Wishing my life away

As I said in an earlier post, I’ve lost a lot of the enthusiasm I had as a new teacher. The reasoning for this is, I believe, that I’ve gotten tired of waiting for my teaching career to start.

I wished for my PGCE to be over with, so I could start teaching, I wished for the end of each term so I could rest, sleep and catch up on missed paperwork, I’m still wishing for the end of my NQT year and my golden hello.

When I started my NQT year it all seemed so straightforward. I was going to do two terms in that school on maternity leave, then move on, either to a permanent job or to a term on supply. At the end of that year I would be a fully qualified teacher, with a secure, permanent job and in receipt of a golden hello. It didn’t quite work out like that, however.

On supply, especially on daily supply, I’m very guilty of wishing my time away. Maybe tomorrow will be the day that I get that phone call. Maybe this Friday will be the week when a suitable position will be advertised in the TES. Maybe my agency will find me something for next term? Or the next? Maybe the next term? It’s very frustrating. And all the time the agencies are telling me “It’s always quiet at this time of year,” “the schools are only asking for cover supervisors” and “There’s not much call for languages at the moment.” This is all very well of course, but I have to live, I have to pay my bills, have a social life, eat, make plans for the future.

Normal teachers look forward to the holidays. Supply teachers dread them. There’s no chance of work. At all. Agents tell us that holiday pay is rolled into your pay, so you should be able to cover it if you’re careful. How am I supposed to do this without full time work? One agency has paid me £8000 this financial year. Before tax. Since April. Almost 10 months have gone by and that’s my pay for almost a year. Am I supposed to live on that? If it wasn’t for my husband I’d be living with my parents again, or I’d be doing something other than teaching.

I have to believe that things will get better soon. I’m a newly-wed, and very happy in my new marriage, but We can’t plan for the future. We can’t get a mortgage. We can’t have children. We can’t even book a holiday until my work situation improves. I fell like our life together is on hold and it’s all my fault.

I just wish I could live in the present, enjoy my life as it is now and stop wishing my life away.

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6 Responses to Wishing my life away

  1. Karita says:

    This isn’t your fault.

  2. me says:

    I am in the exact same situation I have 10 weeks left of my NQT year to complete and I cant as I cannot find a teaching job, I refuse to apply for any maternity jobs now I only want permenant posts as I dont want to be in this situation again. I have taken a cover supervisor job that is permenant and not much different take home monthly wage compared to an NQT take home wage. Its tough but supply is not guaranteed so I thought this was the most mature thing to do for regular income for now. Maybe you should do this?!

  3. Miss B Have says:

    Nope, won’t do it. On principle. While I understand why you’ve made this decision, I know that I would feel exploited. I worked bloody hard to get QTS, and I’m not ready to give up yet.

    There’s no point now anyway, as supply timetable is already ticking away. I’ll take a maternity cover post though, as I could at least cover my NQT year.

    And Karita, that’s sweet. Of course I know it’s not my fault, but it’s very frustrating all the same.

  4. Katherine says:

    I feel for you, my husband is in the same position and is going crazy with only getting a day or two of supply teaching a week, if that, and desperate to finish his NQT. Good luck with finding a full time post!

  5. Dilara says:

    I’ve done two terms of my NQT year and I left because I was being bullied – the employer then gave me an unfair reference so its now even harder to get a new job!!
    I dont know what to do – I have wanted to be a teacher all my life I trained and had no issues but 12 weeks – 12 weeks!! – is literally ruining my life because I cant get a job and I feel like there’s no hope 😦
    you cant plan for the future, you cant even think about the next month because you never know what will happen – its so disheartening.
    the supply jobs i have had have been positive but they are few and far between with poor behaviour (usually because the school wont support a new teacher

    • Miss B Have says:

      I feel your pain. It can be really difficult to get work as an NQT. Particularly supply. It stinks. It has taken me 3 years, but I have now, almost officially, passed my NQT year. It happened for me, but it took time. Keep at it, if you can.

      Just remember, you don’t have to use the bad reference. If you’ve managed to get any supply work at all you can use them. Or your agency. I have done this in the past. A month in an ok school would be enough for you to use this as a reference too.

      Best of luck xxx

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