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Struggling to keep my head above water on part-time pay.

Discussion in 'Personal' started by dfinberg, Oct 24, 2011.

  1. I had a tough time as a single parent with an ex who has always been allergic to putting his hand in his pocket,
    but things sorted themselves, out as I was lucky enough to have
    relatively cheap rented accommodation. When that came to an end, my life
    changed. Thankfully, my son went off to university at that stage but I
    have been struggling ever since.
    Due to excessive bullying by my
    line manager at the time, I chose to go part time in order to preserve
    my sanity. I had already had 5 months off work due to stress caused by
    this woman, and in order to be able to return to work, I elected to
    change from full-time to part-time, changing my line mangager and
    avoiding the courses she oversaw and taught on so that I could still be
    in work and remain sane. Note that she was never fully reprimanded, despite union
    intervention. Why are bullies allowed to get away with it?
    That aside, it happened to coincide with my change
    in accommodation due to the flat I had been living in being sold. This
    was in 2008. I am battling to afford to pay rent (I am now lodging) and
    have changed my job and location, still part-time, but with more contracted hours. I
    am struggling to find full-time teaching and am faced with a Christmas
    with no place for my son to stay, He is homeless during the university
    How does that make me feel?
    Hindsight is a wonderful thing, and had I known that this would be the outcome, I would have done a vocational qualification and been a legal PA, earning £42,000 pa, instead of working like a dog, earning pretend money. (I kid you not, my landlady is a legal PA and earns this...)
    What would you do in my situation? I am turning 52 and cannot afford to retrain.
  2. Ok, so you are teaching part-time and therefore earning a part-time wage. why not take on another part-time job to fill the gap? Lots of people have more than one job, so why not you too? Otherwise, you could pack in the teaching lark and simply take one, better paid (if you can find it ) full-time job that doesn't require extensive retraining. Where there's a will there's a way (one of my best friends made a small fortune as a Tupperware sales rep working only evenings, so you see, it CAN be done!) Good luck!
  3. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Get out of teaching and do something else full-time that pays more than your current salary and doesn't demand extra time after normal hours?

    That's not intended to be unsympathetic by the way - it's an option I have to consider if (at 52 myself) part-time Supply teaching work starts to dry up in the next few months.
  4. jazz2

    jazz2 New commenter

    Shops (and maybe other places) will be recruiting Christmas staff, so you might be lucky and get something temporary that fits in with your current hours. Not ideal, I know, but it's a place to look. It would also give you broader experience for applying for alternative positions.

  5. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Awful, of course! But is there no space for him to camp in your living room? Not ideal, but at least you could be together.Students are after all used to it.
    I have a friend who is struggling and may have to move into a caravan, and she is faced with a similar problem. I keep reminding her, her children are grown-up enough to understand the situation. Is there a relative or schoolfriend nearby who could provide the overnight accomodation? They'll be spending most of their time with you or their friends during the hols after all.
  6. I know what you mean. My wife left six months ago and I'm terrified of the future - Im 62 and have a £450ish teachers pension. I'm teaching outside the UK at the moment, but I return to a big empty house in January. I'm finding it harder and harder to deal with 'Challenging' kids. I don't think I'll find work - except for grudged supply, which still pays the same rate as ten years ago!
    If you lived any where near NE England I'd offer to share my house with you!

  7. Thanks for your reply. All my family live abroad. The house is not mine, so unfortunately my son cannot camp in the living room, which is an open plan lounge/diner/kitchen. I have a room in someone else's small flat.
    I have no money to buy or rent a caravan - even they cost a lot of money. I have put my son up in a B&B in the past, but it is too expensive over the Christmas period and I am overdrawn on my bank account. I'm on a 0.6 contract.
    It is only my son and I which is why I'm feeling so bad.
  8. I have been trying for some time now to either find a different full-time job, even out of teaching, or supplement my income, but to no avail yet. It's not for want of trying! I work some evenings as my college is residential. I am free on Thursdays and most of Fridays, so I could work about 10 hours extra, but I cannot find that elusive job!

  9. I'm trying - I've not been asked yet for interview. Perhaps I'm seen as too old to retrain in the workplace? I've had an interview for a teaching post, only to be told that I interviewed very well, have all the experience and qualifications but that the agency tutor got the job as she was already in place.
  10. You're all making some good suggestions, but unfortunately the college I work at runs its GCSE programme at the weekends (it's residential). My hours are 0.6 over some weekdays and some weekends with some evening work too; quite anti-social.
    You are right that I need to find something else, but I haven't yet, and it's not for want of trying.
  11. littlemissraw

    littlemissraw Occasional commenter

    Just wanted to offer a hug. I've applied for an unbelievable amount of jobs this year, teaching & none and still don't have anything. I'm lucky to have a wonderful OH so I definitely can't complain. Have you looked at mystery shopping? Its not well paid at all but will give you a bit of extra cash and 'free' purchases/meals etc. Try Grass Roots or Retail Eyes? xx
  12. PM me if you like. I may be able to suggest something.
  13. oldsomeman

    oldsomeman Star commenter

    Firstly I apperciate that timmes are hard...for all of us and probabaly going to get worse.
    It here any way you can apply for tax credits to top up your wage
    have you sought work though the GPO which is taking on christmas workers
    Can you do home tutoring and so increase your take home pay
    Have you a skill which is transfreable.Ie if our a secratary can you put an advert in for using those skills.typing up thesis or documants,working for a small business, sorting out accounts for a builder...takes courage but you can ask the builders(assumng they speak english)
    Can you eplore a skill you might have,,,,,
    contact a housing charity as you might get help.....at least to settle in a rented small flat.......the homeless can get them so you to might.....
    Not saying they will work but its worth a try.
  14. Thanks!!!
  15. This sounds interesting. I'll follow it up. Good lateral thinking!
    I'm ineligible for benefits but am registered with Housing as a Key Worker. I have been since February 2011. There is no accommodation in my price range!
  16. Personal Tutors Ltd will find you tuition work if you teach the right subjects. It's £25 or thereabouts a hour. If you have ever taught GCSE or Alevel Justin Craig, the revision people, are worth approaching with 3 to 6 days intensive tutoring in residential centres, during Christmas, Easter and half-term. Pay not brilliant but you do end up with a decent lump sum.
    I think though that every one is rather missing the point, teachers even on 2/3 pay should be and should feel decently well off. If we are struggling (I am luckily not part-time but am in FE) then what of those who are on minimum wage, especially those on part-time minimum wage? The truth is that pay OR benefits do not support a decent lifestyle and there will be millions this winter making the choice between food and fuel.
    There is no sign that the coalition government gets this.
  17. Thanks for this. I'l google them now!
    You are right about this coalition government not getting it. Why should they when they consist of multi-millionaires and people who have never had to want for anything. It's beyond their experience or ability to empathise.
    Who voted them in?

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