Would You Still Be a Teacher if You Could Do it all Again?

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2 thoughts on “Would You Still Be a Teacher if You Could Do it all Again?

  1. Pingback: End of School Year Reflection – Actual Teaching

  2. Anita

    This is such a hard question. For me teaching has changed so much over the past 26 years since I entered the profession. I would certainly go through all I went through again. Would I enter the teaching profession now as a graduate? … I really don’t know. If I did I would hope I had the staying power to survive.

    The demands are so much more, the support is so much less, and the public opinion and expectations are beyond the ridiculous at times. Teaching has become a huge political football as an easy scapegoat for falling data and filling gaps for every area of child development. The professional status of teaching has dropped while the legalities of what we do and say (covering extended periods of time) have risen astronomically.

    I left teaching (not by choice, because I moved from NZ to Australia and couldn’t get teaching work at the time) and worked in corporate IT for 5 years. The pay and perks were way better, the hours weren’t as long and the 4 weeks annual holiday were actually pure holiday. But I returned to teaching the first opporunity I got and haven’t looked back.

    As an experienced teacher and now working in admin (hopefully with a real classroom perspective – 2 yrs as Head of Curriculum) I really take my hat off to teachers nowadays who have stuck with the profession after the first 2-3 years. It is tough. There are always challenges in teaching, sometimes daily depending on your school and class make up. Some test your strength, others your persistence or resilience and some your actual will to live. No matter how long you teach you are always learning and each year it gets better and somewhat easier to handle.

    The curriculum changes constantly but to be honest the crux of what we teach (especially in literacy and numeracy) hasn’t changed in 26 years … it gets new wording, new checklists and assessment tasks and new resources but essentially doesn’t change much. It is easy as you grow through teaching to become synical about the politicalness and reasoning behind the department’s constant data demands of it all. On the front line in the classroom that all seems meaningless. Education is a strange beast.

    Above all … if you can grow and stick with it … it is the most rewarding job you will ever have. No one goes into teaching for the pay (or the hours or holidays … which are never holidays, especially in your first few years). Those who do quickly leave when they see the reality of the job.

    Would I go into teaching knowing what I do now? …. yes. If I actually knew what I was in for.

    Would I survive past the first 2 years nowadays if I wasn’t prepared and didn’t know what I was really in for? …. the statistics of over 50% leaving after the first 3 years says probably not.

    Liked by 1 person

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