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Working in too many schools?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by katherinelily, Jan 30, 2011.

  1. Hi, I'd be interested in hearing about other people's experiences.
    When I qualifed as a teacher, in 2003, I began work at a school that just wasn't right for me, at all. I was teaching outside my subject specialism (which wasn't mentioned at interview) and had a terrible experience with behavioural problems, having been given some absolutely awful kids to deal with. I thought it looked bad to leave after one year so I stuck it out for two, although I was very unhappy, and in desperation left in spring 2005.
    I was lucky and got another job (I had also just bought a house at this time) however the commute proved to be practically unmanageable. It was over an hour there and back every day and as a teacher still on M3 at that point, I struggled financially with petrol and wear and tear on the car costs. I also found my classes hard. Although the behaviour problems weren't anything like as bad or extreme as my first school, because they had been so awful I hadn't really learned anything about classroom management or about proper "teaching" and I found I was struggling. Most staff in the school were kind and supportive and, looking back, I realise I should have asked for help from experienced members of my department but I felt at the time that I was doing the school and the pupils a disservice and so two years on, I handed my notice in.
    I found another post in a school much closer to home and in a good school at that and I was overjoyed when I got it - what was not made clear at any point in the advertisement or in the subsequent interview was that it was in fact a temporary post due to a permanent member of staff going on maternity leave and by the time this did emerge it was too late. I went for numerous interviews during the spring term of that year and I had no luck with any of them and finally secured a post with a TLR attached, as Key Stage 3 co-ordinator.
    Unfortunately, the school was destined for closure. After a year and one term working there I managed to secure another post, a small promotion, as second in department in a good school. I was over the moon.
    However, I am starting to wonder if I am cursed because now redundancies are looming, our intake is getting smaller and smaller and once again, the "c" word is starting to be muttered - while I don't think we will actually close, our intake is getting smaller and from a less desirable background. My different experiences have taught me that classroom management is not a very strong point of mine, however I am an effective and good teacher most of the time and am very good at many elements of the job. I'm wondering whether to actively look for other jobs to start in September, I will have been at the school one year and two terms then.
    My record is: two years; two years; one year; one year and one term and I am wondering if this makes me look unable to dedicate myself properly. Or is it a positive thing, that I have worked in different schools? I know many people who have been in the same post since qualifying and I wish I had.
    Welcome any thoughts.
     
  2. Hi, I'd be interested in hearing about other people's experiences.
    When I qualifed as a teacher, in 2003, I began work at a school that just wasn't right for me, at all. I was teaching outside my subject specialism (which wasn't mentioned at interview) and had a terrible experience with behavioural problems, having been given some absolutely awful kids to deal with. I thought it looked bad to leave after one year so I stuck it out for two, although I was very unhappy, and in desperation left in spring 2005.
    I was lucky and got another job (I had also just bought a house at this time) however the commute proved to be practically unmanageable. It was over an hour there and back every day and as a teacher still on M3 at that point, I struggled financially with petrol and wear and tear on the car costs. I also found my classes hard. Although the behaviour problems weren't anything like as bad or extreme as my first school, because they had been so awful I hadn't really learned anything about classroom management or about proper "teaching" and I found I was struggling. Most staff in the school were kind and supportive and, looking back, I realise I should have asked for help from experienced members of my department but I felt at the time that I was doing the school and the pupils a disservice and so two years on, I handed my notice in.
    I found another post in a school much closer to home and in a good school at that and I was overjoyed when I got it - what was not made clear at any point in the advertisement or in the subsequent interview was that it was in fact a temporary post due to a permanent member of staff going on maternity leave and by the time this did emerge it was too late. I went for numerous interviews during the spring term of that year and I had no luck with any of them and finally secured a post with a TLR attached, as Key Stage 3 co-ordinator.
    Unfortunately, the school was destined for closure. After a year and one term working there I managed to secure another post, a small promotion, as second in department in a good school. I was over the moon.
    However, I am starting to wonder if I am cursed because now redundancies are looming, our intake is getting smaller and smaller and once again, the "c" word is starting to be muttered - while I don't think we will actually close, our intake is getting smaller and from a less desirable background. My different experiences have taught me that classroom management is not a very strong point of mine, however I am an effective and good teacher most of the time and am very good at many elements of the job. I'm wondering whether to actively look for other jobs to start in September, I will have been at the school one year and two terms then.
    My record is: two years; two years; one year; one year and one term and I am wondering if this makes me look unable to dedicate myself properly. Or is it a positive thing, that I have worked in different schools? I know many people who have been in the same post since qualifying and I wish I had.
    Welcome any thoughts.
     
  3. You've worked in a range of schools in a range of different circumstances. I don't think an employer will look on that as a lack of dedication. You have also managed to secure promotion in that time, so employers clearly aren't too worried by it. Where you are at the moment is probably fine. I'd not worry until closure is confirmed: give yourself a bit more time where you are 3-4 years in the same place will show an ability to make changes (you have a TLR) and see them through. I'm suspicious of applicants who have management experience but are only in post for a couple of years: you can't see anything through.
     
  4. Thanks for your reply, Arthur. I will certainly take your advice and try to make some more positive changes before looking for a move, sideways or otherwise.
     
  5. Can't see anything wrong with so many moves since they've mostly been moves you're had to make (temporary post/school closure), rather than chosen.
     

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