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    Hi everyone,

    I've been offered a place on a PGCE, and this is obviously subject to CRB check and health check etc. I've recently suffered health problems. My concern is that the health check is going to flag up this time taken off work and my health problems in the recent past, and this might affect my place on the course. Has anyone else had a similar experience?
    Thanks
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    It's difficult to say really. As (I presume) you are still on medication, you may have to go and have a chat with the admissions tutors/people who deal with the health checks about the ins and outs of the situation.

    I don't think that they can discriminate against you because of it, but they may need to establish whether it will affect your university work/placement/life.
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    Hey,

    I have been on meds for depression for six years and I declared it. I haven't been hospitalized for a year and a half, and my doctors think I'm well able for it, so I'm trying not to worry. I think they'll trust you to be honest about whether you think you'll be able for the workload and pressure. I definitely wouldn't have been able two years ago, but I'm confident that I can handle it now. It's always best to be honest though - and as my friend said, maybe they'll be able to include you in their quota of students with illness/disabilities.

    Anyway, I wouldn't worry too much.
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    Please don't think I am being unsympathetic but teaching can be an extremely stressful profession and people who have suffered with depression in the past often struggle to cope with the demands of the job.

    Every day, 15,000 teachers call in sick (approximately 1 in 30 of our workforce). DCSF (conveniently and deliberately) do not collect figures about the reasons for absence but I promise well over 50% of all illness is stress-related.
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    (Original post by gyakutengrrl)
    Hi everyone,

    I've been offered a place on the Primary PGCE at Canterbury Christ Church uni for 2010, and this is obviously subject to CRB check and health check etc.

    But.... I'm really worried about my health check, as I've lately (in the past 3 months) been suffering with depression and anxiety, and have been put on medication. I also had to take some time off work last year due to this, and you have to declare this on your health form.

    However, I have since made some positive changes in my life (including the decision to leave my job and apply for this PGCE) which have given me such a boost, and alongside the medication I feel under control of it now and can't wait to start a new chapter.

    My concern is that the health check is going to flag up this time taken off work and my health problems in the recent past, and this might affect my place on the course, even though it is now under control. Has anyone else had a similar experience? Can they refuse you a place on the grounds that you are taking medication for depression?

    Thanks
    I know exactly how you feel. Although I don't take medication I do suffer from anxiety and depression and I was worried about declaring it on the form but you have to be honest with these things. I am able to cope with life well and the demands of my degree. I was given a place on the Primary PGCE.

    I don't know if they can refuse you a place, they may have to decide whether you can cope with the demands of a PGCE but I'm sure they will let you know ASAP if there is a problem.
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    (Original post by Mr M)
    Please don't think I am being unsympathetic but teaching can be an extremely stressful profession and people who have suffered with depression in the past often struggle to cope with the demands of the job.

    Every day, 15,000 teachers call in sick (approximately 1 in 30 of our workforce). DCSF (conveniently and deliberately) do not collect figures about the reasons for absence but I promise well over 50% of all illness is stress-related.
    I absolutely agree that teaching is stressful. Having taught for a year and a half as an EFL teacher, I have seen that, and I would imagine that a secondary school environment could be even more stressful. However, I haven't relapsed because of work, neither have I had to call in sick more than once (and that was for a vomiting bug) - on the contrary, teaching has given me a purpose and focus that wasn't there before. I suppose my advice would be to make sure that you feel able in yourself. Having been ill for so long, I can recognise that I wouldn't have been able to cope at all when I was ill. Any illness can relapse, even without a trigger, but I feel well prepared to face this new challenge.

    Depression isn't a pre-requisite for stress... I would imagine that many of those who needed to take stress-related absences had no prior depression. In the same vein, I would imagine that there were teachers who didn't take time off who had suffered previously with mental illness. Obviously, I don't have figures to back this - it's just from previous experience, friends and colleagues.
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    (Original post by Eliben)
    I absolutely agree that teaching is stressful. Having taught for a year and a half as an EFL teacher, I have seen that, and I would imagine that a secondary school environment could be even more stressful. However, I haven't relapsed because of work, neither have I had to call in sick more than once (and that was for a vomiting bug) - on the contrary, teaching has given me a purpose and focus that wasn't there before. I suppose my advice would be to make sure that you feel able in yourself. Having been ill for so long, I can recognise that I wouldn't have been able to cope at all when I was ill. Any illness can relapse, even without a trigger, but I feel well prepared to face this new challenge.

    Depression isn't a pre-requisite for stress... I would imagine that many of those who needed to take stress-related absences had no prior depression. In the same vein, I would imagine that there were teachers who didn't take time off who had suffered previously with mental illness. Obviously, I don't have figures to back this - it's just from previous experience, friends and colleagues.
    :gthumb:

    Good luck.
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    I've also got a place on the PGCE Primary course, and for various reasons, I've had to tick a lot of boxes on their OH form. I actually emailed the people at Canterbury who deal with the forms and asked them what happens, and I have also been reading the official guidlines for doctors with regard to OH.

    Unless you have some sort of schizophrenia, most mental health problems are acceptable but may require reasonable adjustments. In practice, the people at Canterbury are trying to establish whether you are able to start the course, and evenif this requires some adjustments, then that is still acceptable. They also said to me that there is a possiblility of deferring entry in order to recover if that would be considered helpful.

    As long as you are honest on the form, and get it sent off as soon as possible, chances are you will be able to start the course. It sounds like you have made lots of postitive decisions and I think that's amazing, so I have all my fingers crossed for you
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    gyakutengrrl - going to PM you
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    This was really helpful to me thank-you. It's good to know there are others in the same position as was feeling like it was just me and was feeling really worried about my health screening as are contacting my doctor for more info. Hopefully starting a maths PGCE in september at Canterbury.
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    Hi,

    I've been accepted on a PGCE course for 2010 and was similarly worried about my health check which I sent off last month. I had an issue with depression last year and had a really bad reaction to the medication which resulted in a lot of mental health professionals getting interested in me (among other things). I'm better now and not taking any medication but I've not heard anything about my health check since. I assume there's no problem with it since I've not heard anything back and the department sent off my CRB application several weeks later.

    Hope that's reassuring, I think there may be some kind of anti-discrimination legislature on this kind of thing.
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    I am also concerned. Having suffered PTSD after a car accident I had treatment. Now I am on anti depressants to cope with my mothers terminal cancer diagnosis. Its not a fix but it gives me time to come to terms with it. I love teaching and would love the career.
    If I have trouble sleeping etc I go to the doctor and ask for help - now I feel that I will be penalised for this. I am able to cope on a daily basis and indeed coped with a full time job, degree and parent but will the Uni understand that I can cope?
    Perhaps I wouldn't be so worried if I didn't want the career as much as I do.
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    (Original post by Mr M)
    Please don't think I am being unsympathetic but teaching can be an extremely stressful profession and people who have suffered with depression in the past often struggle to cope with the demands of the job.

    Every day, 15,000 teachers call in sick (approximately 1 in 30 of our workforce). DCSF (conveniently and deliberately) do not collect figures about the reasons for absence but I promise well over 50% of all illness is stress-related.
    I don't think this is a helpful post tbh. I have QTS and I have had a history of mental health problems and (early) during my career I have been off with stress, as have many of my friends who had no prior mental health problems. Teaching is very stressful, but to suggest not go in to it because you have had problems that you have dealt with or are dealing with is very black and white. I think there will always be high rates of stress related sickness in teaching but the chance of that happening to you is not a reason not to go into it. Just have your eyes open, take the support offered, be aware of your warning signs and be honest with yourself.

    Teaching is stressful, but it DOES get easier. Most of the people I know who had time off were in their NQT or RQT and they learned to manage the huge workload and pressure. You start to take it all less personally and be able to shift through all the billions of initiatives and somehow find the middle road.

    To the people worried, my advice would be. Be honest if you are not honest at the initial stages then it can come back to bite you in the bum. They cannot discriminate against you purely for having depression or a mental health problem, they look at the whole picture, of course they do have to consider the pressures of teaching and the welfare of the children. They may ask to communicate with your GP or mental health practitioner about you, but you can talk to them about what they will say. Occupational Health are there to support you and provide you with the support you need to go to work. In my NQT when I had time off and returned I was then allowed to use some of my PPA to go to a counselling appointment and Occupational Health helped me to organise that.

    I am currently off on sick for another reason, I might be off sick for a long time. It was an illness I could not have predicted, nor could I have prevented. It is much much disruptive to my class and school (I work as a job share) for me to off with this problem than it was for my class in my NQT year when I was off for a couple of weeks in the Autumn term, got support from the mental health team, re-booted myself and returned in a much better place.
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    (Original post by Miss-kay-jay)
    This was really helpful to me thank-you. It's good to know there are others in the same position as was feeling like it was just me and was feeling really worried about my health screening as are contacting my doctor for more info. Hopefully starting a maths PGCE in september at Canterbury.
    Hi!

    I think I'm going through a similar situation. How did it go for you? Are you teaching maths at the moment?

    M
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    (Original post by mandyarthur)
    Hi!

    I think I'm going through a similar situation. How did it go for you? Are you teaching maths at the moment?

    M
    You are addressing your question to someone who has not logged into TSR since July 2010.
 
 
 
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