It’s official. I survived the first week at school. And with some hindsight, and a steaming hot bubble bath, I am now weighing up my decision to jump out of the private frying pan and into the state fire.
When I jumped ship, I got the regular low mutter of but aren’t the kids out there awful? Do you have a stab vest? Well, actually so far the kids have been more respectful! Yes, some are disaffected, but that’s a challenge that I’m up for. The atmosphere is different – my best compliment all week has been from a year 11 – “are you our new teacher? Miss, your skirt is well swag!” Cue me responding in a Miles Jupp accent… I’m afraid the posh is here to stay. Turns out my age is catching up with me, personally I thought the skirt was stylish and quirky. Who knew I had swag? Perhaps I do indeed OLO! (See? Totally down with the kids isn’t it?)
I loved my old department and I really miss some people from back in my familiar Hogwarts surroundings, I miss knowing everyone, dressing up like batman & I still can’t listen to Jerusalem with a straight face or lump in my throat, but being consistently on edge about everything, there wasn’t the atmosphere I have now. It’s manic, like the start of every term but this initial message of ‘do your best’ is taken to heart. Results count, but the pastoral side for both students and staff is just as important. On which note, I have seen my girls every night before bedtime this week. I have been home by 6pm (aside from parents evening). They have their Mummy back.
I keep waiting for the catch. But instead I just feel more confident as a teacher. I’m tired, as you should be at the end of the first week, but it’s a satisfied tired rather than the laying on the floor crying after being on duty for 15 straight hours tired that was a regular aspect of my term time.
It’s the same job description (with less system support, and more year 7s), but on another planet.
This is my arm – it translates to ‘good enough’ as in ‘your best will always be good enough’.
I began to doubt that my best was ever going to be good enough last year, but I think my best probably will be here. Not because I have lower expectations, but because without the overwhelming pressure and stress, I now have the freedom to grow rather than be moulded. That rebellious streak in me just won’t allow me to be beaten down ever again. I know I’m good at this and can get even better. And B-Dog apparently also has swag!
Note: I had to read that last bit out loud. It sounds ridiculous in my southern British accent!