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Feeling depressed - more a rant than anything

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Hopeful25, Oct 19, 2019.

  1. Hopeful25

    Hopeful25 New commenter

    Sorry for the long post.

    I started a new post in September (my first permanent one) and was initially really excited. I now feel really low, as if all the confidence I built in my teaching last year- I thought I was a good teacher and received some very kind praise from my colleagues and SLT there, only having to leave because there was no room at the inn so to speak- has been completely wiped out and then some. I am absolutely dreading Monday and have cried more times in this last half term than in my collective previous years teaching. I work in a SEN/behavioural needs school and my class has several children whom are extremely aggressive- my class team and I have all been hit and kicked many times since September.

    I have found as well that staff can be quite gossipy- things said/done in passing can be around our small school in minutes- and there can be some quite snide comments at times. I have found one member of SLT to be quite patronising (it was a relief when one of my class team said this first as I thought I was being over sensitive) which also knocks me, they speak to me as if I'm one of the children. Advice is contradictory so if I do one thing advised by one member of staff, it is a fairly safe bet I'll be criticised by another (or, more than once, the same member of staff) for doing that same thing. At times, this is done in front of the children, to me and the TAs in the class which I feel undermines all of us. I don't mind being given feedback, value it highly if I feel it is with the genuine intent to help me improve, I don't like being made to feel 'told off' in front of the children, and I don't like seeing it done to the other adults in class whom I know are doing their very best. I know they have been very upset and low as well.

    There are several other things upsetting me but I don't want to put them here for fear I have gone too much into detail already. This is not so much an ask for advice as a rant in an attempt to get some things off my chest. I am seriously considering leaving teaching as all the little things that used to give me a normal level of teacher stress now feel amplified, and far outweigh the things I normally love about the job. In truth, I have come to feel rather useless at it no matter how hard I work, and worry I have been put off of it permanently.
  2. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Sorry to hear you're in this place.
    First task is to get to half term. Small places can be very small if the dynamic is wrong.
    You have a week to decide whether to plod along or whether to jump ship. Life is too short for long term bad jobs.
    It sounds as if there is a lack of managerial clarity, with conflicting and self contradictory advice causing you confusion.
    It also sounds as if the management are not dealing well with the violence. Is it being logged? Are there consequences for the children?
    Think about writing down an edited version of your post, and having a serious discussion with your head. You are not getting the support you need in a challenging working environment. Are they going to deliver, or will you have to walk?
    agathamorse and steely1 like this.
  3. Hopeful25

    Hopeful25 New commenter

    Thanks for your message.

    I am tempted to leave straight off the bat, but I am the main breadwinner in my household so I need something to move onto first. I do have a couple of options on the table, but they need a bit more thinking out before I can jump into them. I also worry about my reference as I have only been there 7 weeks, though I think I could go back to supply if I really need to. I've never been in the position where I have wanted to leave so early before.

    The violence is being logged but the consequences that we are allowed to give the children are ineffective for various reasons (e.g. they miss going on a trip, their parents make sure they get the same thing/make up treat after school; they miss playtime, they prefer to be indoors anyway...). It is very frustrating. I think it doesn't help that me and that particular member of SLT mentioned above do not see eye to eye on certain things regarding behaviour.

    I hope to discuss things with the head in our meeting to set my targets as at least then it will be guaranteed to be in private.
  4. ms honey

    ms honey New commenter

    Sorry you're having a rough time, it sounds like a toxic environment, do these places ever get better? I wouldn't wait to find out, life really is too short, take care
    agathamorse and steely1 like this.
  5. katelewis1008

    katelewis1008 New commenter

    Badly managed and dysfunctional, it's probably not going to get better and long term you should move on.

    However this is the worst half term and things might settle down slightly if you think you might have to see the year out. A new school and new class can be a steep learning curve and things might even out a bit.

    Now you've got the measure of people and situations can you put some strategies in place to lessen their effect on you?

    Being hurt at work on a regular basis really isn't acceptable though.

    You must be exhausted and extremely worried. Take a trip to the GP, you must keep yourself well.

    Remember it is only a job and people seem to put up with much more in teaching than they should.

    Take care x
    agathamorse and steely1 like this.
  6. Hopeful25

    Hopeful25 New commenter

    Thanks for the responses and sorry it has taken me so long to respond. I am now off with WRS and I am so angry and upset with myself. I think it might be time to go, do something else. I just need to be a bit careful, money-wise.
    agathamorse likes this.
  7. mothorchid

    mothorchid Star commenter

    Sorry to hear that you're so ill you need to be signed off - but glad that under those circumstances you have been signed off.
    Make no decisions at the moment - you're not thinking clearly, I imagine. I suspect you need to be angry and upset with the school, rather than yourself, but this is hard to acknowledge when you feel so low.
    You now have breathing space. make the most of it - be genlte on yourself, go out every day for some fresh air and daylight. Eat well, and try to sleep as much as you need to.
    Take care, keep posting.
    agathamorse and Lara mfl 05 like this.

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