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Another person thinking of resigning...

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Vcurtis28, Oct 13, 2015.

  1. Vcurtis28

    Vcurtis28 New commenter

    I have worked at an independent school for 4 years and have just started a new role at an academy as head of department as I was unable to progress at the independent school for a number of reasons. After the first few weeks of this academic year I began having second thoughts of this new role due the additional demands such as data, additional meetings etc. Not only that but I am now teaching 5 different subject areas (4 of which I haven't taught before so have to gather resources from scratch etc) a number of which are after school twilight sessions and when I do not have timetabled sessions after school I am expected to do intervention sessions, whilst I did this in my previous school it was not so demanding. There is also an expectation that I must keep ringing parents of poorly behaved students but also those who do not perform well on tests - I was used to this from the independent (there were paying after all) but the expectation is so much higher.

    Sorry for the moan! The staff are really lovely and supportive at the academy which helps but I cant help but feel like perhaps the previous school wasn't the issue and that actually I need to take my career in an entirely different direction. I am seriously considering resigning at the end of this half term although it will not go down well as my predecessor was off on long term sick last year and never returned so a lot of the student were naturally affected by this. However if I stick it out, they want me to begin a middle management course from January which means that I will be committed for a lot longer.

    I feel that my mental health has gone downhill, struggle to sleep, wake up really early and just feel exhausted. I know that it is a big change in terms of school type and job role but I feel that I am doing things that I didn't actually sign up for (e.g. subjects being taught).

    I am not sure whether I am over thinking it and perhaps this is life in an academy? But I am seriously thinking I don't think it;s actually worth the bother and perhaps now is the time to jump stations before I go too much further up the pay-scale and then a pay cut will be more noticeable? I am 28 years old so I feel that this would potentially be a good time to have a change and my husband is supportive of this.

    Am I the only one??! Am I going to completely mess up my CV but leaving so soon, I feel that I would rather be honest and tell prospective employers that I want to take a different avenue and it wasn't for me. What other jobs could I do aside from private tutoring and supply?? How would I deal with the downfall of SLT being peeved at the fact they have just appointed someone after searching for almost a year and then I resign after 7 weeks?


    Thanks so much in advance :)
  2. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Another unhappy poster, this is so sad.

    Having read your post, I then started this thread:

    Possible other careers

    You would have at least the comfort of seeing the light at the end of the tunnel . . . But you are right that they would be upset.

    Therefore, logically, your first step should not be to resign, but to go and see one of them and ask for help and support. Go with a (shortish!) list of how your life could be made better so that you don't want to resign. Tell them exactly how you feel.

    If they have any sense at all, they will listen and respond.

    Best wishes

    notsonorthernlass and DYNAMO67 like this.
  3. chouxbunsmum

    chouxbunsmum New commenter

    I work in an Academy. I have just resigned too. The pressure is simply not worth it. My mental health has suffered too and I am an anxious, emotional wreck. I am signed off til after half term, but even then I don't know how I'm going to go back. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but it seems if you want 'progression' these days, you have to commit your life to school.
    snowyhead likes this.
  4. mark6243

    mark6243 Occasional commenter

    Topics like this are becoming to sound routine. :(
  5. opalfeet

    opalfeet Occasional commenter

    Hi Vcurtis.

    I had a similar experience and now I am paying for it in terms of my CV- one blip in a otherwise faultless CV and it is all employers want to know about. I understand why, but they dig and dig to find out why you resigned and then often don't want to take the risk.

    I agree with Theogriff and Mark- it is a sad state of affairs and far too common and routine. I remember looking at workplace dilemmas and seeing a variety of problems, now it is just a list of teachers who want to leave.

    The problem is it is probably the conscientious and competent teachers who are affected the most, they want to do a good job and grind themselves into the ground in trying to do so. Constant scrutiny and criticism from schools/middle managers/management only makes the stress worse. It also makes you start to question your own abilities as a teacher.

    It is interesting that Theogriff advises getting support from managers- perhaps you are unaware of the culture of backstabbing and bullying that exists in many schools and amongst management. It's about keeping your nose clean, if that involves making another staff member look bad- so be it. Management too are under scrutiny, so it makes sense to pass this on to hods, who in turn pass this on to mainscale teachers. Mainscale teachers then shoulder all the criticism, but have no power to change things in the school.

    Vcurtis, it sounds like you are in a position to get out- get out whilst you can :) Oh and supply, it is hard to get regular supply, unless you are willing to do a term- then you may as well be in a full time teaching job. Day to day supply is often given to people at the agencies who are paid £40-50 a day to do cover supervisor roles and schools are billed for a teacher (around £220). A disgusting use of public money, I really do not understand why the government allows private recruitment firms to profit from public money- esp when schools are having to deal with cuts. Ah well, we see this in the NHS too. Right rant over- off to plan my lessons. :)
    cissy3 likes this.
  6. sebedina

    sebedina Occasional commenter

    My experience for the last 5 years in a few schools is that of micro-managing and under-mining teachers, constant scrutiny and work load coupled with bad management or school politics is a common place nowadays. I can only say I've been to one good school where this doesn't happen and it was really lovely. No snooping from SLT or under-mining. It was a breath of fresh air. However, majority of it is the same in Academies. Constant drop ins and "consultants" coming in to snoop. In some cases teaching assistants have been told to spy on teachers too!!!
    Dragonlady30 and cissy3 like this.
  7. Scintillant

    Scintillant Star commenter

    The amount of very poor practice masquerading as objectivity going on in schools is verging on a national scandal. The constant attempts to measure things that are essentially almost impossible to measure, and the constant reading into limited data of much than can be reliably gleaned, drives me nuts. Surely intelligent people understand how subjective and unreliable what they're doing is, and realise the extent of what can interpreted from pretty limited data?

    But, no, it seems they genuinely don't.
  8. mechanic291

    mechanic291 New commenter

    Just to jump into this conversation here, I have only been teaching for two years and now can't wait to leave.
    I have something lined up for around April time but I am thinking of leaving the job at Christmas; the stress is quite simply not worth it. I work in a school where behaviour is a real issue and nothing is done about it, as a classroom teacher I have exhausted all types of activities along with behaviour management strategies and staff above do nothing about it. That ontop of constant work and lesson scrutiny contributes to an unhealthy lifestyle.
    I now feel as though the day I walk out of those school doors for the last time will be the day when a HUGE weight is lifted from my shoulders.
    JessicaRabbit1 likes this.
  9. vinnie24

    vinnie24 Lead commenter

    In a situation such as this I would listen to the great George Michael who sang

    DO! YOU!

    Great words to live by (and to shake a leg to back in my clubbing days). If you can, go teaching internationally.
    I wouldn't give up on teaching if I was you, but I would give up on teaching in the UK. It's only going to get worse.
  10. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter


    Most people , even those who have never set in a classroom before, would realise that you are trying to do the impossible. Teaching only your subject specialism would be grueling enough, yet to be asked to teach four others that you have never taught before alongside your role as HoD is insanity. This is one of the craziest things I have read on here. Not that you are crazy, but what you are being asked to do. Just planning all those subjects and marking it wouldmtake you hours every day.

    When are you supposed to fit in intervention sessions, eating and sleeping?

    No wonder the person who had this job before you is off sick...and if you are expected to do the same work you might go down the same route.

    I agree that you should go and ask for reasonable help. If you can't get reasonable conditions, then I would resign and either look for a teaching post without HoD responsibilities or go on supply until you decide what you want to do.

    Speak to your union about references and leaving dates according to your contract.

    Call the TES network for support, but ultimately you are going to go to the Head and explain your situation; he or she may have the wisdom to see that if they don't take action another staff member will be off I'll and then wind up leaving.

    I am really sorry you have found yourself in this situation as it must be awful. I workmas a supply teacher and at least when I have an awfulmday Imcan take a break from it. Just day to day supply can be grueling, so I can't imagine the pressure you are under. Speak to your Head as soon as you can.
    Vcurtis28 likes this.
  11. e_rift

    e_rift New commenter

    I'd decline the middle management training if i were you, I've seen numerous teachers tied into these 2-3 hour additional meetings every weeks when under going this. That added pressure is the last thing you need.
  12. Vcurtis28

    Vcurtis28 New commenter

    Wow thank you much everyone for your words and wisdom! I'm on a major job hunt to see what's around education wise outside of a school setting before I commit and resign. i assume that the usual notice period of a half term still counts even though I'm only a month or so in and on probation? Just so I don't get any nasty shocks when I go see the principal ! P.s would it be the principal who I resign to or my line manager ???
  13. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

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