Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Supply teaching

Today I worked. Again. For a whole 4, count 'em, 4 hours! Phew!

I am conflicted about being a teacher in general. Out of 6 years since qualification I have only worked at one school I LOVED. One that was so-so, but the other two were vile, and I had really bad experiences. So much so that it made me doubt my abilities as a teacher, and question why I re-trained mid 20's for a job that was destroying my happiness.

There are great things about being a supply teacher:

You get to choose your hours/days/schools you go to
No more planning *huge smiley face*
No staff meetings
You can leave as the bell goes if you have finished your marking
You can actually go on holiday during school term and not have to pay ridiculous prices for holidays

There are not so great things:

The logistics of child care/getting to work on time can be a stress at very short notice
Working for money that is WAY below what you would earn on your point of the pay scale
No rapport with staff/kids
No personal interest in kids achievements
Lack of week/infrequent work
Messes up tax/claiming job seekers allowance
Working for an umbrella company, you pay them to pay you?! Plus you pay more national Insurance than you would otherwise
Kids behaviour can be more challenging as you're not their usual teacher

However, for the time being, this is what I am going to do. It brings in some much needed cash, and it gives me a chance to be Aly again and not just mummy. Surprisingly the two schools I have been to so far have been lovely, the one today even had a cat, a cat! Never seen such a thing! And I have felt my mood is lighter after finishing work. Probably because I know it's out of the way for the week and I can go back to mummy mode & catch up on sleep when Benjamin goes to bed.

One thing I don't like about doing supply is the attitude of "you're just supply". It seems like supply staff get all the playground duties, some places staff have looked down at me because I'm not "a proper teacher". Don't look down on me, I've chosen to do supply, I've chosen to have time at home with my kids, not work until 10pm each night and weekends. When my kids are older I will no doubt get back to doing that, unless a miraculous lottery win comes along.

Supply teaching gives me the best bit of teaching-being in the classroom with the kids, but without the hassles of a permanent teaching post.


  1. I can't believe other members of staff look down on you for being a supply teacher! If supply teachers didn't exist then the regular full time teachers would be absolutely run off their feet! Hold your head up high and make them realise that you're doing them a favour, not the other way round!

    CJ x


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