I know of is someone who has done 4 different school in about 6 years and I am rather suspicious of her...

Piggywaspushed Wed 20-Nov-19 19:43:42


poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 19:45:05

Haha, nothing sinister I just meant I mostly have moved on for promotions rather than because I didn’t like the current school although there have been a few where I’ve just thought ‘no.’

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Chosennonetosurvive Wed 20-Nov-19 19:47:42

School 1 NQT 1 year
School 2 2 term
School 3 3 year
School 4 4 years 2 terms
School 5 - on my 12th year.

So way less than you but mainly because my current post is a great fit. Lots of other teachers i know have done only one or two schools! Sign of good schools i guess.
I think you'll be fine, especially with so many promotions in the mix.

TimeforanotherChange Wed 20-Nov-19 19:49:31

It sounds hard work to me to be honest. One of the good things about teaching is the relationship you build with students and if you move onwards and upwards every 18 months you've missed all that. I've taught in quite a few schools in my career but generally done 5/6 years perhaps. My current Y13 I taught from y7 and I really appreciate the years we've had to build understanding and I know they do too.

poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 19:52:18

That’s very true and I do really want to stay at my next school longer. Having said that, I do also know kids move on very quickly.

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MsAwesomeDragon Wed 20-Nov-19 19:53:17

I would find it utterly exhausting moving school that often. I was in my nqt school for 2 years (it was awful!!), Then in my current school for 14 years now. I suspect I'm scared of moving and finding it horrific like my nqt school, while my current school is generally quite good (Ofsted outstanding but not been inspected since 2012, so taken with a pinch of salt now).

I don't really have much of an opinion on other people moving schools regularly, other than maybe it's a shame for any exam classes not to have the same teacher for both years. You might bit even be a secondary teacher though, so that wouldn't be an issue.

poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 19:54:49

I am. In fairness I’ve experienced that a few times - it is nice.

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reefedsail Wed 20-Nov-19 20:01:44

Bluntly, I'd be quite suspicious of you if you applied for a role I was appointing to. I'd wonder if you had trouble fitting in.

Promotions come pretty easily in the areas where there are recruitment problems so that wouldn't necessarily allay my concerns.

I'm on my 5th school in 18 years and, in my area, that is a lot and I'm considered to have 'been around'. grin

Piggywaspushed Wed 20-Nov-19 20:01:57

It is a hell of a lot of schools. You must be very decisive. Most teachers work on a strange kind of guilt complex.

I take it this is secondary?

LolaSmiles Wed 20-Nov-19 20:03:18

The reservation I would have, even with the promotions, is that it seems very much like someone moves in, makes some changes, gets short term impact, bounces to next promotion, couple of new initiatives, take the data, move on.

To me it feels like go in during war times + throw money/time/effort at a series of initiatives + win the battle... And leave before seeing if the war was won.

I'm quite sceptical of leaders who move around too much and I'd inwardly question if they have any long term impact in their schools and whether they've ever really worked through the "peace times".

That's no slight on them as people, but I'd quietly have professional reservations.

poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 20:03:26

Secondary, yes. How do you mean, guilt complex (I don’t mean to sound accusatory, just not sure what you do mean!)

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Piggywaspushed Wed 20-Nov-19 20:04:29

By way of opposites, I have been in my school for 24 years!

I have actually been trying to leave it for approximately 14 of those....

My difficulty in getting promoted, ironically, is that I don't have experience of other schools. I think there is an optimal number.

poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 20:05:33

It can be difficult when you’ve been a long time at one place, although I’m the other extreme!

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Piggywaspushed Wed 20-Nov-19 20:05:39

Guilt complex is this idea of 'oh, but what about the kids? What about their exams? What about colleagues who have to take over form me? Blah de blah'. It's what heads rely on to retain staff.

Are you science?

poppyeleanor Wed 20-Nov-19 20:07:29

Oh, I see.

Well, I suppose I don’t think of myself as so remarkable that I’m irreplaceable grin plus life moves on very fast.

No, I am a core subject though.

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student26 Wed 20-Nov-19 20:09:30

I’ve done a fair few but that’s only because they are short term contracts. I can’t wait to get a permanent job - after seven years of being a teacher!!

likeafishneedsabike Wed 20-Nov-19 20:28:57

I mean, it sounds like hell to me with learning all the school systems/personnel/structures on top of the students themselves! But it’s possible that a teacher in your position with ten schools under your belt could actually be more effective than a ‘lifer’ who’s seeing out their career at one school. Wider perspectives, different ways of looking at things, more adaptable etc. Schools need a good mix of the lifers and those passing through, perhaps.

LolaSmiles Wed 20-Nov-19 20:36:02

I think there's balance.

Someone I respect said that 3-5 years is a reasonable time frame to show you're not a one trick pony and you can stick it out in a school.

Put it this way, would I think a HoD is a strong HoD because they've seen one GCSE Cohort through? Probably not. They could be very talented, but they've not proven it because they've taken the data and left. Nobody knows whether their KS3 changes were any good (if they did much beyond target GCSE), nobody knows if the improvement was due to the HoD changes or a different cohort for that two years. Really 2 years as HoD doesnt tell anyone anything really.

MsAwesomeDragon Wed 20-Nov-19 20:37:46

I do find it very odd that you can have been teaching for as long as you have and only see an exam class through from y10 to y11 a couple of times.

I teach maths, and at my school you pick a class up in year 8 and keep them through to the end of year 11. Sometimes you get a class in year 7 that you keep. Some of my current year 13 class first met me back in year 5 when I used to go out and do primary outreach maths (before the money for that ran out). I think the beauty of teaching is the relationships you build up with the pupils, you must not get the same relationships if you are there for such a short time. Do you get to teach y 11 very often? You wouldn't if you moved to my school, because new teachers to the school don't get core subjects in y11, you would pick up a y10 class and be expected to keep them for y11. Any classes where their teacher leaves at the end of y10 are given to an established teacher at the school. I suppose we're quite lucky in that we have a well established and experienced staff, so we can be a bit picky.

Kolo Wed 20-Nov-19 20:37:52

School 1 - 3 years (plus my TP before that)
School 2 - 14 years 1 term
School 3 - 2 terms

Moving schools is pretty exhausting. I think it takes a year or 2 to get your feet under the table and work out exactly what's what. In the school I taught at for 14 years, the length of time I'd been there meant the kids saw me as part of the furniture and I didn't have to spend much effort on classroom management. When I moved the the next school, that's when I realised it wasn't that my classroom management skills had developed so much over the years, I think it was more the reputation I'd gathered. Because the kids at my new school ran me ragged and I was back at square 1.

Pineapple1 Wed 20-Nov-19 20:46:58

First school was 4 years and 2 terms. Only one was teaching as a School Direct trainee.

Second was one year as an NQT, they made me redundant. Basically hired me by mistake... That made me feel super special... Not.

Third, I'm still there, this is my second year.
I am thankful I have a stable job, in a good school. Just a shame the leadership is so difficult to get anything out of. Like getting blood from a stone.

Tillyscoutsmum Wed 20-Nov-19 20:53:06

NQT - 1 year
RQT - 1 year
Third school - 2 years
Fourth school - since September

So 4 schools in 5 years 🙄 Primary though

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