Sunday, July 23, 2023

There's No Place Like Home

It's not new news that the retention in teaching, in my teen to adult life, has never been great.  When I was first teaching in Secondary Education in 2010 - 2015.  I became one those statistics of the time, almost 50% of the teaching profession leaving at around the five year mark. 

I may have broken the mould given I had worked in FE prior for a couple of years, but that was a completely different kettle of fish altogether.

The Guardian in June 2023  cited record numbers of teachers quitting the profession, with almost 9% of the teaching population leaving before retirement in 2021 - 2022.  Sadly, the numbers don't surprise me.  I have heard so many horror stories over the years of bullying and excessive workloads, expensive teachers being put on 'capability plans', people being managed out because their 'faces don't fit', they are linked to teacher's unions, or just can't cope with impossible expectations. 

Yet, I chose to return. 

I had left teaching in 2015 to pursue self-employment in Financial Services and to expand another hobby business.  I was extremely disillusioned with the Education system being more focused on examinations and results than producing well-rounded young people who would settle nicely into society, albeit their local economies or beyond. 

The pandemic played a large part in me losing interest in having my own businesses and I started to up my supply hours/days.  Prior to the Pandemic, I had always done an afternoon / day in a school of my choice pretty much as it was really just to keep my hand in.  The more I did during the academic year 2021-2022, I realised that I really missed the routine but most of all the children having the ability to make me laugh every single day

I realised I wanted change, so I sold my house, got my affairs in order, winding businesses down and agreed to work in a school on a supply basis, but full time, in the North East as a Teacher of MFL with a view to moving overseas, the plan being the UAE.  

Needless to say, the children had me by the first half-term.  By Christmas I knew I didn't want to leave the UK so I explored all of my options here including teaching in Cornwall, changing phase to primary and even changing subject via the Subject Knowledge Enhancement schemes. 

In April, my job had become available on a permanent basis and I applied.  I had my choice of schools given the amount of vacancies clearly going unfilled in the North East and being reposted repeatedly.  I saw so much potential in the school and the children where I was, I just couldn't imagine working anywhere else. 

By the end of the academic year, I have a responsibility for careers over two schools in the Trust as an Enhanced Career Leader, starting from September.  I really believe that my business skills will help me in this role and I quite fancied something other than being a Head of Department, which I had done in my previous teaching stint. 

So, this is me.  Back home in the profession I belong and the one I never stopped loving.  Encouraging teachers who are close to leaving the profession letting them know that a change of school can change everything! 

Expect to see more posts about my Career Leadership journey, teaching strategies in MFL, political and general musings linked to Education.  Possibly my new house-buying journey 😂!

What do you like to read about? Or do you prefer other formats such as podcast / video? 

Bump into me on Twitter @issacgreaves.


There's No Place Like Home

It's not new news that the retention in teaching, in my teen to adult life, has never been great.  When I was first teaching in Secondar...