This guest blog post is written by Chester, a lay officer for a major teaching union. This means he is a classroom teacher who has been elected to serve as a representative for the area covered by his Local Authority. To fulfil this role he put classroom teaching on pause in September 2015.
When you’re all told to attend a whole staff briefing at 3:20, you know something is up. And sure enough, it was: last Monday we were informed that Ofsted would be in the very next day. You could hear awkward gulps in the near-silence of the staff-room as we anxiously awaited details.
Our last Ofsted had come 4 years ago, and I vividly remembered it as a stressful period. But there’s a lot of talk about how Ofsted have changed and are now showing a more humane side. So did we find this to be true? Read more
In the first year that I mentored an NQT I occasionally reassured her with lines like: “Don’t worry, next year it will get easier.” She made it through that year, and the next, and at the staff meal on the last day of term she politely accused me of lying. She still found teaching to be a bloody hard job – and this was coming from her, one of the most efficient and effective teachers I’ve ever had the pleasure to work with. It has become a little joke of ours: at the end of every year I promise her, “No, it’s next year when it gets easier.” So what’s the truth of it? Does teaching get easier with time, or is this just a little white lie we tell to PGCEs, NQTs, and to ourselves, to get us through the bad times? Read more