‘I’m fed up with martyrs telling me that “teaching is all about the kids”‘

We don’t need constant reminders that the reason we deal with excessive workload, stress and Ofsted is the children – they’re the reason we became teachers in the first place, writes one teacher in Tes.

I am unrelenting in my conviction that teachers mark too much, and I’ll bang on about that fact to anybody who’ll listen.

Last week, somebody told me that they finally agreed with me on this point. Interestingly – and infuriatingly – this same person also saw fit to tell me that their view on ticking, flicking and dicking about (can I get that trademarked, please?) wasn’t prompted by my own vehement sermons on the subject, but by reading a blog post on the subject, written by someone else.

“The problem with you, Matt,” they helpfully explained, “is that you’re always banging on about the impact of marking on teachers. It’s all workload, workload, workload. This person, however, sold their idea to me because they were constantly referring to the impact on students. You never mentioned students; they did.”

I’m fed up with people telling me, “It’s about the kids.”

I know it’s about the kids. In fact, when I signed up for this thing we call teaching, I did so on the underlying and widely held assumption that teaching would involve “doing stuff for kids”. I never felt the need to proclaim this fact loudly from the rooftops. 

But this doesn’t mean I hate kids.

In fact, it’s because I don’t hate kids that I’ll mention Ofsted in meetings. Because in my experience, a negative Ofsted judgement doesn’t do a lot for the confidence of the kids I do my best for.  It’s because I don’t hate kids that I’ll bang on about the importance of teacher wellbeing because no kid deserves a teacher who can’t do the job to the best of their ability because they’re at breaking point.

Read the full article ‘I’m fed up with martyrs telling me that “teaching is all about the kids”‘

 Please tell us your thoughts in comments or via Twitter ~ Tamsin

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    When the Head of English constantly refers in writing to children / pupils / students as “kids”, it’s probably just as well that he refrains from marking.

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