'There is nowhere else to go'

6th January 2006 at 00:00
John Wells, 53, is head of Mount Pleasant junior in Southampton and except for a brief stint as a librarian has taught all his working life.

He is married, with two children aged three and six, and his wife will return to work as soon as they are in school to help pay the mortgage. He earns Pounds 40,000.

Although he wanted to go into advertising, his passion for art led him to train as an art teacher. But his first job was in a primary school - he found he loved it and has stayed ever since.

But he would not try and push his children into teaching, he says, nor dissuade them if they wanted to pursue it as a career. "I will support them in whatever they want to do," he said. "But I have found teaching narrows your horizons, once you are a teacher there is nowhere else for you to go."

He commutes from Salisbury, about an hour each way, leaves home at 7am, and returns around 6.30pm.

He eats dinner after his family, before bathing the children and putting them to bed. Then if work needs doing, he will do it between 8.30pm and 10pm, or watch television, or sit and relax with his wife. Although he tries not to take work home during the week, this is often unavoidable.

"As a couple, my wife and I have been out together about once in the past three years," he said. "We do things occasionally individually, but it is a question of childcare."

Once a fortnight, Mr Wells, a season ticket holder for Reading FC, goes to a match where he meets old friends and fellow fans.

"That's my little space, and I suppose it is my main social outlet."

At the weekends, the family visit places of interest or go to the park. Mr Wells will also make time for an hour-long run to keep fit, and usually several hours work on Sunday before the week starts.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now