I thought that working at a school that was striving to improve itself would be an exciting challenge but it has transpired into a nightmare and it looks like I might fail the year. The main issue is classroom management and a lack of support from my dept and the school. I seem to spend a large chunk of the lesson trying to settle them but it's usually ten to fifteen minutes into the lesson before they actually get their books out. When I gave some students detention for not working hard enough, they threatened to tell the headmistress that I never give them any work to do, which is nonsense. I have tried several tactics such as greeting them at the door to make sure they are reminded of the expectations, walking round the class room and not teaching from the front, not raising my voice, addressing of task behaviour individually, seating plans, intensively reviewing my lesson plans and there has been no improvement. I have received very little in the way of support from my head of department who is very nice but under tremendous pressure to turn around an ailing department. When I was appointed, I asked who would mentor me and she said that she would, adding 'god knows when I'll find the time!' In actual fact she hasn't found the time and since September we have had five half hour meetings. 2 1/2 hours has been the total of my mentoring time during the year. I have been given an insanely challenging class. They were partially responsible for a teacher's decision to leave the profession last year and are keen to remind me of this. Every teacher I have spoken to has said that they were traumatised by this class, including an advanced skills teacher who had sleepless nights over them. They will come in and get their lunch out, eat, chat, apply their make up, scream abuse at me if I ask them firmly to take their books out. My head of department tells me to give them detention, reports, phone calls home and meet with parents, all of which I have done to no avail. Meanwhile, I have had the parents of the quiet children complaining and we are still getting nowhere. Is it fair to say that giving an NQT a class with a history of severely disruptive behaviour is not in line with what they should be doing? I thought we had to be given classes that we had a reasonable chance of success with? She has removed one boy from the class and put him in hers now but only after he called me a f**ing cow and threatened to assault me. My Head of department is extremely popular with the kids so he feels like he has been rewarded. My HOD has now promised to arrange for me to observe lessons, shadow challenging students in lessons where they behave and have people observe me, but should this not have been done before instead of fobbing me off when I asked for help with 'just give them detention'?.She has never said anything positive about my performance and constantly criticises me yet she passed me on my first check with no serious concerns and claims that she is not thinking of failing me. I sympathise with her as I recognise the pressure she is under and the fact that she is not the person to help me as she is drowing herself. I am constantly in tears, both at school and at home and have become very depressed about it. I am strongly considering leaving the profession. She told me herself that if I can't manage the class it may perhaps be time for me to think if teaching is for me. If she believes that, shouldn't she be failing me on my NQT year? She also said that she had discussed with a senior teacher on what to do with my severely challenging class and said 'I've got to admit, I am at a loss at what to do. You have already received so much support.' I don't fully believe advising me to give detentions etc is support. When I asked her why I was given such a class she said that she felt I was developing a tendency to put blame on her department management for my errors. I'm not shifting the blame; clearly it is my lack of experience and not the departments that I can't handle the class. I told her I was considering finishing my NQT elsewhere and she said that she firmly believed I would have the same issues elsewhere. It's so demotivating. I am already dreading going back on Monday.