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Positive advice please!!!

Discussion in 'Health and wellbeing' started by inamuddle, Feb 20, 2011.

  1. In a nutshell, I am a HoD in a large comp but currently off sick with stress. I had a lot going on at home, difficulties with children and OH illness and then my line manager (HT!) not being understanding or supportive. I have had 2 pregnancies fairly close together and KNOW that my HT would like me to leave as she thinks i can no longer give the 200% that i used to give now that i am (or was!) back.
    I have been off since before xmas and dont want to go back. I no longer want to work in such a stressful environment where staff wellbeing is at the bottom of the list of priorities. There are many reasons for my exit but i feel like i just want to leave teaching! I was very consciencious and gave ALL my spare time to my job. I now have a family that i want to spend time with and am HATING having to do homework each night!
    Question is how do i plan my exit? I am due to phone my union rep (although we dont have one at school - tells you a lot!) this week but am still receiving councelling provided by my county. I have made the decision to leave but want to do so on my terms and not feel pressured or bullied into doing so. HT is leaving this academic year and that did make me think for a miniscule of a second that i could return to work - but other problems remain!
    Any advice would be welcome (even if i have been brief on details!)
  2. You need to hand your notice in by 28th feb to leave at Easter. Otherwise you will have to leave in summer. Speak to your union! That's what they're there for! I'm with nasuwt and they were really good. You can also be signed off until your notice period is over. Your union will sort out reference negotiation for you too. I was terrified of handing my notice in, thought I'd be letting school/parents/kids down but school were really good. They said they understood my reasons and respected the decision. I dont know if I can face working all of my notice period as dreading going bk to school already but giving it my best shot! Seriously speak to your union though as they deal with this stuff all the time. If your school know the union are involved they are less likely to risk giving you grief/bad reference when you do leave. Remember about notice periods too as you'd have to hand in notice on first day bk.
    Hope this helps. Also teacher support network really good. Give them a call.
  3. I would ring your union ASAP as they may well tell you NOT to resign in order to leave as this leaves you at risk of not being given a reference. (heads do not have to provide one) There are other ways out that do not leave you with the weaker hand, so to speak.
  4. Thanks both of you. I had occ health yesterday and she was quite firm that i shouldnt be making any HUGE decisions yet as i am certainly no where near returning to work!
    I had made my mind up to leave and now i feel like it is holding over my head.
    We have no union rep in school so will be phoning my area rep this week for advice - thanks again
  5. My union etc also tried to persuade me not to hand my notice in whilst I was off sick. Strongly advised against it. Tried to get me to take longer off sick and try part time etc. It really confused me cos made me think I was not sane enough to make a decision. However, it was work that was making me sick. I knew that if I stayed teaching I would have more periods of being off and nothing would change. So I ignored my union and handed my notice in.

    This is just my experience but I feel sooooooo much better now I know I'm leaving teaching. Everyone I've spoken to who has left teaching has said how much better they feel now and how much happier they are. I don't have another job lined up but to be honest I already feel like a weight is lifted off my shoulders.

    I know exactly how you feel as I had my mind made up and after speaking to union etc they advised me not to leave and it really confused me and added to my stress.

    I'm sorry if this seems like a 'you must leave teaching' rant. It's not supposed to be. Do whatever is right for you. Only you know how you feel and whether leaving teaching is the right choice. Just to let you know that I'd been there and ignored my union (I know it was occ health for you) and I feel positive for the future knowing I've made the right choice for me.

    Sorry if I sound evangelical. Good luck with whatever choice you make x x x
  6. I would stay off sick of full pay as long as possible (coordinating this with the notice period and holidays) and then leave. After 6 years' experience of teaching in the UK I think this job here is only for people who had children very young so when they are in their early forties their kids have already left home and they have another 25 years when they have already "done" childrearing (and possibly have a partner similarly dedicated to some carreer) but they are still young and strong to throw themselves into the never-ending and never-lessening workload, stress, etc.

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