1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Very stressed NQT

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by stressed-ict, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. I'm struggling to decide what to do and hope to get some advice. I have got 2 terms with 'may not meet standards' under my belt now which is really disappointing and have been told that in another school I would probably have been fine, I'm in very challenging school. I absolutely hate it there and am desperately trying to get through it but honestly don't know if I cando another 7 weeks feeling exhausted, crying every day and absolutely dreading going in.
    The problem is that I can't afford to be without a job and although I know I could probably do supply, my confidence is now so low that I'm not sure I'd be any good at that either. All my PGCE training was absolutely fine, no causes for concern at all, and excellent feedback on my observations and everything I did, so it's come as a big shock for me. The other thing that is worrying me is that I have a history of depression and I recognise the symptoms are coming back, but I'm also worried that if I go to my GP I've then got it back on my record again which won't look good when looking for another job.
    I don't know what to do, can't sleep, even though school's now over for 2 weeks, and can't stop thinking about it, and totally dreading going back. I'm not at all afraid of hard work, and put in the hours and do everything that's asked, it's just that I've lost motivation and enthusiasm and don't feel part of my dept or the school really and don't feel like I'm likely to really do what the school's expecting from me.
    I trained relatively late on in life because it's something I'd wanted to do for a long, long time, and now it feels like I've made the biggest mistake of my life, and done nothing but cause worry and stress for myself and my family. Not sure it's really worth it now, but finding it difficult to face the fact that maybe I made the wrong decision, and hate the thought of going back into industry.
    Has anyone else been in this situation, I just feel like a total failure. Should I just resign even though I don't know if I've got the confidence to get another job right now?
  2. GloriaSunshine

    GloriaSunshine New commenter

    You only have to read new posts on this board for a couple of days to realise how common your situation is, I know it's not politically correct to say this, but I really think teaching is not for the faint hearted and a history of mental health issues stacks the odds against you. Because teaching is relentless, as soon as you falter, it's a mammoth task to get back on track. I think your problem now is your lack of motivation rather than teaching. I've just read another thread where the advice was to toughen up and get through it but, of course, if you are experiencing symptoms of depression, that's a big ask. The usual advice applies. Rest over Easter and have some fun. Eat well and see friends a d family. Get marking and planning up to date. Ensure you know what you need to do to meet standards and plan strategies. Get through the next half term and you'll be fine. Exam classes will go and you'll have time to plan for next year. Consider every vacancy in your subject. A new job for September could be the biggest motivator of all.
  3. Hi,

    Sorry you are having such a hard time. I have been in a very similar situation to you but have only done my first term. I start a new job after Easter which really kept me going.

    Think about what you have achieved, 2 terms already and only one more to go.

    The advice above is excellent and I have been lucky enough to receive it several times!

    Is there anyone you can talk to at the school and get support from? If you want to pm me to let off steam go for it.

    You are nearly there and challenging schools/classes are very good training - if you can stick it out.

    I hope you feel better soon,

  4. First of all, what kind of action plan is your NQT mentor putting into place. As an experienced NQT mentor, I would hate it if an NQT were to fail. I know that we can't spoon feed, write your lesson plans for you, but we are there to support and guide you.
    I am mentoring an NQT at the moment. We have identified standards to focus on from her training and wrote an action plan based around these. I observe her every 6 weeks (or another member of staff - she has had an observation from the NQT liaison person and one from the HT). We then sit down and I give her detailed feedback, highlighting key strengths and also 1 or 2 points for development. We then review the action plan and say what we are going to do next. Our next steps have involved paired observations of other teachers teaching (this was great as I could point out to her what they were doing well that she needed to work on - she got lots of really good strategies from this), brainstorm idea sessions, observations of other teachers on her own, and then me observing her again focusing only on these points for development.
    Look at the standards that have been identified as areas for development and go to your NQT mentor to ask for advice on strategies to get them up to scratch. If this doesn't work, go to the headteacher and say you are struggling and feeling unsupported. If that doesn't work, go to the local authority and say the same. Don't fail your NQT year. You've put so much hard work into your training and that would all go to waste.
    My last piece of advice to you would be to ensure you are a member of a union. They are great sounding boards when you are struggling with issues. Don't be afraid to give them a ring.
    Finally, try and use the Easter break to organise your thoughts. Write your own action plan. What is the issue / what will you do to address this? / who will support you? / etc. Action planning is such a useful thing to do. It really does help to focus you and put you back on the right track.
    Good luck, I'd love to know how you get on.
  5. I've just thought - if you had good placements during your training, why don't you drop one of your teacher-tutors an email or text? They'd be much better placed to offer more personalised advice.
  6. Thank you for your advice, I'll let you know how I get on. I am gradually calming down after the stress of the last few weeks so can think a bit more clearly now and will put into practice the advice I've been given.
  7. Eureka!

    Eureka! Lead commenter

    Could I ask what sort of things you hate about being there?
  8. PaulDG

    PaulDG Occasional commenter

    As the OP may not have time to answer, Eureka!, what makes "challenging schools" "challenging" is the behaviour of the kids - and, most significantly the management response to it

    School is very different to when you went there (as is obvious from many of the remarks you make on "Opinion", where it is clear you are arguing against a style of education that no longer exists) - when half a dozen kids in any (and in a challenging school it is likely to be all) class decides they will not confirm, the teacher has no effective sanctions that can enforce conformity and neither do they have your preferred option of simply allowing the child to do something else; something the child would prefer to do instead.

    The behaviour load is not with the child, but with the teacher. And, in a truly "challenging school" it is highly likely that the school's management will be unequivocal in the view that the teacher is at fault all the time. That the reason six or more kids in every lesson disrupt any possibility of progress is because the teacher has "not built a relationship with those learners",

    Eureak!, you haven't been in a classroom for decades - and the behaviour you saw when you were at school was nothing like that seen in today's schools. I know you believe the system should be changed, but the OP does not have the freedom to do that.
  9. Eureka!

    Eureka! Lead commenter

    Of course I know what sort of behaviour goes on in "difficult" schools, Paul. I'm not challenging that fact.
    In fact I'm not challenging anything or anyone. Certainly not the OP to whom I only offer my very best wishes.

Share This Page