It seems that these days not a day goes by without an article in the news talking about teacher stress due to workload, the pressure of OFSTED, declining student behaviour and the current national teacher recruitment crisis. Not only are fewer people training to become teachers but more existing teachers are choosing to leave the profession in search of a job that will allow them to regain a work-life balance.
Here at Ernesford we are very fortunate that despite the relentless drive to improve standards, all our teachers are as excited as I am about the journey of progress we are on. With only half a term left before the end of another academic year it seems fitting to recognise the wonderful, committed teachers and support staff that we have in our Ernesford community. As I write this blog it is the Friday of the half-term holiday and though I am not at school I know that several of our enthusiastic teachers are in work today. They are giving up their holiday time to support our super students in preparation for their exams.
This is not an expectation this is simply teachers wanting to do everything they can to help the students who are also giving up their holiday time, to achieve the best results possible. You see, what we have here is a team ethos where we are all equally determined to work together towards the same goal which is the success of every young person who wants to do well in their education. What’s more, we are also just as determined to gain success for those students who might not yet recognise the importance of a good education.
So, we have workload stress, expectations of a Headteacher who wants the absolute best for every child, frequent HMI inspections, working long hours planning lessons, providing feedback to guide students to improve their work further, holidays that involve coming into school…the list could go on so, let’s return to my original question, why would anyone want to teach?
The most straightforward response would be ‘to make a difference to the life chances of young people’ noble indeed, yet the video below provides a slightly more developed response about the difference that teachers make. I played this to our staff in morning briefing at the beginning of term because I wanted them to reflect on what a difference they make to the lives of our Ernesford students and to inspire them to continue to raise their expectations of what our young people can achieve. I hope after viewing this, you too can reflect on what difference a teacher can make.