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Ex teachers - what do you do Now?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by dauralora, Sep 14, 2017.

  1. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    I think the release from the feeling that nothing you do is good enough (in teaching) has been the best thing for me.

    To move to a completely different career and be successful in it within the space of 2 years has been a revelation. The virtual pats on the back that come from clients and my boss are so welcome after 5 or 6 years of negativity that frankly just wears you down.

    It IS a big step to take (especially when you've been in teaching a long time) but I do not know of a single person who regrets making the move.

    So to those people thinking of making a leap into the unknown then my advice would be DO IT.
  2. ralphee11

    ralphee11 New commenter

    I left teaching last Christmas after 3 years in a primary school.

    At first I had no idea what I was going to do, so I did a bit of supply to help pay the bills. I only did this for a month or so and then I got a job working for an educational reading team.

    I have a basic salary and commission on top so I actually earn almost double what I did as a teacher. As much as I miss the kids I have no regrets.

    Don't be scared, take the risk! It will all work out in the end.
  3. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    Almost certainly this will be via the Chartered Legal Executive pathway on which I trained, which is a far more cost-effective way to qualify. CILEx has apprenticeships for school-leavers now and employers often fund the training. I am sceptical that any employer would pay for a school-leaver to do a traditional full-time 3 year law degree + one year LPC.
  4. missteach2005

    missteach2005 New commenter

    It is really good and useful to read this post as I too have come to the conclusion that at the end of this academic year I am leaving this job. After 13 years I am sick and tired of the demands for little reward. I want my health back (which has been massively hit since September as I have had a long time of absence from school too due to it) , and I am also seeking help for issues I have, a lot exacerbated by this job.

    I am prepared to do anything. Admin. Tesco. Something else in education, just not teaching as I know it. Ideally I would leave sooner but feel I need to get myself sorted.

    In ym absence I have since found out that my Y11 GCSE group have been taken away from me, which is a blesing in disguise as I no longer need their exam results and lets me honest, the stress of it all. I just want to get to the end of the year and recover from this job before embarking on a whole new adventure.
    felicity5183, TCSC47, Shedman and 4 others like this.
  5. lsmith21

    lsmith21 New commenter

    I 'took early retirement' just over 18 months ago (Long story; the usual unreasonable demands and lack of support when I needed it).
    I took time to 'sort my head out' and re-trained as a Civil Funeral Celebrant. Why on earth I didn't do it years ago I don't know but, it's the best thing I did.
    Am happy and content now and don't worry about targets any longer!
  6. September

    September New commenter

    I am 1 term out of teaching and have no regrets. Have had offers to do intervention work this term which I am considering. Retraining in finance at the moment. Will be happy to take an admin position. Teacher friends ask me if I will miss the holidays. I would rather have a job with 4 weeks annual leave and all my evenings and weekends to do what I want and not to be spending them marking and planning. Good luck to anyone who decides it is time to pack it in. Best thing that I did.
    emmahowie1, henrypm0, MissSci and 9 others like this.
  7. SKO143

    SKO143 New commenter

    Have read this (and other similar threads) with interest. I too am an ex-teacher, 6 years out of the profession. I was forced out by a bullying HOD, though I just thought I was useless at the time. Hindsight is a wonderful thing. I walked out one day after calling my Mum in tears (after weeks of 60+ hour weeks, unrealistic demands and no support) and she said "You don't have to live like this" so that was it - straight to the doctor, signed off with WRS (not surprising as by then I couldn't do much more than cry) with no intention of ever going back or any idea of what to do.

    I had quite a lot of examining experience with a leading exam board so looked at picking up some more with their international sister organisation and then saw a PT job advertised working in their subject team. Applied and went for the interview just as my notice period (agreed with the school) ran out. Got it and started such that I have no gap in my CV - very lucky, I know. Just worked 2 days a week to start with on live assessment material and supporting examiners and was reunited with my family properly. We had to cut back in comparison to when I was teaching but we managed and our quality of life made up for it. No more Sunday desperation. I picked up another day of work when the then Education Secretary was talking about one exam board per subject to do research and then the exam board went through a re-organisation and I got a FT job. I was there through all the redevelopment of GCSEs and A levels in my subject which was massively interesting, challenging and rewarding - working with DfE, Ofqual, consultants etc. Once that finished in Summer 2016, I applied for a job in the Civil Service and have been working on General Qualifications and having the MOST marvellous time, earning more than I ever would have in teaching without SLT and with a good whack of holiday for the last 15 months!

    So...there IS life out there after teaching and it can be great. I will never ever go back. I miss the buzz of the lightbulb moment that the kids get when they finally understand something but that happens so infrequently in comparison to how hard the rest of it is. I salute all of you who are still at the chalk face because it is a soul-destroying task and not enough people give you the recognition and credit you deserve. Well done for sticking it as long as you have but it is no longer a 'job for life'.
  8. xxxBlueBellexxx

    xxxBlueBellexxx New commenter

    Indeed - it is not a "job for life" in any sense :(
  9. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    Yes Def sort out any health issues before making any life changing decisions. You need to make a decision soon before you become seriously ill.Call your GP ASAP.
  10. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    So proud of you and your happy story
    Bless you !
    emmahowie1 and SKO143 like this.
  11. CAAC

    CAAC New commenter

    I’m looking for out too. I’m currently on maternity leave (which my head made blatantly clear he was not pleased about). I’m due to go back in June and to be honest the thought fills me with fear and dread. I’ve been teaching for 15 years, it’s all I’ve ever known and I used to love it but a change in SLT has completely changed the dynamics of the school and now I feel like I’m useless and can’t return.
    I need another job but have such low self esteem due to being told I’m rubbish, I feel like I can’t do anything else. I am an ICT teacher and know little about Computing so it’s no wonder that the head wants rid of me. I am quite good at design but ICT was my forte.

    Any advice on how to get out/positions to look for, much appreciated. I can’t afford to take too much of a pay cut either, which doesn’t help.
    henrypm0 likes this.
  12. Charloo

    Charloo New commenter

    I’d love to run a private or small nursery/ daycare centre. I don’t know what the start up costs would be but I’m qualified to do it and I think I would be in my element!
    angel03 likes this.
  13. kinglard

    kinglard New commenter

    I'm an AHT with almost 25yrs of service but am currently at home having had 2 weeks off with stress and have now been given a note for the next three. Having felt fine pottering around at home I thought I would be reasonable to try and go back as the problems stem from school and the only way to tackle them is back at school. However, got sent home again and back to the GP...
    I have spent much of the morning crying but have spoken to a counsellor through Education Support Partnership, my union and been in touch with the local mental health team and have an appointment later in the week so I'm trying to take some practical action. The sickest thing though is I currently feel that I can't ever go back, I can't do the job and I now don't want to do the job, the end result of which means we won't be able to afford the mortgage etc and so already have an estate agent coming round in an hour just to see what kind of money we could get.
    I know I did a bloody good job as AHT in my school-before-last but left due to relocation for family reasons - without going into specifics I now feel that I am incapable of doing anything right and am absolutely broken into pieces. I know I'm not in the right frame of mind to make any serious decisions but I've looked at jobs online and feel (a) nothing appeals (b) I'm not qualified to do anything.
    I know I'm not alone in this and it's all still too new and raw, but if anyone who's been through similar could share their re-employment strategies, it would be much appreciated
  14. clarefrankie

    clarefrankie Occasional commenter

    i totally sympathise and empathasize with you..i have just started my 3rd week off with WRS...been teaching for 17yrs and never had time off before. i found that the 1st week i was really shocked that i had been signed off for 4 weeks, and felt angry at the SLT who had put me in this position, the 2nd week i tried not to think about it and concentrated on doing some decorating to get my mind off of it, i felt a bit better and definately less shocked, 2nd week i also felt well enough to go out with a coffee with a friend..half-way through the coffee though i ended up having a panic attack, it was different being 'out' rather then cossetted in my own home, like i say this is the third week and i m kinda feeling better..going on walks to forests etc...i'm still dreading going back but have decided to hang-on in there until handing y notice in end of May. Take advice from your local mental health team and try not to worry about the future. At the moment your illness is not giving you clarity of thought so it is impossible to look for other jobs reasonably.
    naomifree likes this.
  15. kinglard

    kinglard New commenter

    Thanks for the reply - just knowing you're not the only one is a a help in that it means it's not "just you".
    clarefrankie likes this.
  16. Teafrog79

    Teafrog79 New commenter

    @kinglard qualifications and skills are 2 different things. As a teacher, you have developed loads of skills that have become 2nd nature but when you start thinking about it, you end up with a long list.
    My qualifications are not relevant to the job I now do but ex-teacher skills have come very handy. In my very limited experience, British employers seem to be a lot more willing to give a chance to someone who is not qualified but who can demonstrate the skills.
  17. TCSC47

    TCSC47 Star commenter

    My goodness, a lot of us here! I did the classic thing of supply teaching for half a year and then got a job at an FE college teaching electricians. My teaching subjects had been secondary physics, science, technology, but I spent my own money (£1.5K to £2k by today's prices) a few years earlier on evening classes to obtain domestic electrician qualifications on the off chance that I might take that up, but mainly because I thought it might be interesting and to get my mind off the teaching day. I had really had enough of the growing work load taking over my life. Then I found an advert for electrical engineer lecturer and got the job. I was the only guy with both teaching quals and domestic electrician certificates, so perforce I ended up being in charge of a new course and a group of electricians, plumbers, chippies and brickies. I thoroughly enjoyed it and although FE has its problems, I felt I got something back for my efforts. However, took early retirement when I realised I had sufficient pension. I also got £5K / year for the next 4 years into my retirement, as a local councillor which was welcome and kept me busy. Sometimes you can sleepwalk into politics a la the Donald, but I had been an active member of my local party for the previous 30 years and was reasonably well known enough. I really enjoyed that, helping to run the community. Stood down at the last election and now waste too much time here.
    henrypm0 and frangipani123 like this.
  18. frangipani123

    frangipani123 Lead commenter

    So many people in this position, it's depressing. I have posted before about looking at university job websites, jobs.ac.uk is a good one. With your ICT and teaching experience you could be considered for roles within the learning technology area - universities depend on learning management systems like Canvas and Blackboard, and so need staff to support this via staff workshops, materials development, problem-solving for departments. The remit can be quite broad and is growing. There is a huge growth in online learning and distance learning, Your knowledge and skills would be valuable for this and other areas within a university. For example, for an experienced person:


    There is also Instructional Design which seems to be the same/similar:

  19. felicity5183

    felicity5183 Occasional commenter

    Finished my NQT year, realised teaching was making me miserable and depressed. Since January I’ve been working in museum education, and I’ve just come back from the doctors having asked for the go ahead to come off my antidepressants! I am the happiest I have been since I left University!
  20. felicity5183

    felicity5183 Occasional commenter

    And that’s with a £7,000 paycut! Money means nothing compared to happiness and a much better work life balance!
    henrypm0, clarity66, TCSC47 and 4 others like this.

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