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Can't face work

Discussion in 'New teachers' started by 4853Sarah, Feb 27, 2011.

  1. Hi, I'll try to keep this brief.
    I'm on a one year contract in a primary school and really don't like it for the following reasons.
    There is a child in class who has been diagnosed with a condition that means he operates at a much younger age than he is. I've been told that eventually he will need a statement but that the school won't go for one until he has had several months of IEPs.- I get no support with him. (he only got diagnosed after I pushed his mum to get one. The school said there was nothing wrong).
    I teach Year 1 and I am supposed to get 2 days TA support each week but this keeps getting pulled for various reasons such as cover in the school.
    I've asked several times to go on courses to develop myself to which I have been told that I have my whole career to develop myself. the only courses I can attend are ones that happen after school.
    My manager told me last week when I complained about using plans from 2004 that 'it was only a job'.
    The staff all call each other which causes me stress and I never quite know what people are saying about me. I've got loads of enthusiasm and excitement and yet as it is double form entry I have been told to follow what the other teacher does which means that the experience I am offering the children is not what I want it to be.
    The other class has a job share and they have meetings about what they are going to teach. My TA time gets taken to cover the class next door for these meetings and even though I am part of the team I can't go to the meeting as I have no cover for my class.

    The thought of going back tomorrow makes me feel ill. I have no support at home and have been told by my partner to get on with it and grow up. I know I only have 18 weeks left of teaching there but I really feel that I can't face it. I've seen a job that starts in May and lasts until March 2012. It is further away and is a more challenging school. My other half said I am stupid for thinking about applying for it.

    Would somebody please offer me some advice to be able to put my situation into perspective?

  2. Having chn working at different levels with different abilities is normal. I have a child who works at nursery level. Poor little chap he is. I don't quite understand why you would use that as a reason? I also had a few chn like that when i was an NQT and i did just get on with it. I was a teacher, there to teach and nurture the chn. I think your other half is right and you should listen to the good advice.

  3. You are in a difficult position, mainly because the school you are in is not offering adequate support. I think in most classes, be they primary or secondary, there is always one pupil that doesn't respond to the normal classroom rules for whatever reason. The fact that your pupil should be getting a statement (which you instigated) but which won't be forthcoming for several months is not acceptable. It's not just a matter of trying to deal with unruly behaviour, you have a pupil who actually should not be in your class due to his condition. The school has left you floundering and, unfortunately, your partner is not supporting you either.
    It's always hard to go it alone but I hope you have family to back you up. On the other hand, I think you must be doing very well to have got the diagnosis for this pupil after initiating it yourself. Obviously you know your stuff and are not afraid to put forward your case. I think that maybe you should go with what feels best for you. I can understand why your partner feels it is stupid to apply for another job at this stage, in the current economic climate and when you are not far from completing your contract. At the end of the day only you can decide what's best for you. However, from what you say you're already doing well and your opinions are taken on board by your school. No job is ever perfect. Yes, you may feel restricted at the moment but this job could eventually lead to great things if you are patient. Don't forget you are lucky to have a job at the moment, which is why your partner is perhaps less than sympathetic. I would say hang on in there, you seem to be doing great in class and should stop worrying about what others are thinking.
  4. I don't think I've explained myself properly. I have no problem having him in my class and this is not the reason I want to leave. The problem I have is that he has very specific needs and I told the school this from the start. I was told by his previous teacher and my manager that the problem was with his parents and not him (ie parents wanted something to be wrong with him). His diagnosis was completely missed and due to his complex behaviour and learning needs, if he does not have somebody working with him then he is not able to learn. I feel like I am letting him down by not being able to give him the support which I know that he needs. I also feel like I am letting the rest of the class down as he is violent towards others on a daily basis and needs constant supervision. Last week he had a pair of scissors to a child's face and did not understand why this was the wrong thing to do.
  5. Make sure you record everything, especially when you have asked for support. If anything dangerous happens then you have covered yourself because you have flagged it up.
  6. Your school is using you as a draft donkey. They want you in there, fixed term, to do the job to a level that will not give rise to awkward complaints, to keep your head down, cause as little inconvenience as possible and forget about any of the fancy stuff like professional development, genuine interest in children, NQT support package. Just shut up and get on with it. My goodness it sounds just like supply :)
    So do it. Get your head down and suck it up for 18 weeks. Make a calendar with coloured blocks for days you actually have to go in and enjoy crossing them off. I am not generally regarded as a champion of the whiner but there is no doubt that you have been treated shabbily by this school. As an experienced (though now retired) supply teacher, that is exactly the sort of attitude I would expect to encounter and put up with for the money and the convenience; it is not the sort of treatment I would wish to see meted out to a young NQT at the start of her career.
    I'd give up any idea of Making A Difference or learning anything particularly valuable to you as a teacher. Most schools have some degree of crapness about their arrangements but they don't usually toss them all at an NQT in her first job.
    But that's no reason for you to ruin your work record or lose money. You can't change the situation without detriment to yourself so change your attitude and tell your OH from me that he's a miserable git. I hope the next job works out much better for you.
  7. Sat here now feeling ill about going in again tomorrow. I've marked all the days on the calendar and it works out I have 80 teaching days left, which doesn't seem too much now I have broken it down. I'm normally such a positive person and so hard working. I want to do well by the children that I have and yet the systems in place are making it almost impossible.

    Thank you for replying
  8. If you're planning to not go in, try and come up with something less prone to judgementalism than "can't face it". It isn't unusual for NQTs to knock off when then the going gets tough but you really don't want to get a reputation this early on for not being able to cope.
    You are coping, you have coped, in a situation that's far from ideal. Don't just not turn up or say you're depressed/stressed. I can't tell from here if you did go in today. If you have, well done. If you still feel the same by Friday, plan some continuous off - one block of 3 is always better than 3 odd days. Develop an "ear infection" or a "tummy bug". Plan the time to catch up or rest or just do nothing. Taking random days off with no structure doesn't help your mental health long term. Planning and lying about it is much more useful!!!
    Never mind this one misplaced kid - you will encounter that again and again in your career. He will either be sorted out after you've gone or he won't and you'll never know. Take the advice offered about reporting and recording every single incident though, dated and with a column for "action resulting" - which I'm betting will remain blank. That's your ass covered. Kudos for trying to make a difference here but you will be happier in the long run if you accept that it isn't always possible, and usually for reasons that make you bang your head on the desk.
    I do hope you have passed on my warmest felicitations to your partner. If a man tells me I need to grow up and am stupid, I tend to exchange him for one who shows a bit more support and respect. Do what you think best regarding this job, not what he does.
  9. Hi Sarah,
    I was really sorry to read your message, you sound very down about it all and I sympathise greatly, being miserable in a job sucks!
    I would say that it's good to go with your gut feeling. It sounds like you are a dedicated and conscientious teacher, but this isn't the right school for you. My advice would be to say to yourself "I'm leaving on such a date," make a calendar (as another poster recommended), tick off the days and in the meantime plan lots of enjoyable and relaxing things for the weekends so the job shrinks in importance and you start to feel a bit more human again. I think you need to stop giving everything to the school because it sounds like they are just squeezing you dry and will continue to do so until you have to leave with stress. Protect yourself from this as best you can by the above techniques and get applying to those other jobs that interest you!! I'm sure you'll feel better once you realise there are alternatives and if this job isn't working for you then another one will.
    Finally, I'm disappointed to hear about your unhelpful partner! I completely disagree with the 'buck up and get on with it,' attitude, it is just unhelpful, unkind and clearly has made you feel even worse about the whole thing. It's right there arent as many jobs out there now, but if you got this one you'll get another one. Why should someone else get another job over you? While you look for a new partner (lol!) can you get support from your friends and family? Get planning some nice activities with them and confide in one or two who will be helpful to get you through this tough time.
    Wishing you all the best :)
    Currant X

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