There is so little work available in supply now that I feel far too much is expected of supply teachers. Even last year, if you were reliable, turned up, were reasonably well organised, followed the cover work set by the absent teacher or head of department and disciplined to the best of your ability you would keep getting work most days. Now it seems you have to be a phenomenal cover teacher to get asked back. Still, a bit of a shame that being good is no longer enough and you have to completely burn yourself to be superior for something that is not even a permanent job with very little work available as we all know. The expectation of being phenomal at classroom management in such circumstances as general cover is very difficult unless you do not have a life outside of teaching and if you are not part of the regular teaching staff as students will play up to a teacher they do not know naturally, and sometimes you can invoke every strategy but it just won't work. I can understand why we are all so bitter. We were sold the fact that there is a shortage of teachers and there always will be and supply would always be a guarantee. I remember when I was a head of department in a permanent post some of the supply teachers were dreadful but kept getting asked back and just took register and dished out work left and did not attempt any behaviour control. THIS WAS ONLY 2 YEARS AGO. Unless you were utterly incompetent and unreliable for example, you did not turn up to class, turned up drunk etc you would get regular work as a supply teacher most days until possibly last year. Times have changed in a very short time and the expectations of supply teachers have risen dramatically in only the last year. Times have changed drastically and the expectations for outstanding supply teaches has only come about recently due to the phenomenal surplus of teachers and colossal downturn of supply in schools that they are only going to employ the supply equivalents of Robin WIlliams in dead poets society now. Shame that we are so pressurised as a society these days, and that being good is no longer good enough. Still I believe supply is finished and anyone who thinks otherwise is misguided. I have had information that most schools are trying not to hire any at all and if they do in an emergency they have to be outstanding practitioners making the job now almost as stressful and with too much expectations in the same way a permanent teacher is. Ridiculous. Opinions welcome.