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Cover Supervisor- More Problems- Breaking point near

Discussion in 'Behaviour' started by suertesamp, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. suertesamp

    suertesamp New commenter

    Just got back to work after the easter break. Already had enough. I work in a secondary school. This is only my 6th month. I had a very disruptive year 9 English class. Glue was being thrown around the classroom while my back was turned, children were rude and would not be quiet when I was giving instructions or taking the register. It would be easy enough with only a handful disrupting the lesson but when I have a class of 31 and only 5 are behaving this causes me major problems. Halfway through I stopped the class and in a furious rage I yelled at how displeased I was with the state of the class. Four students were sent to isolation. The children did not care that they got sanctions and responded sarcastically when given them.
    I have depression and some anxiety issues, and this stress makes things much worse. While driving, have even had recurring thoughts of crashing my car head on into another driver to get out of having to live another day.
    Went home in an even worse mood than I had when I arrived to work. my partner was very supportive and calmed me down, and decided we should go out for dinner. For a short time I felt better. But I woke up feeling absolutely terrible, with what happened still fresh in my mind. I had an argument with my partner this morning over something very silly, (we don't usually argue). Now I am considering leaving my partner because it isn't fair that she should have to take on my stress and look after me. I should deal with this myself somehow. Accordingly, I am strongly considering handing in my notice at the end of the month, getting paid then looking for another job while living on the money I have. I would even go back to doing factory work or retail and getting minimum wage. What enjoyment I get out of life is only temporary now.
  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter


    Sorry, not to have responded earlier, but only just saw your post.

    Please do not think you have to look after yourself. Your partner will want to help you, but you must be honest with her.

    I can understand how working as a cover supervisor in a school where behaviour is challenging would add to your stress and anxiety. You need to go to your GP and discuss all what you have written, so they can help you.

    If you decide to leave your job, you may have to do as you say something where you will get the minimum wage; however, perhaps you could retrain for another field or get another job and work your way up to something better paid.

    You are trying to do the impossible: managing 31 students many of whom are misbehaving would test the most experienced teachers.

    I work as a supply teacher and have noticed the class sizes are creeping up to more and more classes with 31 and sometimes 32 or more. It is very difficult to teach and monitor classes with so many students in them and, if as you say, there are many misbehaving, it becomes a thankless task. I have worked in secondary schools for eight years and the behaviour is becoming more and more difficult to manage in many classes. A cover supervisor I know with years of experience told me she had gone home to cry on many a night.

    Please phone your GP ASAP and also The Education Support Partnership ( details at the top of workplace dilemmas).
    geordiepetal and JohnJCazorla like this.
  3. Robfreeman

    Robfreeman Occasional commenter

    Firstly this may be a very disruptive class as a cover supervisor im assuming you have been given this class from someone who isnt going to be in for a while. Is it possible that this class was disruptive before you had them and are trying to push you. Student will try with a new teacher to break them and make them cry. I was a supply teacher and saw this a few times, its awful but happens. Also the behaviour system of the school may not be adequate for the level of behaviour.

    Secondly students like to make you shout it looks like you have lost control, if even for a minute students know you have run out of ideas. There are counters to this such as making the naugties go out or calling another member for support I know this is probably sucking eggs but they want to make you shout perhaps speaking to the HoD before hand and stating you might need to send a few their way or an SLT drop in.You need to make them loose in the long run, also you need to praise and reward the five workers thats really important otherwise it all looks negative.

    Thirdly you are more important dont break up with your partner. I know how bad it is when the depression kicks in you arent yourself, you may need to explain how depression can change behaviour. Are you still on antidepressants if not maybe take you GF to your next appointment so she gets a bit more understanding. The kids arent being personal they would be horrible to anyone ive had classes where students just enjoy winding up the teacher just because they can. Also remember that depression and anxiety can affect how you think to, maybe you need to talk to someone.
    pepper5 and JohnJCazorla like this.
  4. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    Absolutely agree with @pepper5 but should you decide to stick it out instead.

    Get support lined up. If isolation exists in your school then there also exists the infrastructure to handle the lesser behaviour. Can you get an SLT or pastoral manager to give you direct support with this Year 9 class? Unlike us over-paid slackers teachers you're an asset to the school being cheap (and expensive and time-consuming to replace) so they will be glad to keep you on.
    pepper5 likes this.
  5. koopatroopa

    koopatroopa Senior commenter

    If you haven't already, see your doctor and say this. You need help with your health not your job. You shouldn't be working of you're feeling so bad that you're having suicidal thoughts. Please, please seek help.
    pepper5 likes this.
  6. suertesamp

    suertesamp New commenter

    Thank you for helpful words.
    Quick Update:
    I have spoken to some of my colleagues about this, although not my line manager because he is taking time off at the moment. After Monday I was strongly considering typing up a letter of resignation but I have decided to hold off for now because I am still not entirely sure about quitting.
    The week got much better after typing this post. Was by no means perfect, but tolerable. I am happy with that.
    In terms of going to the doctor I have been unable to get an appointment as of yet but I will keep trying. I will certainly be mentioning my thoughts about suicide etc. I haven't had any more since that one I mentioned before.
    Further to this I have also reasoned that if I can make it until May, I can make it until the end of the school year. That is when my contact ends anyway and I will certainly not be coming back, even if I am offered a position. I'm going back to university to do a masters.
    JohnJCazorla and pepper5 like this.
  7. sarah_dann1

    sarah_dann1 Occasional commenter TES Behaviour peer advisor

    Hi @suertesamp how are you doing?

    Really glad to hear that things have got a little better. I hope you have also managed to see a doctor this week? There are other ways of making money and a job must not make you feel the way you have described. Really good to hear you have discussed it at work. Are you getting some support there?

    What will you study back at university? That sounds like a great opportunity to re-group and decide what you would like to do next.

    Do let us know how you are doing,
    pepper5 likes this.
  8. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi suertesamp

    Yes, glad to hear you have had a better week.
  9. lovejoy_antiques

    lovejoy_antiques Senior commenter

    I often drive past binmen on my way into work and think: you lucky ********!!!
    pepper5 likes this.
  10. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    I know lovejoy. I sometimes do exactly the same. Binmen make good money too.

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