London, UK; November 2019 – Results of a poll published by the UK’s largest teaching union earlier this year said that around one in five teachers (18%) plan to leave classroom teaching within the next two years. Figures also showed that around 36,000 working-age teachers had left the profession last year.
Some blame the volume of marking, the excessive number of pupils in classes, the sheer diversity of learning needs, others the unrealistic expectations of senior management or the absence of a satisfying work/life balance. Many say the environment is negatively affecting their mental and physical wellbeing.
One such teacher shared his story recently in a blog published on JobsinChildcare.com, where he explained how he left school teaching after 12 years in the profession.
“I enjoyed teaching and learning, but the workload was crazy and the various and competing demands from the numerous audiences I was expected to satisfy were proving too much. For many months, I noted, as did my family and friends, that the job was making me feel stressed and deeply unhappy,” the former teacher says.
Around this time, he came in contact with an old friend who had been working as a private home tutor to a family in Moscow.
“He was working for a wealthy Russian family for just a few hours a day (late afternoon to early evening), five days a week. His salary was much higher than that of a class teacher in the UK. The family rented an apartment for him to live in. There was also some exciting international travel involved. His social life in Moscow was fantastic.”
The idea piqued his interest though he says he wasn’t altogether confident that he would be the right fit for such a role. But his friend was encouraging and said his years of teaching counted highly in his favour.
The teacher registered with an agency and secured the first post he applied for – a private position working for a family in India with one son, aged 11. Much like his friend, he worked for just a few hours per day, five days a week, had his own apartment provided and enjoyed a substantial salary increase, as well as having the opportunity to travel.
“I had found my way out of classroom life and went on to enjoy four fantastic years in India, enjoying all that is good about being a teacher. It was the happiest of times from which I took great memories and made wonderful friends.”
The same teacher recently moved to Moscow to fill a new position with a family, enjoying similar perks and the benefits of living in a new and exotic location.
“While the UK government struggles with attempts to address teacher workload and professional pressures, teachers who have the freedom to consider the option of private tutoring abroad, may find a new world opening up before them with greater flexibility, less stress and a more fulfilling lifestyle,” says James Alger, Founder of Jobs in Childcare, a jobs site that connects nannies, governesses, early years specialists, child-carers, teachers and tutors with a wide range of vacancies across the globe.
Looking back now the former teacher says he almost regrets not having left sooner.
“I couldn’t at the time even conceive that there could be opportunities out there for me to continue to teach and enjoy all of the unquestionable positives of the job and also largely rid myself of the negatives that had driven me to such despair. I would definitely recommend exploring the very real option of becoming a governess/governor or private tutor abroad or even in the UK.
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