Why teachers want to change career
Teacher workload is generally viewed as one of the major reasons that a career change for teachers is so desirable. Whether there has been a genuine increase in pressure, a change in the nature of the role or some combination of the two; it’s hard to argue that teachers in the UK are faced with increasingly challenging workplace experiences. According to a recent TES article, last year 3750 teachers were signed off from work on a long term basis due to stress. To put this in perspective, that is one member of staff per 8 schools in the UK.
Each year fantastic teachers reach the end of their tether with a role that leaves them unfulfilled or exhausted. Perhaps your autonomy has been removed, you are struggling to see your children, you are suffering under tyrannical Leadership. Knowing what to do next can be confusing.
What is the story behind this website?
When I decided to leave teaching and change careers, I felt like guidance was almost non-existent. I remember sitting in CPD with these well-paid facilitators. Inevitably they would start a little defensively; “I used to be a teacher, I know how hard you all work”. They would deliver 60 minutes of waffle and pocket my daily wage. These people had escaped, I wanted to be like them.
It was time to make a change!
I remember being sat in a Leadership meeting, having just been told I wasn’t quite ready for SLT, and feeling a little dejected. I looked around the room at my future-self. Stressed, an absent-father, first to arrive and last to leave, isolated, far removed from the good bit of working in a school (teaching!). I had a sense of realisation come over me and as I left the room I looked at my colleague and fellow Middle-Leader and said, “I’m done!”. Now, it wasn’t unusual for me to leave meetings and express my displeasure but this time I meant it.
My research focussed on roles outside of the school walls which was a little scary. However, after some late nights I found a role I honestly love. It’s hard to describe how life changing the right job can be, and I wake up every day so in love with my job that I feel a bit cringy telling people about it.
I am a Teacher. Get me out of here!
The key thing is that you need to cast the net as soon as possible. The hardest thing about leaving teaching is finding a job that aligns with the resignation dates, and an employer that is willing to wait out a lengthy notice period. In summary, resign and cross your fingers or simply start applying and get to grips with recruitment timeframes. Whilst applying I found that in general Universities took around 4-8 weeks from deadline to interview, charity organisations varied considerably.
Employers want to find talent that fits the team. Consequently, you will probably find that a couple of months notice period isn’t a concern for most organisations. I would say that if a dream role comes up and they need you to start sooner, negotiate a leaving date with the school. Headteachers will sometimes accept short notice periods when budgets are tight or health conditions are considered.
So, what are my career change options?
It can be life-changing to change career, so If you are toying with the idea, get started today. I have listed some of the main steps in this short guide and if you subscribe to the Blog and follow me on Twitter you will be in the loop as new advice is published. There are a ton of articles already published on this website from resignation letter templates to tips on building a second income so take the time to browse, and leave a comment or DM me if you need specific support.
Start with this guide.