What makes a perfect teacher partner? Your 10-point starter

A wish list for teachers to seek out in a partner, courtesy of Rebecca Foster

Rebecca Lee

teacher dating

We teachers make great partners – we’re witty, knowledgeable, charming and calm in a crisis (that "teacher voice" is a transferable skill).

But what makes the perfect teacher partner? I have a few ideas, please feel free to add your own in the comments.

1. They appreciate your unique teacher talents

The perfect teacher partner appreciates your unique teacher gifts. You can hold your bladder for approximately eight hours, silence a room with one look and have the ability to entertain a dinner party with your hilarious teaching anecdotes. If a partner finds any of these things annoying, then there may be trouble ahead.

2. Term-time independence

The perfect teacher partner is able to tolerate long periods of time in their own company during term time. In fact, Monday to Friday from September to July they’re almost totally self-sufficient.

3. Delaying gratification

The perfect teacher partner is a master of delaying their gratification. So what if the next episode of Game of Thrones is on TV tonight, or their favourite film is on at the cinema bang in the middle of exam season, the perfect teacher partner is willing to wait for you to watch it with them.

4. Non judgemental

The perfect teacher partner doesn’t judge you for still being in your PJs at 4pm on a Wednesday in August. You’ve earned that duvet day and they know it.

They don’t judge you for your poor microwave effort when it’s your turn to cook, or for falling asleep in front of the TV, or for coming home in a mood because you had Year 9 last thing. They get it.

5. No guilt tripping

The perfect teacher partner doesn’t guilt trip you for your failings because they appreciate the demands of the job. They might feel like a work widow(er) when you’re up past midnight marking every now and then, but they don’t make you feel bad about it.

Heck, this is the perfect teacher partner – they’re supplying you with tea and chocolate when you’re in marking hell!

6. Predictability

The perfect teacher partner is not the spontaneous type. Sure, being whisked away for a surprise weekend to Paris in November sounds amazing in theory, but not when you’ve got mocks to mark. And sure it’d be fun for that beer after work to evolve into going "out out" on a Thursday but "it’s a school night" still very much applies to you even though you’re an adult.

No. Predictability is a virtue to be valued in the teacher partner; they need to save their spontaneity for the holidays.

7. Tolerates your weird teacher ‘fame’

The perfect teacher partner accepts that when a Year 7 spots you in Tesco it’s a big deal. They can cope with the stares you get when you’re out for a meal in town and that you might be recognised by an ex student at any moment...and then need to have a quick catch up about what they’ve been up to for the past five years.

8. Copes with being corrected

The perfect teacher partner understands that you have high expectations and can’t help yourself when it comes to correcting people. They even find your "10 items or fewer" rant quite endearing.

9. Germ resistant

The perfect teacher partner has the constitution of an ox. They’re not going to be taken down by those disgusting germs you bring home with you.

10. Accepts some unique limitations

The perfect teacher partner accepts that even though they had their heart set on calling their first-born son Archie or Max or Luke, that it’s not just going to happen because you’ve taught some pretty dreadful children with those names.

Alas, on second thoughts, maybe the perfect teacher partner doesn’t exist. Instead, why not just find one that’s perfect for you.

I’m marrying mine in December (you know, ‘cos teacher holiday time).

Rebecca Foster is head of English and associate senior leader at Wyvern St Edmund’s Learning Campus

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