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resigning positions of responsibility

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by TrulyAsia, Mar 18, 2011.

  1. I'm currently Deputy Head in an international school in Asia and have been for a few years now. Despite the odd days when I feel like I've been promoted to my level of incompetence, I do a pretty good job - I'm approachable, flexible, supportive, reasonably organised - and the the general noises from above suggest the same; headships have been talked about. However, although I enjoy some aspects (weirdly enough: timetabling being my favourite), some drive me up the wall. Namely, the fact that I seem to spend a lot of time 'putting out small fires' (like people forgetting to order whiteboard markers and needing a box right now), and not concentrating on my own full-time teaching load, and then getting grief from the same people I seem to have helped out of a hole. One person in particular seems to enjoy ignoring most of what I say (and when they leave, as they have done in the past, someone else seems to fill the void), To cut a long story mid-length, I've had a thought in my head for some time of resigning my positions of responsibility to go back to just being a class teacher, However, I like the school - my own kids are students and my wife works here too - and I don't want to change schools. Has anyone out there a similar experience - stepping down a couple of notches to be simply a class teacher in the same school - and how did the management and staff take it? Were there problems you didn't anticipate?
  2. Karvol

    Karvol Occasional commenter

    Hmm. I am not a Deputy Head, so what my thoughts on the matter are might be a pile of crud, so do bear that in mind.
    A couple of things do have me puzzled. Putting out "small fires" shouldn't really be your job. Shouldn't the HoDs be the ones putting out these fires. My view on the subject is that if a Deputy Head is needed to put out a fire, then the fire better be a bl**dy big one.
    As for people ignoring what you say, try looking into why. Is what you say unreasonable or not practical in any way? If it is then change what you say. If what you say is perfectly reasonable ( in the opinion of others as well as yourself ) then change the person who is not listening.
    In any school you will have people who do not listen, who do what they want and some who are shirkers. It is part of school life. How you deal with them and to what extent you deal with them defines what sort of school you are. At the end of the day, the buck stops with the Head. If he or she is unwilling to do anything about it then you need to ask yourself if there is really any point in losing sleep over it. Either that or move to a school more in tune with your way of thinking.
    Just my opinion and, as I said, it might be complete rubbish!

  3. Thanks for a quick response! The "small fires" things is because we're a small primary / middle school -we've no HoDs; there's nothing between me and a couple of dozen teachers, TAs and individual specialists. I do sound a bit whingey because I'm feeling a big whingey - my wife pointed out that the box of markers were for her. The rest of what you wrote has me thinking - thanks!

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