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Half of all teachers in England threaten to quit as morale crashes

Discussion in 'Education news' started by Morninglover, Oct 4, 2015.

  1. cally1980

    cally1980 Established commenter

    I think about quitting on a daily basis but then when I consider what I'd actually do and enjoy doing in the same way I get a bit stuck. Yes, there is a lot of pointlessness in the workload, but the actual planning & teaching I enjoy. Wouldn't miss the marking though!
  2. cat2611

    cat2611 Occasional commenter

    I feel demoralised. I am fed up of working with an incompetent SLT and rude and arrogant teaching and administration colleagues. I'm also constantly tired, my house is a mess and I've forgotten what my husband looks like.

    I am 100% certain that my current teaching job is my last class teacher job. The only thing I can't decide is if I should leave at Christmas, Easter or Summer. Decisions, decisions!
    cissy3 and hermitcrabbe like this.
  3. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    But this is the big lie. Academies and free schools do exactly the same GCSEs as the rest of us, are judged in the same league tables, and have the same inspectors. Reading the posts here, it doesn't look as if working conditions or quality of education are any better in these schools.
  4. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I think the biggest problem is working hours, and a feeling that nothing you ever do is good enough. Mrs P has returned from 11.5 hours with no time for lunch, to be followed by several hours more work and a collapse into bed feeling inadequate because she didn't finish doing everything expected.
    cissy3 and hermitcrabbe like this.
  5. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    In my opinion, all the grief in education now has its roots in one thing:
    judging and ranking schools solely on their exam results.

    In the past, secondary schools may have published their exam results, but no one batted an eyelid. Individuals with outstanding results were praised, but the praise went to them, not the school.

    Primary schools didn't have exam results to publish.

    But as soon as results were used to draw up league tables, published for all to see, and those at the top were judged as the 'best' schools, the rot set in - all in the name of accountability. Schools began to skew their curriculum & teaching towards improving results; Ofsted had an easy way to decide beforehand which schools were good / failing; SLT could justify using the results to reward . / get rid of teachers; teachers' workload continues to increase in order to try and provide evidence for improvement...and so it goes.

    The genie is out of the bottle. It's too late now.
  6. MrMedia

    MrMedia Star commenter

    But why don't you like being measured by 'profits'? Why are you not motivated to generate better sales? Why is it you find being in a market with other schools so overwhelming?
    Goviots will say the markets are making your school and teaching stronger. Their entire political ideology is based on this. if you remove league tables, you remove the market.
  7. Eureka!

    Eureka! Lead commenter

    This is essentially true. But if it wasn't exam results used, then some other numerical measure would be used. The politicians and adminstrators of today are embroiled in a philosophy of management that requires numerical results of some sort. How else could they "know" whether their management is "working"?

    Of course,the same management philosophy has been used by teachers on kids since time immemorial!
  8. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    No it hasn't!
    The management philosophy is a numerical 'name and shame' of schools and students with Failure being the default.
    When I first started teaching feedback, tailored to the child, might be along the lines of "Great, just remember next time to ......." (possibly given verbally)

    Feedback now is tailored to the schools requirement/ target
    It has a number "Great, you've achieved your target of 4c. Now you need to get a 4b (so you're back to being a 'failure' again)
    This a perfect piece of work (oh no I can't say that because I've got to give you a target)
    You can't start Course X because you're unlikely (statistically) to improve the schools results placings.

    The same schools needs ethos drives the crazy and unmanageable, planning, marking and assessment' policies, curriculum changes etc

    EDIT : I know that some might want to replace schools needs with CEO/HT needs.
    cissy3 and snowyhead like this.
  9. MrMedia

    MrMedia Star commenter

    School is an abstract construct. The SLT set the ideology of the place.

    One interesting aside we are finding is some SLT don't want staff to share resources or best practice or help other schools. However, the teachers in those schools ideologically believe that improving the education of any children is a valid outcome of sharing resources and good practice.

    Even the TES ring fencing resources by making teachers (God forbid) pay for these resources goes against the ideological notion of these teachers.

    But the SLT exist in a market bubble in which the grades of their school against others and national targets are the profits and work whereas the teachers exist in a classroom bubble where the behaviour, learning, development and progress holistically are the profits and work. The two sides do not work to the same ends.
  10. Morninglover

    Morninglover Lead commenter

    Nothing new about this - about 20 years ago I met the teacher at the school next door who had one significant responsibility I did at a County meeting (we still had then then), we got on, and agreed to share experiences & resources for our (& our schools) mutual benefit.

    But on return, my messages to her went unanswered, and nothing happened. The next year I met her again at the County meeting, and she apologised, but said that her HT had told her not to work with me as our schools were rivals....
  11. drek

    drek Star commenter

    I've heard of trust school boards now using staff and students across their chain as guinea pigs to 'trial' out new strategies. I guess the imaginary successful data generated, can secure them government funding. The consultant in line for the funding, will ask some schools in their chain to try out 'new ideas'. Others won't be invited into the 'scheme' just yet. They then use their own comparative data analysis to 'evidence' the success of their 'strategy'
    Do we unknowingly contribute to this. Yes, through survey forms we fill free of charge for esteemed leaders. even Amazon gives free vouchers for star reviews about products we have not even tried yet :)
    Yes those surveys we are forced to fill out with the management 'spies' overseeing our efforts! To the point of telling us what 'they' would like to see on them.
  12. TCSC47

    TCSC47 Star commenter

    This is very much the situation for both.
  13. drek

    drek Star commenter

    Is the reason why schools are forcing teachers to do extra revision hours, partly because the classroom strategies they expect as evidence of outstanding lessons may not be working? Most teachers do revision classes as and when needed. But at my last outstanding schoo, the person who ran the most show and tell Insets, generally had to get their students in every Saturday, for the whole morning, not to make a difference to their grades, but to actually keep their grade. Teacher often have to call their students back for 'real' lessons. So they are given outstanding for showing pace, learning, differentiation, progress, etc etc. But why does evidence of actual teaching practice show the opposite?
    This was for the dumbed down curriculums.
    If they don't stop with the outstanding lessons soon every teacher will doing full Saturday's to make up for wasting time on nonsense in lessons!
  14. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    Every 'Outstanding' lesson I taught (there weren't many!) had to be retaught, often at the student's request because pace, differentiation, 'learning styles' just didn't meet their needs. It didn't make any difference to their exam grades though because I did all this stuff when I knew I would be observed. The rest of the lessons I did what worked which incidentally also gave the students an education rather than the 'dog training' which is so in vogue.

    But the other reason 'intervention' is now routine (so it isn't actually intervention then is it) is that 1/4 or more of so many lessons is wasted on, students not having equipment or being ready for lessons, not listening, waiting for the TA or teacher to give them the instructions /do the work for them individually . I would suggest the amount of time actually teaching/learning is about 30 mins in every hour.
    This behaviour by the way is sanctioned by certain groups i.e. 'you can't expect students to work in silence' you should have a supply of pens for them to borrow', 'you can't expect them to listen if the work isn't engaging' or my favourite, 'students can't concentrate for more than 13 minutes at a time without a 'break' etc etc.
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2015
    cissy3 and drek like this.
  15. rosievoice

    rosievoice Star commenter

    The poor dears! How painful it must be for them to play online games for hours and hours at home.
    cissy3 and drek like this.
  16. George_Randle

    George_Randle Occasional commenter

    I think Saturday opening is going to become increasingly common now in the state sector. After all, those wonderful private schools (which we must all ape) do it. I have indeed noticed that many intervention sessions are effective and worth the kids' time because they are outstandingly free of outstanding features.

    I once likened state schools to a huge version of the Milgram experiment. I should have edited that to: a version of the Milgram experiment where the current is switched on.
    drek likes this.
  17. Sisyphus_rolls_again

    Sisyphus_rolls_again Established commenter

    Well, they're going to have to do it in an exam..so it's a good job that someone has taken the bull by the horns and has decided to 'upskill' them.
    Anyone that disagrees must be an 'enemy of success'.
    cissy3 and drek like this.

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