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Strongly thinking of quitting

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by lily0891, Jan 19, 2012.

  1. Hello,
    I've been wanting to quit the PGCE for a while now. I was never sure I wanted to become a teacher, but after three years being a teaching assistant, I thought it was the natural path to follow.
    I disliked it almost right away. Not because of the work load -although it does take your life away- but because of the role of the teacher itself. I don't enjoy it. I don't enjoy being in the classroom, despite receiving good comments from my mentor and from my tutor. I teach MFL and the stress of the job even makes me bored of languages. Each class is a psychological torture. I can't stand having to be a cop to gain the pupils' respect.
    I sent an email to my university tutor to tell her about my desire to quit the training. She came to observe me that week and encouraged me to stay. Everyone I know but two or three people actually encouraged me to stay. But what for? It just seems like people expect me to finish the course because they think I'm going to change my mind.
    Have anyone who didn't enjoy the teaching part ever changed their minds?
    I didn't go to school today because I feel so down about it all. I'm not really sure I ever want to go back.

     
  2. Hello,
    I've been wanting to quit the PGCE for a while now. I was never sure I wanted to become a teacher, but after three years being a teaching assistant, I thought it was the natural path to follow.
    I disliked it almost right away. Not because of the work load -although it does take your life away- but because of the role of the teacher itself. I don't enjoy it. I don't enjoy being in the classroom, despite receiving good comments from my mentor and from my tutor. I teach MFL and the stress of the job even makes me bored of languages. Each class is a psychological torture. I can't stand having to be a cop to gain the pupils' respect.
    I sent an email to my university tutor to tell her about my desire to quit the training. She came to observe me that week and encouraged me to stay. Everyone I know but two or three people actually encouraged me to stay. But what for? It just seems like people expect me to finish the course because they think I'm going to change my mind.
    Have anyone who didn't enjoy the teaching part ever changed their minds?
    I didn't go to school today because I feel so down about it all. I'm not really sure I ever want to go back.

     
  3. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Don't usually frequent this forum but it was a.'flagged post' by the TES.
    If you're getting good comments about your teaching, it is probably worth continuing, especially if you've already paid your fees. You may as well get your money's worth.
    How much longer does the course last? Think of it in terms of weeks. Having the qualification may well stand you in good stead in the future.
    What you may well end up doing is being a TA again, (so many NQTs and even experienced teachers are considering such roles, if you look on supply and Unemployed forums due to the lck of jobs), a role which you enjoy, but your training will give you so much more insight into the role and therefore better able to help the students.
    The thing is once you've gained your QTS it's there, should you later decide teaching is what you want to do.
     
  4. Hi Lily,
    I think it would be a good idea to finish the qualification, even if you don't go into teaching afterwards. Explaining a quit qualification -or the gap on your cv- is quite tough. I speak from experience! About 2 1/2 years ago I started a Ph.D at a well regarded place, but I hated it. I battled on but in the end quit 9 months in. The thing with a Ph.D though is that it takes minimum three years, and very frequently much more- I have friends who started back in 2007 (and another who maybe started 2005 or 2006) who haven't finished yet. And that's a very long time to be (relatively, or very) poor, and depressed, doing something you think's going nowhere. But every time I go for a job interview I get asked about why I quit, and I have to explain, and have to make up for it by stressing my other qualities and skills. It's not the end of the world that I left, but it's not a positive on my cv.
    Think about it though: if your course has similar dates to mine, then there's just 4 months left until the end of school placements, with time off for university and holidays included in that too. That's not much at all- when you break it down, it's just a matter of weeks left at school. And at the end, if you wish, you need never set foot in a school again. There are other education roles out there (for example, my friend was an education officer at a museum and got to dress up like a roman warrior sometimes, which she loved) where a PGCE will be an advantage. And it will always leave a door open for you to return to teaching at a future point if you wish.
     
  5. Hi there
    I feel the same as you. I am getting good observations and positive feedback but am being totally squashed by the workload, and I miss my family whom I never seem to see any more. I have suggested quitting to friends and family but keep being talked out of it.
    I am taking one day at a time and continuing with it because a) I don't want to throw away all my hard work and waste my fees and b) because I wouldn't mind a TA job in the future.
    It is hard though. I guess if you are at the point that you're not going to school then maybe that crunch point has come. I know that for me the day that I don't go in is the day I know it's time to call it a day.
     
  6. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    This was Thursday, I'm assuming you didn't make it in on Friday either?

    I think you should ring in sick to school on Monday and then ring university and go and speak to them face to face. Tell them exactly how you feel and why. If you really don't enjoy 'teaching' then being a teacher isn't for you. But there are schools where you don't have to be a 'cop'. Private schools and high achieving schools tend to be more about teaching than behaviour. If there is a chance you would enjoy teaching there, then don't give up. It could just be that your placement school isn't the right sort of school for you.

    However, I disagree with the posters above who say keep going. If it makes you unhappy and you know it isn't for you then stop. It is a long time, with an awful lot of work, until July and if you really don't want to be a teacher then there is no earthly point carrying on.

    I really do feel for you, your unhappiness comes through in bucket loads. Best of luck and happiness whatever you decide.
     
  7. Dear all,
    First I wanted to thank you for taking time to answer to my depressive post from Thursday night. It was not a very good day to go through and I wrote like you cry, when everything overwhelms you and you see no end to the tunel.
    I finally did go back on Friday morning. I have one particular tough class on that day and I thought that if I didn't see them one time, then I wouldn't ever want to see them again. It is now Monday and I'm at school too. As one of you advised, I decided to take it one day at a time. It is hard but I feel so much pressure to go on. I'm also scared about not getting any job if I stopped in the middle of the training. I know it sounds a bit silly but I've kind of been brainwashed into thinking so.
    People do tell me I may enjoy my second placement more and that's now what I'm waiting for. I have two more weeks in that first placement. It doesn't sound long but time seems stuck when you're struggling doing something.
    It was really good to read your encouragement and to know I'm not alone in that mess. I'll keep posting regularly to let you know how everything goes. Are you all working in Education?
    Good luck to you all and thanks again.
     
  8. Notwithstanding

    Notwithstanding New commenter

    Well done for keeping going!
    I am a person on a PGCE that is choosing to leave it (my thread is 'strong feeling of not wanting to be a teacher'). I don't have what it takes, and have made myself quite ill in the process. This is good to noone in school, least of children and maybe I should be kinder to myself.
    One of the problems distinguishing me from fellow coursemates, is that, as hard as it is, they are able to still get done what needs doing (and are enjoying it). Many of them have a difficult home situation and children to look after. I don't, and still struggle with getting work done. It makes me question my future as a teacher and possibly having a family of my own. Again, even if it's just a timing thing (there are current family issues), now isn't the right time for me. I am seeking therapy/counselling now, as it's the only way I will move beyond this, but not while on the pgce.
    So if you have been able to 'get it done' so far, and as painful as it might be, you know that you will still 'get it done', then there is every reason to stick it out, but just don't allow yourself to get ill, mentally.
    Everyone is different, and thank goodness we are.
     
  9. If completing the course is causing stress and health issues then you may need to leave, but gaining the qualification can be a useful addition to your CV for a range of jobs (not just in teaching - e.g. an education officer in a museum, a trainer in a company etc.)
    I would advise that you talk to your tutor and that you talk to any student adviser your provider has so that any decision you make is the right one for you.
    James
     
  10. I would stick it out. If you can pass the observations just do it. The qualification is well worth having. Take care
     
  11. Lilly, really hope things work out for you. I am currently in the middle of a GTP year, finding it incredibly hard to stick with it. Have always had jobs where you leave at the end of the day and then have a home life.
    Of course I knew the workload but what is extremely depressing is to witness how teachers 10 years in the job still work just as much. It is almost a badge of honour to be last out of the car park and that is just not me. I have a young family, and so can't just quit financially, but I know I will not be spending my entire life teaching and desperately would like to avoid the NQT year too.
    The amount of self-reflection alone is enough to cripple you. I have never seen a job so insecure. Everyone, from the trainee to the head has this constant desire to improve, to change, and while that is of course admirable, it necessitates a level of constant enthusiasm that I just don't want or need.
    Can anyone offer any advice on specific examples or jobs that can be looked at with a teaching qualification?
    People have mentioned museums, which I personally would love, but how would I make this transition, and when?
    For example, if I found a job at the end of this year, would it be wise to go for it, leaving before my NQT year?
    Other people also mentioned teaching in private schools. Do they generally consider teachers without their NQT year, and is it very much a closed world? Any time I have asked anyone at Uni about the private sector they kind of back away slowly in horror.
    Sorry for so many questions- good luck everyone and hope somebody out there can help.
    Paul
     
  12. F1sydney

    F1sydney New commenter

    I too had very strong feelings of quitting the PGCE on many many occasions. I somehow stuck with it and passed in Dec 2011. I am now looking for work and recently applied for a TA job; basically my old job and school (I had a letter to say I didn't meet the criteria). I have also recently applied for a pastoral role, which I would love. My problem is I am worried schools will think I am applying for this type of job as second best and at the sniff of a teaching job I will be gone. This is not the case though, but how do I get this across to even get an interview when my qualifications on the application forms show a PGCE?
     
  13. Georgia99

    Georgia99 New commenter

    I had feelings during my PGCE that I didn't want to be a teacher but am glad I saw it through to the end. As a NQT I am currently considering leaving teaching as I am not sure the stress is for me but the PGCE is opening lots of doors for me in other areas and I am really am glad to have seen it through.
    I do wish to stay in a training type role or adult education though and therefore the PGCE helps me with this. You might not want to be in the education or training sector at all.
    Just to reply to F1sydney, before I gained my current teaching post I got a job outside teaching and they knew I had the PGCE but they didn't question whether I would be off when I had a teaching job. You could always not state that you have the PGCE on your application form for TA roles?
     

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