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Dear Headtachers - Why I left teaching - Tips and Advice

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by claire20000, Feb 6, 2012.

  1. A Reply to ScienceGuy:
    I was well aware of the pay isuues. But I am also aware that here in London a Tube driver earns more than I do at present. Isn't it silly that teachers don't? If the pay was better then it woudl attract the better graduates into the job. The low pay drives us into the private sector. My point was that even with me dropping the private sector in favour of teaching (not something that most people in a cushy job would even try), after the experiences within teaching and the way you feel "unappreciated" due to the low money (not something I could feel would have been an issue - until I actually tried the job) then it means that I was driven right back into the private sector.
    A good graduate who gave it a chance and had the governemnt spend apporx £7,000 on me to train to teach - just went right back where he came from due to the experience and actions of the teachers and culture.
    On the following comment,......
    "You also seem to think that being well educated also leads to being a better teacher; more qualifications mean you understand your subject better but not that you can communicate it well."
    Do you think you are the first to ever say that to me. There in lies the problem. I found that in the job people would say that to try and make themselves feel better as they didn't have such strong and powerful qualifications as me. Their own insecurities leaking out - like as if there is trade off. Great qualifications means not as good a teachers as poor qualifications. I have to say that is utter rubbish and here is why.....
    If someone has learned and understood mathematcis enough to gain top grades, then they know all the ways to learn that subject successfully - and hence they can pass those things on. I am an excellent communicator. In work, they think it is because of my teaching experience that I am good at presentations and explaining things. But in truth, I was good before I joined teaching.
    I think you are working to an urban myth to make insecure teachers feel better. I went along with it - just to please them when I worked in schools. But my kids getting above average grades in the sets I too spoke for itself. Plus, the kids knew I was passionate about mathematcis and I wanted them to be the best - like a fotball manager wanting his team to beat the rest - and it spured them on.
    I was sad to leave them - not to leave the adults.
    Thank you for your well wishes.
  2. Reply to September:
    Thanks September. Trust me - I showed my fair share of guts in that job. The management realised I woudl stand up to them every step of the way. The AST who did the usual viewing of my lesson even said in an e-mail "thank you for letting me view your lesson today...." as she gave my feedback. She was trodding very carefully with me as I had been pushed around by them and then was fighting back.
    Oh, I could haev continued. And the teaching would have became like what Fletch does in a episode of Porridge. He says you can "beat" the system but you can win "small victories". But when I was doing such, I realised that my attitude and deamener was becoming like those "awkward" teachers that I didn't like. I realised that may be simply how they survive in the job and that may be the only way I can too.
    I didn't like what I saw in the mirror and that was the true reason that I left.
    But you are right - find inspirational headteachers and aim to work for them.
    That is why some staff in schools have worked there 20+ years yet in other schools there is a high turnover. If you can "click" with the way things are done and the school is right for you, then you would fear leaving for a different one incase it was a nighmare and you regret it. But until then, you can move at will - don't stay if unhappy.
    I hope there are headteachers out there who read this post and take positve action too.
    I fear the ones that do - will be the ones that staff recognise as inspirational already, and the ones that don't, will be the ones that never would have anyway.
  3. I think it comes down to a simple fact though whether you were really cut out for teaching. Don't get me wrong I'm not one of these individuals that spouts off that this is a vocation and I'm doing what I was always destined to do because I'm not, but in truth when all is said and done there is something about the job that keeps me going and it's not the money or even the holidays. I guess you either have that or you don't.

    You should be applauded for giving it a go but like others have already said, your experiences are not a reflection of the hard working teams that are working in the majority of our schools across the country.
  4. Reply to DaisysLot:
    I can't help but notice that you don't actually mention what your "main subject" is in your post.[​IMG] I'd rather not get into a "who has the best qualifications arguement" as I am confident it would be me, but I can say that I have never rated Oxford or Cambridge as top universities.
    Mainly, they don't admit the best - everyone knows they admit the richest - and money cannot buy intelligence.
    Any red brick uni is pretty much as good as another - some compare differently depending on subject but no wide variation. I went to a red brick myself.
    I grew up fairly poor as a council tenant - so never would have got accepted in Oxford or Cambridge. Some from my school applied and got interviews - all were rejected. All went on to get top degrees and are earning a lot of money now - most as Actuaries where at age 35 they are on over £100,000 in London plus bonus. Pretty dull work though (they will be the first to admit it) - but they like the money. I like the more client facing appraoch, and hence - not an Actuary myself. Plus, teaching set me back a few years from those guys. I will catch up in due course. My salary is not bad for my age.
    So when people show off about Oxford or Cambridge, I would say they are really showing off about passing the interview. Because had I applied and been accpeted, do you think that I wouldn't have left with "a degree without honours"? So therefore - it is no big deal.
    Plus, sorry, can't resist this -------- they give you a "BA" for a mathematics degree!!!!! - LOL - they can't be that smart then! hehehe! [​IMG]
  5. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Well if you've never rated Oxford or Cambridge they must be ****. Haha. Can I have £5 from the troll hunter?
  6. Now I'm not one to normally jump on my soap box, but I have to completely disagree with you on this one. I'm not now saying that you are a poor teacher, but what I will say is that a first class honours degree from Oxbridge or wherever else does not automatically qualify you as an amazing teacher. My parents have three first class honours degrees between them, in Marine Biology, Civil Engineering and Applied Mathematics. But not for one moment (and they have agreed with this on many occasions) would they make even satisfactory teachers. Why? Because they have neither the patience nor the mental toughness, to cope with 30 pupils day in day out. It has nothing to do with intelligence or level of degree, it is personality, commitment and drive that make an outstanding teacher. Some of the best teachers in my school obtained 2:2s from old polytechnic universities. They, by their own admission, has a 'great time' at university and this is why they didn't get a 2:1 or even a first. But now that they are professionals, they listen, they care, and they work exceptionally hard.
    Here endeth the lesson.
  7. Reply To Curly Girly:
    I'm afraid that since you responed to my message - then I will respond to yours. You will not "control the situation" after you have spouted your comments so you can have the last word.
    You said...
    "One of the worst teachers I have ever worked with had a PHD, they were hopeless with children who were not particularly bright"
    Well - that seals is - a sample of 1.
    All people with top qualifications are not as good a teacher as those with bottom qualifications. Sample size = 1.
    I could equally say that the lady who didn't have a PGCE and came in though the many back doors into teaching was useless. So therefore, anyone in teaching without at least a masters degree is useless.
    No offence to other posters - just trying to make a point to CurlyGirly - you are bright people, so I am sure you will "get it" the point I was making.
    PHD candiate useless with slower kids. Ok, simple solution to that one then. How about you give them the top classes only and perhaps you could volunteer for these less able children yourself. The PhD person would therefore be better with the top kids as they will "click"
    You are clealry one of those "chip on th shoulder - can do no wrong - is it everyone else with the problem" kind of teachers I was taling about. Saying that because I typed in a post on a message board and don't check for proper grammer and spelling that I am no loss to the teaching profession then I would be h............- hahahah!!!! I can't even go on - what a waste of my time. I have worked with people just like you. LOL [​IMG]
    P.S Jobs for toilet cleaner down the job centre have more than one applicant too! Means nothing. And if your attitue is "no loss" - then how can you say you care about the less able pupils?
    Because.... following your reasoning, then your arguement would be that there are more than enough pupils in the school, so if these less able are just put to one side, then,,,, no loss!
    Plus, when they get to 18 - I guess every child matters but only until that point. What if these incoherent ones are the ones who were in the lower classes, that you claim to care about. But when they are on your application pile....... no loss! [​IMG]

    Don't feel bad [​IMG] - I have a 1st in mathematics remember - in a reasoned arguement, you have no chance with someone like me. I guess if I worked in your school, you would therefore attempt to get your own way when realising that you are loosing the reasoned arguement by saying things like "oooh, I feel you are being very emotional today" or using some such language to attempt to get your own way. Wouldn't work with me Mrs! LOL :)
    Let's get back to the main post friends.
    Thank you all for your helpful and constructive comments thus far.
    My apologies for being sidetracked by this individual. But we have all known them in schools, I'm sure.
  8. Reply to remindmeagian:
    Apologies if it comes accross pompus and arrogant to you. I am sure it does to curly girly too, but I had better not put words in her mouth - big crime that!
    But remember, it comes across as pompus and arrogant TO YOU. To some people, it will come across as a genuine reflection on teaching.
    I always find it interesing that posts come across as rude, arrogant or annoying or pompus, to people who generally don't agree with them
    Funny that [​IMG]
  9. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    Claire - As the daughter of a postman living in a council house and attending a very bog standard comp. I was not a likely Oxbridge candidate. It's a shame your insecurities about your council house upbringing affected your confidence. Oxbridge will struggle with the loss.... Teaching however, will not.
  10. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Why would I feel bad? You're the one resorting to trolling on a website for a profession you reckon you left as an NQT but also reckon you were a hod in. Maybe you should've got your story straight before you started.
    I would suggest that whatever your qualification (and I sincerely doubt you have any given your appalling lack of reasoning, appalling spelling and atrocious grammar (note ar not er) it matters not a jot if you can't put a coherent post together.
    No chip on my shoulder, post away and make an **** of yourself, just don't expect to be taken seriously. You base your argument on dubious anectode but don't like it when people share their own extensive experience.
    Since you're clearly one of those people who needs to have the last word (hmmm I wonder why you didn't get on in schools ?) I give you my permission to do so ;)
  11. Reply to aw27:
    The reason I kept it up is because this is a forum - not an English GCSE.
    Who cares? Ok - you clealry do. I would know instantly how to get on your nerves in a school. Bad mistake revealing that. I am not one of those employees, but some will do things on purpose just to annoy you because they know it does and they will deny they are doing it on purpose and just "act thick" Hmmmm, I wonder where some staff could pick up some kind of behaviour like that from,,,,in a school. Hmmmmmmmmmm!
    Plus, one more reason...... because if I changed and took ages to type every little word neat and tidy, then it would show people like you that I care about your opinion.
    And through deductive reasoning...... I supose I guss wht I am sayng is....... [​IMG]
  12. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    Want some vinegar with your chip lol
  13. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    I suppose trolling and socking must be really difficult when you can't write or type coherently , it quickly becomes obvious who you are.
  14. Reply to newdiamondrings:
    Excellent point!!!!!!
    I guess I therefore must either:
    1. Be a total fraud or......
    2. Share my login with my friend ! [​IMG]
    Hmmmmm, which could it be?
    No one uses real names on this forum anyhow and so we never saw it as an issue sharing a login for posts.
    But if it pleases you, then I could set a new one up, all myself. [​IMG]
    Pretty easy to tell us apart though - a HOD and myself - who is no longer a teacher.
    Hope that answers your mystery CSI newdiamondrings:
  15. Reply to iamthewalrus
    But again - you fail to mention teachers who have 1st's who are great teachers!
    It is always mentioned how great these "2:2" people are..... and I am sure they are fab - I am not doubting that.
    But what I am saying is that when people "write off" the smarter people like myself in favour of such people all it smacks of you doing is trying to "big yourselves up" because you feel insecure.
    That is all it comes across as - and I am not the first person with a 1st who worked in teaching to realise that.
    I am not saying this is your usual pattern of thought. Curly girly is just looking for "a row" now and will never "get it", so I will ignore her remainig comments as I wanted this discussion to be serious and thought provoking, but what I am saying to you is that you need to balance with examples of people with toop grades who were also excellent teachers. I think you may understand things and have more of an open mind.
    Yes - some with 1st's are probably awful. But then so are some with 2:2's
    I loved the kids - I embarrassed people who had worked in the maths dept for 30 years by the results I got out of them, and they knew it. I enjoyed every minute of that. I truly did. If more peope like me were in the job - organised - efficient - willing to ensure a class doesn't run riot and will stand up to the bosses and parents - then I would have stayed - regardless of money.
    I take you points - I hope you take mine. [​IMG]
  16. Claire,
    you've certainly thrown the cat amongst the pigons.....that's one of the reason's I've resigned from my teaching post, the pedantic nature of people. Trivia triumphs over the real important issues. I haven't witnessed any empathy towards children in a long time. Sighs abound when a potential level 4 child leaves as "the data will be affected". Sad.
  17. ScienceGuy

    ScienceGuy Established commenter

    Exactly my point. You were the one that stated that you were a better teacher because you had a first but in reality degree class is not as important as other skills. (not irrelevant, just not as important). Still, I am not convinced, given your posts here so far, that your communication skills are as excellent as you claim!
  18. aw27

    aw27 New commenter

    Awwwww. Now you've made me want to cry......
    Ooops, better not get the last word in, that'll only p iss it off more!
  19. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    I think it's pretty obvious which one of these 2 options it is as both posts where you claim to be a failed nqt and a HOD share the same appalling spelling and grammar.
    You also share it with another poster who has a chip on their shoulder about heads. As for me looking for a row, I think it's pretty obvious from this thread that your posts are "designed" (in such a fashion as they are) to provoke. If I'd decided a profession wasn't for me (or found I wasn't up to it) the last thing I'd be doing is hanging around a website trolling to try and get a rise out of people. I think it would be more healthy to move on.
    I'm not sure why you feel heads need to "get it" there are hundreds of excellent teachers looking for jobs, all with better literacy skills, communication skills and a more positive attitude to their colleagues out there. Some of them even drive bmws. Your loss to teaching is personal to you rather than a loss to the profession.
  20. Point out where and when I said that I disagreed with you.
    I expressed no opinion at all did I?
    And your sarcasm in this response does come across as pompous and arrogant. Funny that....
    quod erat demonstrandum

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