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Christmas or Summer?

Discussion in 'Retirement' started by montyjacs, Aug 30, 2015.

  1. montyjacs

    montyjacs New commenter

    I've been reading the thread about feelings about not having to go back to school with envy as I gear up for September 1st.

    I have taken my Teacher's pension from September whilst continuing to work PT for one more year. I teach three days a week now having stepped down from a SLT post two years ago and have enjoyed the opportunity to simply focus on teaching once more. I'm 56, well on the way to 57, and as Sept 1st approaches I can no longer remember why I didn't just finish in July.

    But I didn't so...

    Do I do the year as I have set out to do and as my finances are arranged to do (although it would not be disastrous to finish at Christmas) or do I write my letter and survive the horrid first term by knowing I am finishing? I feel a little guilty at the thought of leaving examination classes (A level specifically) at Christmas but I know I'm not indispensable.

    Has anybody had a similar experience or any thoughts about finishing at Christmas or in the summer?
  2. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    I remember reading somewhere on here that Easter was the best time to go as you had all the lengthening evenings and good weather ahead of you for 'settling in to retirement' before the dark nights set in.

    I went in the summer and really August was just like a normal year - catching up on jobs etc. It wasn't until the clocks went back in October that I realised I wasn't going back.

    On the other hand I had a wonderful last term. As I taught loads of exam classes, I had plenty of gained time. With no planning for next year I had a relaxed 'ease in' to leaving, clearing out years of stuff, ensuring everything was set up for my replacement etc and no evening or weekend work.
    ScotSEN likes this.
  3. scgf

    scgf New commenter

    I'm going at Christmas. I will be 58 years and 9 months old. I reckon the shortest day is in December so it's all good after that :)
  4. montyjacs

    montyjacs New commenter

    Thanks lizziescat and scgf. I always intended to work until I was 60 but that's just not going to happen! I will turn 57 just after Christmas and with an impending ofsted, new GCSE specification, new A level specification and an entirely new and not exactly sensible way of assessing KS3 this year I am sorely tempted. If only I was any good at making decisions!
  5. Nikkibell811

    Nikkibell811 New commenter

    Hi montyjacs.

    Not quite the same but I left the full time madness in July with plans to work supply for a couple of years before taking my pension. However I have now decided to take my pension in January on my 56th birthday as I don't even really want to do supply. As soon as I made that decision (only a week or so ago), it felt totally right. I have a few supply days booked in at a lovely local school and I may continue to do that on an ad hoc basis ............or I may not :)
  6. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    I waited until the summer. I think that the autumn term is the hardest of the lot, while (at least if you teach exam classes in secondary) the summer is quite cushy. Plus, leaving school in July means you get paid for the summer holiday. Just knowing that you are leaving makes OFSTED etc easier to cope with.
  7. jago123

    jago123 Established commenter

    As you have said that you have stepped down from SLT and gone part time, I feel that it is necessary to continue to work until the summer, unless there are any other circumstances in your personal life resulting in retiring early. As you only work 3 days a week, use this time to wind down from a long and exhausting teaching career and gradually prepare for retirement.
  8. jacob

    jacob Lead commenter

    I have arranged to go phased retirement down to three days from 1st November. But I hate it all. The management have a collective IQ barely in double figures. They plan nothing then blame us when it goes wrong. They override my decisions when it suits them. I just feel like saying stuff your job and walking and taking the full pension (I could probably even get my doctor to sign me off for the notice period with stress). Every day is full of yet more **** that has gone wrong, is not my fault, but I am the point of contact with the students. I am filled with guilt that I will be letting the students down, but this is where the slimeballs that run the place have you every bloody time.
  9. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    If you are not happy and can afford it financially, leave. No one is irreplaceable - don't feel guilty. You do loose a bit financially as the holiday entitlement is biased towards the end of the year, but it is not that much of an issue.
  10. Dunteachin

    Dunteachin Star commenter

    Don't make yourself ill, Jacob! Do the sums and walk away, if you can. It's not worth all the aggro. The kids will be fine.
  11. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    Sorry I'll try again
  12. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

  13. lindenlea

    lindenlea Star commenter

    Struggling to quote here. What I want to say is "I agree with Dunteachin! it's a job jacob. Do not worry about the kids. Think of yourself now."
  14. frangipani123

    frangipani123 Lead commenter

    Jacob, I've read a number of your posts and you've seemed very unhappy at work for some time. I've recently left my job because I felt so stressed and can identify with some of the comments you make here. Take care of yourself, no-one is irreplaceable and although you will be missed, your students will cope. If you do feel too unwell to work do get signed off by your doctor. As for me, I feel a huge sense of relief that I no longer have to go in there every day, and my friends are all commenting on how much more relaxed I am. I have some anxiety about money but I know I will cope. Go for it!
  15. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    Only just caught up with this thread

    As others have said put yourself first for your last 12(?) months. If you are so ill that the dr thinks you should be signed off - don't fight it. You don't get a second chance with your health. Hope everything works out for you.
  16. montyjacs

    montyjacs New commenter

    Somehow things slotted into place in my mind over the weekend and my decision became clear. I handed in my notice today and will be leaving at the end of this term. Huge relief. Now I need to make some plans!

    Jacob, I sincerely hope things become clear for you too and that you find peace of mind.

    Thank you to everyone for their input.
    ScotSEN likes this.
  17. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    I went last Christmas, didn't actually retire, but went fully self employed in something that I was doing p/t. I'm 52 so not in a retiring position anyway.

    I nearly went in the summer but wasn't really decided then and resigned on my birthday last October. You won't regret it montyjacs. The hardest part was trying not to grin too much and not keep saying "I don't care really, it doesn't affect me". I remember walking down the corridor from the car park the first day back after October half term and thinking about the day and realising it was the last time ever I'd be back at school after a holiday. Floated all the way to my room on a smile :D

    I see people from school fairly regularly, the first comment is usually on how unstressed and relaxed I look, I wasn't unusually stressed, just like everyone else.

    I had lots of exam groups, they survived and did fine. I, decided after 25 years of giving to schools it was time to think about me and my family, the people who try to make you feel guilty couldn't give a **** about the kids, they are concerned about their own job and headaches
    ScotSEN likes this.
  18. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    I'm about the same age as Mangleworzle but leaving at Christmas but with a job outside teaching to go to.

    Nothing wrong with finishing at Christmas at all. They'll manage without you.
  19. Twinklefoottoe

    Twinklefoottoe Senior commenter

    I'm now 51 and seriously thinking of jacking it all in. Not being married with no kids, having two houses, one rented out for £800 a month and enough savings till I'm 60 is helpful, although my teacher's pension will only be about £11k if I take it at 60.

    I'm sick of collecting 'data' about students, having to assess students just two weeks after starting the Autumn term, tracking pupil premium students and having to document every strategy weekly to help every individual student, having to get students to print out everything in IT, mark it, comment on their feedback, justifying my development plan for the department in endless meetings, tracking what the teachers do, getting them to justify everything they do, endless meetings, having to set work for supply teachers because we won't pay enough to attract a good teacher who can put up with all the rubbish and the 60 hour weeks, and inhaven't even mentioned the 5% of kids who make teaching a nightmare and an SLT who are next to useless dealing with behaviour!
  20. Twinklefoottoe

    Twinklefoottoe Senior commenter

    Life is too short and I need a change. Maybe some voluntary teaching, or supply, or just relax a bit somewhere warm and reassess the meaning of life. I can't keep this pressure up. It's killing me slowly.

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