Friday Five: Things non-teachers get wrong about teachers
Despite the pressures of the profession, most teachers would agree that teaching is an incredibly rewarding job. But it’s not easy. And when you’re still marking books at midnight, there’s nothing that will tip you over the edge faster than one of these five irksome assumptions.
1. Teachers finish work at 3pm. Which is obviously why you’re still marking books at midnight… Of course, you’d have done it sooner but you’ve had faculty meetings, a school play rehearsal and detention duty already this evening. And to top it all off, you’ve just received an email asking if you can spare a couple of hours to do a stint on the tombola at the school fair this Saturday.
2. Teachers get 13 weeks holiday. This might be true on paper, but so is the fact that the average teaching contract is based on a 37-hour working week, with an hour for lunch… Ha! Forget the Costa del Sol, your "holidays" are for marking, planning and putting up displays. Only after you've finished all that will there be time for sleeping.
3. A school trip is a free holiday. Absolutely! If your idea of a holiday has you up at dawn, making packed lunches and encouraging 60-plus overexcited kids not to be silly/break something/spend all their pocket money on sweets.
4. Teachers are full of clichés. It’s a little known fact that teacher training courses do not actually include a module on clichés. If you hear stock phrases like, “I’m not angry, I’m disappointed” and “It’s your own time you’re wasting!”, then they are being said because they are true. So do something about it.
5. Teachers are just big kids. Erm, yeh. We might give you that one.