I work as a supply teacher.

I’m the person who teaches your children when their regular teacher is away.

In general it’s a job I love, but my experiences don’t always show things to be rosy in the garden of education.

All names in the blog posts have been changed to spare the blushes of the guilty!


1 Response to About

  1. Lynne says:

    Hi there,

    I am so sorry you are having such a rough time. Supply teaching can be hell, I know I did it on and off for 13 years in secondary schools.

    I would like to comment on the school policy. I am qualified to do so as I was the Senior Advisor for Behaviour Management in a large county in England for 20 years. I managed the Primary Behaviour Support team and the county’s Anti-bullying Strategy. With a small but brilliant team I also supported schools causing concern day in and day out for 10 years. This involved working alongside staff and supporting them to manage behaviour more appropriately and sustainably using certain classroom techniques and also a very successful whole-school system involving both rewards and consequences. I have dealt with every type of behaviour from kids on the roof, to kids who never sit still.

    The Behaviour Policy you describe lacks appropriate rewards as well as fairly instant logical consequences. Whilst I agree that the teacher is ultimately responsible for behaviour in the class as it can be incredibly rewarding for a child to be sent out, teachers must be trained in how to manage behaviour with practical strategies that work. Children soon suss out that warnings are not followed up. We all work and learn through positive reinforcement although that alone, without a positive relationship with the children causing concern will not be sufficient.

    As a supply teacher you will be perceived by the kids as temporary! They will usually say things like ” But our teacher let’s us……..” As you can’t change the policy – that would be the best idea- you will need to establish a very quick relationship with the children.

    I maybe boring you by now so I won’t go on to give you some practical ways of doing that unless you ask me too. Good luck and always remember that as a teacher you have the power to influence the future of all children in your care but knowing how to do that positively requires far more training than any teacher gets in teacher training.

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