Teaching: best job in the world?

I’m often asked why I chose to be a teacher when it seems to be synonymous with an immense workload, ever changing goalposts and lack of funding, not to mention Ofsted! My reply is simple – there is no other job like it!

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not all harmonious classrooms and children skipping happily around the playground… but despite the challenges faced by those working within the education sector, I believe that it’s one of THE most rewarding jobs out there.

But you can’t escape the recent headlines regarding the well-being of educators. Put simply, the physical and mental health and well-being of teachers is at risk. A recent survey commissioned by the Education Support Partnership makes for bleak reading. It states that an overwhelming majority of the UK’s education professionals have suffered physical and mental health issues as a result of their jobs, and over half of those surveyed considered leaving in the past two years. This appears to go some way in explaining the findings of a National Audit Office report which revealed that last year alone, 35,000 teachers left their jobs for reasons other than retirement.

These are worrying statistics and with more pressure than ever coming from curriculum changes, changes in assessment, emphasis on performance data and Ofsted, the one topic that appears to be consistently swept aside is that of the health and well-being of those who teach. A job in education might not be for everyone, but it’s important to remember the pivotal role that teachers play in children’s lives. The education system is getting a bad press right now, but we must encourage people into the profession.

So here are seven reasons why I believe teaching is beyond incredible:
1. Teachers ignite a spark in children 
2. Boredom is not an option – every day is different 
3. Teachers are lucky enough to work with their biggest fans who are also their harshest critics - the children! 
4. Being part of a child’s ‘lightbulb’ moment is priceless 
5. Teachers have the opportunity to inspire others and facilitate the discovery of hidden talents and passions 
6. Teachers truly make a difference in the lives of young people. Indeed, for some children, teachers can even be the stability in their lives. 
7. Even on the darkest, toughest of days, you will always find humour and compassion in the classroom 

Teachers have a direct impact in shaping the future. They are teaching the leaders, innovators and movers and shakers of tomorrow. They’re helping to change and shape society for the better and I count myself lucky to be one of them!

By Jennie Adams on 1st February 2018

Also published in Lindfield Life Magazine. You can download the free magazine and read the article here.

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