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Lost OTT needs advice

Discussion in 'Overseas trained teachers' started by sarahprice87, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. Your first year out is always hard!!! I am also trained in Australia although I did teach back home before I came overseas. Could you possibly just do day to day supply work? UK schools are very different to Australian (well I am primary trained but they have very different expectations so also keep that in mind)
    I would see how the first week goes, I know it sounds hard but sometimes you just need to get started. I know the current school I am at is very disorganised and at the beginning I didn't even want to start because I had no idea what I was doing but I now love the school the staff are amazing and I get a lot of support from everyone. Could you talk to your agency to see if the school you are at now could get someone to support you? Do you have friends in the UK that you could get to help you or even just let you chat and vent away. I know that sometimes that helps me to put things in perspective.

    Sorry that I can't help anymore, but good luck, remember that they thought you were the best person for the job :)
  2. Of all the places for a new teacher to come, I think you have made a very big mistake in coming to England. It will not get better in England soon. You are being given the worst classes because no British teacher will take them. They have absolutely no concern for you or your well being - you are being exploited. They will continue to do this until you leave and then they will find someone else. This has no bearing on your ability as a teacher or person so do not take it personally. You are not the first person that this has happened to - it has happened to thousands and thousands of overseas trained teachers. The education system here is broken and they used you for a plaster.
    If they need you back home - then do the right thing and take care of your family. The experience you get in England has everything to do with personal stamina and grit than teaching ability. If you want to test your stamina and courage, do a rope course.
  3. Kiwi Jo

    Kiwi Jo New commenter

    Hey, I feel for you. You've just had a hard first three months and are worried about your upcoming position but it could be OK, give it a go. I was still relatively inexperienced when I got to the UK to teach and in many ways it was a baptism of fire but it also strengthened my classroom management skills. The ideal scenario is always to get onto a good induction programme in your own country but that's easier said than done too sometimes. True the NZ/Aus style compared to the UK is different but you will still gain a lot to take back to Australia when you decide to go. Remember, if the school you are about to go to makes you miserable after a few weeks then you can leave - never take second best just because you think you should. Furthermore if you really think you should be with family in Australia then put them first but also you are adjusting to life in another country at the moment so always need to give it some time.
  4. 'I'm with an agency and the contract was agreed upon as a day by day
    basis). However after speaking with my agency today, they've suggested
    that I do the first week to at least get money in the bank, which
    morally doesn't sit well with me at all.'

    The agency is merely squeezing the last bit out of you before you escape. They want to get the money from the CRB back and for the expense of vetting you. They set you up for failure and they would like to recoup their investment. I wouldn't worry too much about morality here.
    ARE YOU IN A UNION? IF not JOIN one immediately! You are in a dangerous position!

  5. Thanks for your honest replies, I really appreciate them! After spending the day looking over the generic lessons I had planned so far, I realised that they just weren't up to scratch. Without the class lists or a finalised timetable at least, there's no way I could be significantly prepared for the first week. And as they say, first impressions are everything. Also, to be truly honest, these holidays have only been made bearable by contact with my family. Because every time I went to prepare, I would feel extremely stressed and anxious both emotionally and physically.
    Reading your replies has cemented what I have now realised would be best, I'm going to email my agency and give my consultant a call tomorrow to say I cannot do the contract. I really feel that if I do the contract I will only become more stressed and anxious, which may drive me away from teaching for good.
    So I think I will backpedal to day to day supply for the moment, even though this time of the school year doesn't bode well for that type of work (or so I'm told by the agency). I've considered organising a trip back home for a visit. Although I worry I'll not want to come back if I do that.
    And hollyleaf, your comments about OTTs being used because British won't or can't be found to fill positions ring true. Mainly because this was one of the reasons why I (along with another English teacher who is Canadian) wasn't asked to continueat my last school, because they had found two British teachers to take our place. There have also been other teachers, both British and foreign, who've said the same thing.

  6. Kiwi Jo

    Kiwi Jo New commenter

    I think you've read the situation well. I've had interviews recently with schools that are being closely scrutinised by local authorities and expect the world of you in interview (if you take this job you will have to bring these children up to standard etc etc, be expected to be critisised by the inspectors - oh will I just?). I always leave these schools knowing full well why they are in trouble - because they are run by Noddies. The type of staff who can't even give you a timetable or class information! You will get plenty of day to day supply. The agencies only care about their income, believe me we have all seen it.
  7. Good luck with going back to day to day work. I'm sure you will be fine! You must feel such a relief now that you have decided something.
    I have been away from home for over 16months now and everynow and then I still miss my family but I keep saying to myself that I am having an adventure here and I will make the best of it!
  8. Join a union.
  9. Thanks Kiwi Jo, I had been told that the contract I left had not seen a permanent teacher for 2 terms, and was below standard. I was also asked to assess a teacher after observing his class on my induction day at the school by the HOD. Even despite my shot confidence in my skills, that made me wary of the school.
    And you're right sarahprice87, I do feel much better now that I've made a decision. Although after the school year is over, I'm not sure that continuing as a teacher here in England - regardless of it being day to day or otherwise - is going to be helpful to my confidence as a beginning teacher. I've thought of going back to Australia later in the year get on the supply lists and hopefully regain my confidence there.
    I'm with NASUWT hollyleaf, I signed with them shortly after starting at my last contract. But in honesty, I'm not sure what they could do about what has happened recently. If anything, despite believing I did the right thing by myself, I still feel guilty about leaving the school at such a time.
  10. When people are in a strange system trying to deal with the most difficult students and are being exploited by dishonest people it is a good thing to have a union. Call them and tell them your story - just for their information.
    Your story is not uncommon but unfortunately, it is a story that doesn't get told because people have misplaced guilt feelings. You HAVE learned a lot about human nature and how hard it is to cope in a broken system. Never work anywhere that has razor wire around the doors!
    You feel in your heart what the right thing is to do, trust it and act on it. Another big lesson.

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