Author Topic: Teaching in England  (Read 751 times)

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Offline melissagarland

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Teaching in England
« on: April 24, 2017, 01:57:49 AM »
Hello everyone! This is my first post here, although I've been doing quite a bit of reading. I apologize in advance if this post seems to have been discussed before, but what I've found isn't very specific to our situation or it is outdated.

My husband and I are in the initial stages of trying to move to England. We are both teachers in the US. My experience is teaching elementary/primary grade levels as well as K-12 ESOL, and my husband has experience teaching high school math and science. From what I gather, my husband shouldn't have much trouble finding a teaching position, as math/science secondary teachers are in high demand currently. Does anyone have any idea of whether I will realistically find a job in England? Also, if anyone has any tips for finding or applying for teaching jobs, we would greatly appreciate it.

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2017, 08:54:10 AM »
If your husband were to find a job and be sponsored for a Tier 2 work visa, under the current immigration rules, you would also be allowed to work as his dependent.  So only one of you needs to find a sponsor.

You may really want to think long and hard about this though.  I have a few local American friends who are teachers here and not one of them would recommend teaching in the UK...  Just something to be mindful of.  Very long days, high pressure, and crazy government bureaucracy. 

Offline physicskate

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2017, 06:46:05 PM »
As a physics teacher in the UK (for the past 5 years) - DON@T DO IT!!!

I've heard things aren't great in the USA either, but you will take a MASSIVE pay cut, huge rise in living costs. Something like 75% of teachers are on anti-depressants. I've seen it ruin quite a lot of people. I'm trying to plan my route out. In my 5th year of teaching, I make less than a first year teacher in Alabama... which is one of the least paid states for teachers.

The one real barrier you will (both) have is lack of UK experience, which means you would only get jobs in rough, inner-city schools with huge turnover of staff. I have heard of a few schools where every member of staff was new within 4 years - and these weren't terrible schools. If you like being social workers with no lives instead of teachers, proceed with caution...

I work 70ish hour weeks and know of no teachers who work any fewer...

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Offline Dennis the Menace!!

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2017, 06:52:45 PM »
Hi,

In addition to KFdancer's heads up, there's also the factors of;

1. Relatively low pay in the teaching profession.
2. You'll both 'stick out' as different to the kids and also parents, which will most likely make you targets, positively hopefully in that you make a difference to kids thinking/lives, but 'most likely' negative.

In relation to the above, please research more and as much as you can from as many teachers as you can speak to or hopefully, as I don't know, if there's a forum online where teachers discuss aspects of their job. As a couple, spend as much time as you can evaluating this and if you feel that mentally it's something you feel you can both handle.

I've mentioned it a few times recently on this forum and recently, it's been the topic of conversation on LBC for the reasons there's alot of teachers leaving the profession. Plenty of teachers call in saying they're loving it and things are good for balance, but many also call in citing after a few years they have to jack it in due to the reasons above even though it's all they've wanted to do.

It's hard to say 'realistically' what your chances of finding a job is and perhaps where in the country too, but I'd say you have 'some' increased chances due to those leaving the profession. My mum's Bro's wife, recently retired from an East London School for girls where she was head of the English Dept. The stories she recalls, and things that happen - she firmly says she'd not recommend anyone young to go into the profession. A big part of the reason why is the government red tape and the fact that standards over the years have fallen for UK rankings because of that and other aspects too.

Cheers, DtM! West London & Slough UK!

Offline ksand24

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2017, 09:23:07 PM »
Two of my friends trained to be teachers about 5 years ago - one became a Geography teacher and the other a Physics teacher.

The Physics teacher stuck it out for a year before quitting (she worked at a posh private school), and she now works as a volcanologist instead.

The Geography teacher is still teaching - he started off working in an inner city state school with a pretty bad reputation. He quickly made it to Head of the Geography department (after only a year), although I get the feeling he only got the promotion because everyone else had quit and there was no one else to take on the role!

He's now at a different school, and last time I spoke to him, the job sounded like a nightmare... the classrooms are crowded, half the teachers are signed off with stress and many are quitting, there are so many extra duties to contend with that they barely have time to actually teach their classes. He said he leaves for work around 7 am every day and doesn't get home until 8 or 9 pm.

The advice he gave me was: Don't ever go into teaching!

I had actually considered becoming a physics teacher back in 2009, when I was struggling to find a graduate job (they give good bursaries to trainee physics teachers), but I'm so glad I didn't now!

Offline physicskate

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #5 on: April 25, 2017, 06:32:29 PM »
Two of my friends trained to be teachers about 5 years ago - one became a Geography teacher and the other a Physics teacher.

The Physics teacher stuck it out for a year before quitting (she worked at a posh private school), and she now works as a volcanologist instead.

The Geography teacher is still teaching - he started off working in an inner city state school with a pretty bad reputation. He quickly made it to Head of the Geography department (after only a year), although I get the feeling he only got the promotion because everyone else had quit and there was no one else to take on the role!

He's now at a different school, and last time I spoke to him, the job sounded like a nightmare... the classrooms are crowded, half the teachers are signed off with stress and many are quitting, there are so many extra duties to contend with that they barely have time to actually teach their classes. He said he leaves for work around 7 am every day and doesn't get home until 8 or 9 pm.

The advice he gave me was: Don't ever go into teaching!

I had actually considered becoming a physics teacher back in 2009, when I was struggling to find a graduate job (they give good bursaries to trainee physics teachers), but I'm so glad I didn't now!

Don't do it ksand!!!

I left uni in 2008... which was not a great time for getting a first job, to say the least.  While some days are ok (and I just changed jobs for a bit of a change/ refresh - a change can be as good as a rest, they say!), I really wish I had a way out... I feel like a totally different person that I used to be. Far less confident, far less interesting... I feel like I no longer have anything interesting to say to anyone in person...

but I digress.

The TES is where to find jobs and also where to get a feel on the 'community' boards. I suggest you start with 'workplace dilemmas'. Some pretty horrendous stuff...
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Offline jimbocz

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #6 on: April 26, 2017, 11:29:37 AM »

far less interesting... I feel like I no longer have anything interesting to say to anyone in person...


No way that's true and you should not allow yourself to think it.  At a party I would always want to talk to the physics person.

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #7 on: April 26, 2017, 12:04:29 PM »
No way that's true and you should not allow yourself to think it.  At a party I would always want to talk to the physics person.

Totally agree!

No one ever wants to talk about Excel though.   ;)

Offline physicskate

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #8 on: April 26, 2017, 09:30:49 PM »
Got to work at 7:45 this morning... Got home at 6:00pm and started working again at 7:30 till now... Oi vay! Taking a 10 minute break and then back to the grind! A few more hours to do tonight...

So on paper it looks like I need a) a life and b) new vocation??

But I moan a lot. At least I get long holidays... where I work about 3 days a week (about 24 hours per week) preparing for new courses/ amending plans/ looking for new ideas...
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Offline jimbocz

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #9 on: April 27, 2017, 10:18:18 AM »
I understand the new trend is for teachers to work 3 or 4 days per week and spend the extra days off working for free just to catch up with the insane expectations.  I've never heard of anything so bizarre in my life. 

British people won't spend a penny to take care of kids, old people, the mentally ill or the disabled .  They will happily spend any amount to take care of dogs, cats and Spanish Donkeys.

Offline melissagarland

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2017, 03:56:33 AM »
Thank you to everyone! It sounds as thought teaching in the UK is very similar to teaching here in the US. Do any of you have experience teaching in a private or international school or know anyone who does? Also, is it extremely difficult to get these jobs?

Offline KFdancer

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2017, 12:45:38 PM »
Thank you to everyone! It sounds as thought teaching in the UK is very similar to teaching here in the US. Do any of you have experience teaching in a private or international school or know anyone who does? Also, is it extremely difficult to get these jobs?

Physicskate works in a private school.  Or at least she has.

Offline physicskate

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #12 on: May 01, 2017, 01:58:21 PM »
Thank you to everyone! It sounds as thought teaching in the UK is very similar to teaching here in the US. Do any of you have experience teaching in a private or international school or know anyone who does? Also, is it extremely difficult to get these jobs?

I've worked in three independents (2 boarding and one day) and one state school. You won't get a look into an independent without UK experience. Behaviour and class sizes are not always better than state. There are only three American curriculum schools in the UK, so I wouldn't hold your breath there.

Getting UK experience and your head around all of the jargon (HAPS, LAPS, AfL, ALIS, YELLIS, MidYis, GCSEs, A Levels, modules, coursework) is key to getting a job in teaching in the UK. Yes, there is a shortage of some subjects in some areas of the UK, but that does not mean they will just want anyone to walk in the door.

I would not let my child become a teacher (not that I have a kid, for which I have been berated by colleagues, but that is a different story altogether!).
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Offline historyenne

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #13 on: May 01, 2017, 02:52:00 PM »
With your ESOL experience, one thing you might consider is teaching EFL here in the UK. It's a pretty booming business with lots of schools, including Young Learner programmes that would suit your K-12 experience. It doesn't pay well and has taken hits lately from Brexit and the weak pound, but the students tend to be fairly motivated and you get far less of the behaviour problems and workload that standard teaching has. I've taught EFL here since 2009 and I love it. I've considered doing a subsidised PGCE several times, but ultimately don't want to deal with all the BS and stress. You won't get rich in EFL, but it's pretty rewarding in other ways.
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Offline Teachittome80

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Re: Teaching in England
« Reply #14 on: May 28, 2017, 10:06:12 PM »
I'm wondering what are some alternatives to the classroom setting for those who have had so much time in the classroom but want out??