I stopped teaching full-time more than five years ago, I write about it here, and though I’ve been doing intermittent tuition and 1-2-1 since then, and recently I’d kind of decided to let it all slide, just let it fade away.
Since which time I’ve been getting numerous random cold-calls and emails from agencies asking me if I want supply-teaching work. I suspect that the teaching industry is in crisis, that more and more teachers are walking away, hence the glut of supply-teaching companies and supply-teaching offers. One of my former colleagues, an excellent teacher, now pushes a trolley in a supermarket and is much happier for doing so. Another former colleague has reduced her timetable to two days a week. Everyone wants out.
Teaching is a great job, spoiled.
I did agree to a day’s work in a school a couple of weeks before Christmas, to make a bit extra cash, and though I can still do the job, I had no interest in patrolling the classroom with a metaphorical chair and whip, and it came to me in a moment that I’d never be returning to a classroom again. After that day, I realised, as I stood at the front of the class, I was done. I was smiling to myself at this sudden realisation and caught the eye of a young student who smiled back at me. I leaned across the desk and whispered, ‘Can you believe I get paid for doing this?’
She giggled. So did I.
The schoolday ended, and I left the school knowing I’d never stand at the front of a class again.
But since then, I’ve had calls and emails from companies contacting me about doing supply work.