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Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by moggycat, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. moggycat

    moggycat New commenter

    It's how I feel. I can't do the job but not only that, maybe I've always been a rubbish teacher. (Work in primary) I'm not looking for pity or reassurance because none of you know me and for all you know, I could be ****! So how do I know if I'm any good at all? My workplace is awful and I fear the threat of a support plan. Sorry for the moan, bad grammar andlack of paragraphs etc(!) I feel blue!
  2. eleanorms

    eleanorms Occasional commenter

    No, we don't know you. But I know you're not worthless.
    Most of us are rubbish at times. Wednesday afternoon at 2:45?.Most SLT are rubbish at times as well. That's the nature of the job.
    It's hard to be a bad teacher for a long time, though, without someone suggesting you stop being one. Presumably you've completed performance management cycles, so you must have passed muster there.
    If you are really unhappy, think about your options. Go part time? Retrain? Just go and get a job in a garden centre. It all depends on your personal and financial situation. This is just a job. You go in, teach lessons, mark books, take the pay cheques. Your class are not your children, your management is not your family. No job should ruin your life
  3. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Most of us have our moments of doubt, especially after a bad day or a negative comment or two. Is there anyone in your school who you feel might be supportive? Maybe another rank-and-file colleague, or a TA?
    If there's nobody, or if you're feeling very blue in the middle of the night, lots of people have said the Education Support Partnership helpline is very helpful - see sticky thread near the top of Workplace Dilemmas.

    I spent a while in a tough school which wasn't best match for my skills. I learned a lot, but it really knocked my confidence for a fair while - I recognise your feeling of "maybe I've always been rubbish". In my next school (after a gap out of the state sector), I realised I was still a good teacher - not outstanding, but good enough in the right setting. But it's so easy to forget/doubt that when you're struggling...
  4. HolyMahogany

    HolyMahogany Senior commenter

    You were last seen on this thread very early this morning so I am assuming that you are loosing a lot of sleep and suffering from some degree of stress and anxiety.
    Please see your GP ASAP. Stress and loss of sleep will be having a serious effect on you, it effects your judgement and ability to function.
    You are not worthless, and the people who know and love you will want to do all they can to help and support you, speak to your GP and seek the help of family and friends.
    You will get past this point,

    LINGUIST2 New commenter

    Sometimes I am feeling the same especially in the last few weeks( in secondary). Some of my classes are so difficult with behaviour issues. but others are fine. I am a single subject teacher and in a culture where if you ask for help it's seen as your fault. You are not alone.
  6. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Do the kids run riot?
    Do they never shut up?
    Can any of them do a bit of reading?
    Maybe add up some numbers?
    Occasionally say please and thank-you?
    Paint a bit?

    You're not rubbish.

    Are they all going to go on to score maximum marks in KS2 SATs? Nah. But there are 30 of them and they go home to rubbish meals and squabbles and divorces and job losses and naughty siblings.

    You're not rubbish but you're just working with bosses who are pretty .... misguided in what they think is achievable.
  7. moggycat

    moggycat New commenter

    Thank you all. Appreciate your replies. X
  8. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Been there.
    Schools are not set up to seem supportive all people who work there. The nature of the beast is relentless work (especially at the start of the school year) and a bigger chance of being reminded that you forgot the assessments last Wednesday than being praised because you got them sorted.
    If the workplace is awful, it's them, not you.
    Find a 3.30 tea buddy with whom you can wind down when it's not meeting day.
    Maybe polish the CV, look to see what's out there.
    Good luck
    pepper5, steely1, agathamorse and 4 others like this.
  9. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    You are not worthless, whatever criticism you might get from SLT. If they are unsupportive, they don’t deserve you and you deserve a better school.
  10. Catgirl1964

    Catgirl1964 Occasional commenter

    When I was a TA in a toxic academy school, no matter what I did it was never good enough. I had worked in several schools before this so knew I was not worthless. I ended up taking the view that I was better than this position and needed to find a school which was a better fit for my skills and abilities. I survived four and a half months and then managed to get out.
    Sometimes it is a good idea to reevaluate whether the school is right for you as they can morph out of all recognition. It becomes time to move on, reminding yourself of your past successes, of which I am sure there are many.
  11. moggycat

    moggycat New commenter

    pepper5 likes this.
  12. steely1

    steely1 Occasional commenter

    You're not worthless but it's symptomatic of the state of the teaching profession as a whole that it can make teachers feel this way and where nothing is ever good enough and teachers can never be left to do their job because there's always the next fad or initiative to implement (certainly at the school I'm at).

    I don't know the ins and outs of what you're going through but try and stay strong.
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
  13. GirlGremlin

    GirlGremlin Occasional commenter

    It's ridiculous that a JOB can make so many of us feel this way.

    Can I just say before this that I absolutely DO NOT think you are bad at your job.... But! Think about the absolute worst case scenario...

    When I was in Year 5 at school, my teacher had a break down. This was in September. We had after that a full year of supply teachers who generally lasted a week or less, as our class (inner city, deprived area) became rowdier and rowdier, spurred on by chasing all these teachers away. We did nothing. Absolutely NOTHING. For the entire year. Most teachers tried and gave up. Some let us ransack the classroom. Some put videos on. But very, very little constructive work was done. And do you know what? The very vast majority of us in that class turned out fine. The world kept spinning. No one was hurt. I can bet that a damn sight more goes on in your classroom, and ultimately none of us have been negatively affected in the long term by this year of awful teaching.

    Also, in secondary school. I had a maths teacher in year 10 and year 11 who was a lovely man. But could speak very little english, and when flustered made mistakes. I have no doubt that he was an absolute genius and very clever, but he was weak. Most lessons descended into utter chaos as he was picked on. Again, very little work was done. But do you know what? I worked hard and still ended up with an A*. The class did fine. Ultimately again, this worst case scenario (which I am sure you are so much better than) has had absolutely no lasting impact or damage on myself or any of my peers.

    Please, please do not let people make you feel worthless. Get some perspective on the situation. People who don't work in education are usually good for this. If you get the kids through the day, with most of the work completed by most of the kids, and no injuries, it has been a good day. It will never be perfect, and it shouldn't be.
  14. studentfairy

    studentfairy New commenter

    Thank you so much for writing this post.
  15. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    One school I used to go home of an afternoon and think they'd learned nothing and behaved like total little sh*tz.

    But I was proud of myself nonetheless because, if I hadn't been there to babymind them, they'd have terrorised the estate. I did that community a service for 6 hours a day and 5 days a week. That was worth a lot to the old dears who lived there and had to put up with them.
  16. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    You are absolutely NOT rubbish. I am so sorry that you have reached the point where you feel this even somewhat resistant to help. Well I am sorry but WE will help you right here on WPD. I have been there several times so I really do know what you mean. I have seen close colleagues there. We sought help from fellow colleagues and medical professio als it was life changing for several of us. Some retrained some returned to education. It might seem the end of the road and I am sure you feel terrible but from here on things WILL get better. This is not heresay but a recognised path in Psychiatry. Please speak to your GP for a diagnosis. You sound clinically depressed and if not of low mood. You might also want advice from your union.
    Whatever you decide you most certainly have the TES gang right here on WPD who really DO CARE... an amazingly helpful altruistic bunch.


    For you

    Curae xxx
    jlishman2158, phlogiston and moggycat like this.
  17. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    Sending my love to all you lovely TESSERS that never fail to come together to help fellow collegues right here on WPD. You are just amazing
    Bless you all
    kega123, steely1, drek and 2 others like this.
  18. drek

    drek Star commenter

    Agree with all the above.
    You are good simply because you are someone who cares that they might not be good enough. That is part of being a human. Conscious reflection and sometimes a bit of healthy self doubt.
    However good people in our society have now been pushed to the next level....being afraid of never being good enough! That is what teachers on the front line are reduced to everyday. Continued exposure can be debilitating.
    Bit like working in a war zone sometimes. The daily classroom tensions, the feeling of constantly being at the mercy of political bigwigs and dodgy egomaniacal ‘experts’. Ofsted demanding more money and more power to ‘whip those lazy teachers about’ everyday.
    Instead of making people feel safe and secure in their professionalism, it makes those who spend the most time on the frontlines battling to educate the most needy and the most poverty stricken....shudder and shake with fear.
    Who next will be burnt at the stake for simply trying their best in the conditions they find themselves everyday?
    Week 1 trying to teach a group of 33 how to light a Bunsen burner, including 10 students with serious special needs and one with the mental age of a 4 year old.
    If I raised my voice to classroom instruction level, the poor kid kept apologising because they thought I was angry!
    This was not on their SEND notes when planning the lesson........I had to change the delivery of the lesson but all the kids left happy they got to use a Bunsen that day. So did I!
    But if someone came and observed that lesson they would have felt the need to tell me how they would have planned it differently and squeezed all the joy out of it for me.
    For my sanity I calculated the amount of time I actually have to plan for each lesson I will end up teaching this year at secondary......based on an 8 to 4 day excluding breaks and lunch it works out to an average of 10 minutes....heh heh. Also excludes admin time on phone calls, directed meetings, detentions, interventions, CPD, data entry, emails, discussions with send support staff, heads of year, hod, technicians, site staff, IT staff and colleagues who simply want to discuss their own lessons.
    If I ain’t good enough at least I.....unlike the ‘trained’ school leaders and other so called ‘experts’ ......know why, down to the last calculated minute..... lol
  19. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    How are things today.
  20. becky70

    becky70 Occasional commenter

    I am going through similar emotions at the moment and really doubting myself. You are not alone. Even if you are a bad teacher, which I doubt, you are not worthless. You are more than your job. Sending a virtual hug.

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