Dear Lily (not your real name). When I read about your experience ("It's the job I really love - but teaching has destroyed me", 18 May), I nearly cried. I'm in my third year and I feel the same way. I enjoy the "teaching" part of teaching, but the workload is never-ending and I end up feeling guilty: there is always more I could do.
The culture of my school and the attitude of the media is that we should have a "no excuses" culture. I want to provide endless support to my pupils, have all their work marked to the full and provide engaging learning experiences; however, I don't have time. Like you, I cut my hours to cope, but I feel I'm working just as hard, yet never doing enough.
I was told by a senior lecturer on my PGCE course that how well a teacher teaches is, to put it bluntly, down to their intelligence. I feel as though, for the 60 or 70 hours a week I'm putting in, only to be getting satisfactory to good gradings means I'm simply not good enough. My confidence is low, yet this is the job I want to do. I am thinking of leaving as soon as I can, but I'm scared I won't find other employment.
It gave me a bit of comfort to read your article, to feel as though I'm not alone. I would really like to hear from others who feel the same way. Thank you for writing in.
Julie (real name and address supplied).