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Thinking of Quitting

Discussion in 'New teachers' started by helen131, Feb 11, 2012.

  1. helen131

    helen131 New commenter

    I started my NQT year as a Maths Teacher in Septemeber and have hated every single second. After failing my first few observations I have been observed every week since before Christmas and I have only had 2 satisfactory and 2 borderline satisfactory so far. My main problem is behaviour management and I rarely feel like I am truly in charge of my classes, my students have no respect for me and I feel like I have no relationship with them at all.

    After half term I am having a meeting with the deputy head because all of the extra support I had is being removed and I need to be clear of their expectations of me. They have also suggested I ask my union rep to come in with me which sounds like I am going to be told I am still on course to fail my NQT year and we are going to come up with another action plan but basically there is no hope.

    The major problem I am having is that I have wanted to be a teacher forever and I feel like such a failure for quitting, but I honestly don't think I can pass because my behaviour management is so ****. I have been told that my lessons are good- AfL/ visuals/ questioning techniques etc. but it is being ruined by my lack of control. I have the potential to be a great teacher but I haven't enjoyed any of this year, I have no desire to continue, and I don't believe I can get sort out my problems- I also doubt I will find a school with well behaving kids where I could try to pass the final term if I wanted to change schools.

    I made the decision to quit and told my parents, but my dad thinks I'm giving up and its the wrong thing to do and we have had quite a few arguments about it. So now I'm thinking about keeping going, but I don't want to because I'm going to fail- its just to stop him being disappointed. I know no one can tell me what to do, but I just need some advice from someone impartial.
     
  2. helen131

    helen131 New commenter

    I started my NQT year as a Maths Teacher in Septemeber and have hated every single second. After failing my first few observations I have been observed every week since before Christmas and I have only had 2 satisfactory and 2 borderline satisfactory so far. My main problem is behaviour management and I rarely feel like I am truly in charge of my classes, my students have no respect for me and I feel like I have no relationship with them at all.

    After half term I am having a meeting with the deputy head because all of the extra support I had is being removed and I need to be clear of their expectations of me. They have also suggested I ask my union rep to come in with me which sounds like I am going to be told I am still on course to fail my NQT year and we are going to come up with another action plan but basically there is no hope.

    The major problem I am having is that I have wanted to be a teacher forever and I feel like such a failure for quitting, but I honestly don't think I can pass because my behaviour management is so ****. I have been told that my lessons are good- AfL/ visuals/ questioning techniques etc. but it is being ruined by my lack of control. I have the potential to be a great teacher but I haven't enjoyed any of this year, I have no desire to continue, and I don't believe I can get sort out my problems- I also doubt I will find a school with well behaving kids where I could try to pass the final term if I wanted to change schools.

    I made the decision to quit and told my parents, but my dad thinks I'm giving up and its the wrong thing to do and we have had quite a few arguments about it. So now I'm thinking about keeping going, but I don't want to because I'm going to fail- its just to stop him being disappointed. I know no one can tell me what to do, but I just need some advice from someone impartial.
     
  3. Captain Obvious

    Captain Obvious New commenter

    There's no way back from failing the NQT year, so if it's in your best interests to resign, do it - pride won't pay the bills later on.
    I was in a similar situation a few years back - behaviour management weaknesses and crashing towards a failed NQT year. I resigned and went elsewhere. I worked on my behaviour management weaknesses, and while I didn't become perfect (and I'm still not), I improved and eventually completed the final term of induction.
    Carrying on is likely to be career suicide, particularly if there are no signs of improvement. It's better to start afresh with a clean reputation.
     
  4. Hi there. I completely empathise with how you are feeling. I'm a primary nqt and have been told they doubt I will meet the standards blah blah blah. I've just handed in my notice and will be leaving at the end of the spring term.
    This was a very hard decision for me but at the end of the day I would rather quit now so that I still have the chance to return at a later date to complete my induction year. If I just carried on there's a slim chance I could pass or the almost certain chance of failing and if I fail I will never teach again.



    My advice to you is that quitting sooner will leave that door open for you to go back in the future, should you wish to. Carry on and fail and you will just be slamming that door in your own face and double bolting the lock!

    You can't be a failure by leaving with the option of going back.
     
  5. littlemissraw

    littlemissraw Occasional commenter

    If you know that you have problems that you're struggling to address then maybe securing early release is the best option.
    Your dad means well, and I can completely understand his concerns (I've not had full time work since resigning from my post in August 2010) the economic climate is dire and decisions should not be made lightly. However if you fail your NQT (and your appeal isn't solid) teaching is closed to you forever and you'd be out of work anyway.
    Talk to your union, make sure your making the right decision for you (everyone's situation is different, I wouldn't have done the same thing if I could go back)
    Huge hug! Its an awful thing to go through no matter where the problem lies. I hope things work out in the best possible way x
     
  6. PaulDG

    PaulDG Occasional commenter

    Your dad almost certainly does mean well, but unless he's been an NQT in the last 10 years or was once a junior doctor (or perhaps is a social worker), he simply has no understanding of the pressure NQTs can be under with poorly behaved classes.

    So, sadly, his well intentioned advice is almost certainly just adding to your stress.

    Also, sadly, I must suggest that you may not be being pessimistic enough about the meeting that's been lined up - if they're suggesting you bring the union rep, then that strongly suggests the decision has been made and you will be leaving that school pretty soon, like it or not.

    I suspect the best thing you can do now is to make sure you can leave on good terms and that the relevant induction panel has has the situation put to them in a way that paints you in the best light - so have a think about what you might want to say, and what you might want the school to say on the form that is sent to them.
     
  7. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I would suggest that some of the fault here lies with the school. NQTs often do struggle with behaviour, but the support should have been such that lessons have not been ruined continually. If you have had two satisfactory observations, then that suggests behaviour wasn't totally disastrous.
    I imagine you could easily do this. There are plenty of schools where behaviour is good and support for NQTs is also good.

    Talk with your union rep before the meeting and plan what you want to say. As someone else posted it sounds like the decision has been made for you, but it does appear to be the best decision. You and your union rep simply need to ensure that any reference does mention all the good parts of your teaching.

    Resigning now, doing supply for the summer to see all the good schools around you and practise your BM in lessons where you don't have to worry about the planning and bits as well will help your confidence enormously. Then keep an eye out for posts in fab schools, and get applying.

    You aren't a failure, you are just in the wrong school.
     
  8. cshanks

    cshanks New commenter

    I was in this situation 2 years ago. There wasn't a significant weakness thatmy school at the time could tell me but my first 2 assessment points were deemed to be not meeting the standards. I decided to leave at the eastr. It was a really difficult point in my life and I felt like a failure and everything that you have talked about here. I went and did supply for a year and started looking for a position to finish my final term. I struggled to get a job as I found out my school were giving me a poor reference. I found another source to get my reference from and secured a year maternity post last June. I have been at the school since September, at christmas I passed my induction year, and now looks like I will have a perm position from September. I think the best thing you can do is leave, maybe do some supply address your issues this way and get your confidence back. Then begin the search for a new job in a better place and frame of mind. Things can work out.
    Good luck
     
  9. helen131

    helen131 New commenter

    Thanks for all the advice, and I'm glad everyone is saying my decision to leave is a good one. None of my family are teachers so they are trying to be helpful but don't really understand what I'm going through.

    I've gone straight into teaching from uni so I've never had a job before and I don't really know what to do next, but supply sounds like a good idea, especially if it means I can get lots of school experience without it counting towards my induction year. I just need more time!
     
  10. My advice would be to do supply, whether secondary or primary and learn,learn ,learn about class control and BM. It's the best way to do it and your confidence will quickly come back. I know this from personal experience. Having had issues about class behaviour in my induction year I was recently asked into a difficult school to cover during an Ofsted, was observed and all good. There's so much to do in your induction year, take a break and then come back to it. One piece of rather bizarre advice, we got a puppy and suddenly all the behaviour stuff made sense. Worth a try!
    Good luck and best wishes
     
  11. Hi Helen,

    I am in exactly the same position as you - I also 'failed' my first term in December, and have been told that unless I manage to miraculously turn everything around after this half term break I am also going to fail this term.

    I am in secondary too, teaching MFL. I have also been told that my planning/ideas/marking/AfL etc. is good, but my behaviour management is letting me down big time. Was put on an 'action plan' at the start of this term, have been observed twice this half term and got unsatisfactory for both, although feedback from numerous 'drop-ins' by SLT has been more positive.

    I don't know what to do at all, I'm thinking perhaps it would be best to quit whilst I'm ahead (oh the irony) and leave at Easter, but don't have anything else to go to either.

    It's really upsetting as I know that I could be a great teacher, I was rated good-outstanding on my PGCE last year. To go from that to being graded inadequate again and again only 6 months later is so disheartening :-(

    Anyway, just thought I'd let you know you're not alone!!

    squirlywhirly
     
  12. It has made me feel better that I am not the only NQT in this position!
    I am a struggling NQT in a primary school- reception to be more specific.
    I am finding it really hard and they have only sprung it on me in the last half
    term that I am not doing as well as I should be. From reading the advice on here it
    seems the general consensus is to 'quit while you are ahead'.
    Obviously that is quite a big decision to make. As we enter this next half term I would like to see how things
    go as I am being observed by someone from the LA. I was wondering- if I were to leave. How much notice would I need
    to give? I think it is 6 weeks notice I need to give but if I only let them know in 3 weeks time, then that only leaves 3 weeks till Easter? Would I have to continue 3 weeks into the Summer term? Is this allowed?

    Any advice appreciated!
     
  13. GloriaSunshine

    GloriaSunshine New commenter

    Normal teacher contracts have three resignation points - end Dec, end Feb and end May. If you resign at the end of this month, you can leave at Easter. But don't think about leaving until you have negotiated an action plan with your mentor. Be clear about the support you would like and ensure that everything is recorded. Don't do anything without contacting your regional union rep for guidance and support. From what you say, your school is warning you that you need to improve. Next week, find out exactly what they want to see and how you will achieve it. Don't panic!
     
  14. Thank you to all of the above advice. I will try my best to work with the school to try and get the support needed. However it is difficult as I feel my mentor hasn't warmed to me since the beginning. I have contacted a union rep who is going to try and come into my school. I will see how this all goes but if it doesn't improve in the next month then I may need to hand in my notice and maybe try elsewhere to try and get my final term done?
    Ideally, even though I find it difficult at this school I would like to make it to July so I have completed my NQT and then take a break and go travelling.
    Will schools advise you not to go into the final term if they think you are unlikely to pass? I wouldn't like to think that I am improving and I might make it only to be told at the last minute that I haven't passed.

    This is hard as it seemed to be going OK last term.
     
  15. My school advised me to leave after my first term was a 'fail' and the first half term of spring wasn't making much progress so that I could try again in another school at a later date. For my sake and also the school's sake as they didn't want the children to be behind or anything.
     
  16. This thread definitely resonates with what I was going through 12 months ago. Having to leave what was a good/outstanding school did me the world of good though and supply teaching has helped to regain my confidence big time which took such a bashing last spring.

    It's not been plain sailing and i'm still yet to complete that final term but seeing other types of schools and getting praise for planning, questioning in the times when you are given longer in schools is brilliant.

    Depending on where you are in the country too and which agency works been fairly non stop since october half term.

    Chin up though :) you'll kick ass in the right schools im sure!
     

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