We get told that teaching is a vocation; that our desire to make a change is the driving factor in maintaining a long and healthy career. Guilt starts when this passion begins to filter out of the role and you start to consider other employment options. Consequently, when you begin to hate teaching it is natural to feel isolated, particularly when admitted these thoughts to colleagues can cause resentment. So, what are your options?
Option 01 – Staying in your current school
You might consider staying in your current school as a priority; it is certainly the most straightforward. If you feel empowered to approach your Leadership team you should be open about your feelings and have them support you finding a way forward. Whilst focus is often on the more significant challenges of the role it is easy to let lot’s of small frustrations get the better of us. A productive chat with someone who has the power to make changes can resolve many of these smaller ongoing problems and clear some space to tackle the bigger issues.
A chat with a Senior Leader can also facilitate a conversation about career trajectory. Perhaps you feel undervalued or have a clear idea about the route you would like your career to take; in this case, signposting with Leadership can help them get a better understanding of your needs as an employee.
We tend to think the only acceptable career route for teachers is to climb the hierarchy. However, if you have taken on extra responsibilities or a Leadership role consider if a step back into the classroom teacher role would alleviate your stresses.
Option 02 – Find a role in a new school
If the climate at your current school wouldn’t allow the healthy conversations discussed above, could a move help? Before you decide to quit teaching you should consider seeking employment at a different school. Consider the non-negotiables regarding a new employer and seek that school out. Many of the best schools are quite public about their successes so go deep with your research. For example, perhaps you are an art teacher being squeezed out of the curriculum and suffering a loss of autonomy. You could research schools that are heavily involved in arts organisations, delivery of the Arts Award, ArtsMark winners, etc. This seems straightforward but often when we load up TES jobs we focus on the role rather than the employer. If you think you hate teaching, first consider what would keep you in the role and seek an employer that can offer it.
Option 3 – Time to quit teaching and lose the hate?
The main purpose of this site is to support people that are considering leaving the teaching profession. If you genuinely believe that it is time to quit or at least take a break, please take the time to read the wealth of knowledge and experience contained within these pages. I would suggest you begin preparing to quit teaching by exploring the six-step plan.