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    Hi all,

    I’m having a mid-term existential crisis.

    I’m 22 and starter my SCITT PGCE straight out of university, with little experience of full-time work. I have a young family (4 and 2 yo), and they are relying on me as the breadwinner.

    However.. I am barely managing to cope, if at all and am seriously considering quitting now. The past term has involved 5.30 starts every day to be in school by 7.50 for the school day to begin at 8.15. My lesson plans are taking me 3 hours or more as I plan my explanations, delivery, tasks etc. If I leave school at 4.30, I’m home by 6 and after dinner and getting the kids to bed it’s 20:00 and I’m no longer able to concentrate on anything. I have a presentation due next Friday which I’ve barely had time to prepare for, and I’m worried I haven’t followed the brief, and I’m teaching 6 lessons next week. I’ve been feeling physically sick with worry and stress, and when it comes to sacrificing things from my schedule, I can’t help but put my health and family first, which leads me to worry more as I neglect the work..

    I’m not sure if it’s the right time in my life to be doing my teacher training, but I don’t know how to approach my partner with this, as she’s been so supportive of me getting through uni and getting into the teacher training, she’ll resent me if I drop out of what was the end goal of the 4 years of stress. What do I do??
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    (Original post by Mr. May)
    Hi all,

    I’m having a mid-term existential crisis.

    I’m 22 and starter my SCITT PGCE straight out of university, with little experience of full-time work. I have a young family (4 and 2 yo), and they are relying on me as the breadwinner.

    However.. I am barely managing to cope, if at all and am seriously considering quitting now. The past term has involved 5.30 starts every day to be in school by 7.50 for the school day to begin at 8.15. My lesson plans are taking me 3 hours or more as I plan my explanations, delivery, tasks etc. If I leave school at 4.30, I’m home by 6 and after dinner and getting the kids to bed it’s 20:00 and I’m no longer able to concentrate on anything. I have a presentation due next Friday which I’ve barely had time to prepare for, and I’m worried I haven’t followed the brief, and I’m teaching 6 lessons next week. I’ve been feeling physically sick with worry and stress, and when it comes to sacrificing things from my schedule, I can’t help but put my health and family first, which leads me to worry more as I neglect the work..

    I’m not sure if it’s the right time in my life to be doing my teacher training, but I don’t know how to approach my partner with this, as she’s been so supportive of me getting through uni and getting into the teacher training, she’ll resent me if I drop out of what was the end goal of the 4 years of stress. What do I do??
    Your travel time seems significant - could you move to a SCITT nearer home? Teaching is a 'full-on' job and lesson planning will take you longer when you are trining.
    It's half-term now - could you set aside some time to prepare for the presentation? If you want to PM me then I'll try to help.

    You need to talk to your partner and maybe try to negotiate 'work time' some nights of the week - that's what many teachers do.
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    Hi,I am 21 and having the exact same problem!! Its kind of relieving to know i'm no the only one feeling physically sick everyday from the stress of a SCITT, and I don't even have children to support, so you've done really well to manage all of this so far!I've been feeling so lost not knowing what to do, but all i know is I'm not happy, and I'm so stressed and not sleeping, its taking me hours to plan lessons too and i have hardly had any time to look at my PGCE assignment. This has lead me to decide that I'm going to quit, its such a difficult decision I don't want to be seen as weak or failing and i don't want to let anyone down, but if i'm struggling now with 5 lessons a week then I think i'm only going to end up burning out or having a even bigger melt down when the work load doubles and triples!Everyone around me can see how stressed I am and I can see its worrying them, I'm sure your partner will be understanding and still support you and your decision, you are right to put your health first, you are much better help to your family if you're in a good place and happy! You've been to uni so you've got good qualifications I am sure you'll quickly find a job, even if its a temporary Christmas job at the moment while you decide what career path to take. Its such a difficult decision and its a horrible feeling not knowing what to do but if you're really not happy and have a constant sick feeling as i do, do whats best for you, because its best for your family for you to be happy and healthy, rather than making yourself ill carrying on. Just tell her how you feel, you've tried and pushed yourself through 7 weeks which although doesn't feel like much it is, and its an achievement to get that far, but its not a failure to realise its the wrong decision. Just look for your back up plan.I hope this helps a bit!
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    (Original post by ellarose95)
    Hi,I am 21 and having the exact same problem!! Its kind of relieving to know i'm no the only one feeling physically sick everyday from the stress of a SCITT, and I don't even have children to support, so you've done really well to manage all of this so far!I've been feeling so lost not knowing what to do, but all i know is I'm not happy, and I'm so stressed and not sleeping, its taking me hours to plan lessons too and i have hardly had any time to look at my PGCE assignment. This has lead me to decide that I'm going to quit, its such a difficult decision I don't want to be seen as weak or failing and i don't want to let anyone down, but if i'm struggling now with 5 lessons a week then I think i'm only going to end up burning out or having a even bigger melt down when the work load doubles and triples!Everyone around me can see how stressed I am and I can see its worrying them, I'm sure your partner will be understanding and still support you and your decision, you are right to put your health first, you are much better help to your family if you're in a good place and happy! You've been to uni so you've got good qualifications I am sure you'll quickly find a job, even if its a temporary Christmas job at the moment while you decide what career path to take. Its such a difficult decision and its a horrible feeling not knowing what to do but if you're really not happy and have a constant sick feeling as i do, do whats best for you, because its best for your family for you to be happy and healthy, rather than making yourself ill carrying on. Just tell her how you feel, you've tried and pushed yourself through 7 weeks which although doesn't feel like much it is, and its an achievement to get that far, but its not a failure to realise its the wrong decision. Just look for your back up plan.I hope this helps a bit!
    I’m sorry to hear your experience of SCITT hasn’t been great either! Have you actually left the course yet? What was the process of leaving like? I’ve decided I’m going to give it till Thursday to decide, as that’s when we go to central training and I can talk to the course coordinator. I know that everyone is going to try and talk me round to staying at it, but I honestly can’t see myself keeping up with the work load and I’d rather leave early on my terms with my health and family together than getting out of my depth further in, failing assignments, and being constantly down - but I can’t help feeling that it’s a mindset problem that I’m causing myself, rather than the teaching and training being the problem...
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    My goodness. That sounds horrendous. You raise a fair question about whether you should continue or quit. I have just done exactly what you have done only I did School Direct, but to all intents and purposes, it is the same thing. However, I wasn't spending 3 hours on a plan - why bother especially as it only takes 1 hour to deliver! And if you have 6 hours of lessons next week, after Christmas that will go to 11 lessons and in your final term, 15 lessons! Your first job will see 18-20 hours of teaching a week! You need to find a way to reduce your planning.

    You also seem to be commuting a long way. I deliberately chose a school 15 minutes drive from home which meant I wasn't wasting loads of time travelling.

    I admire you for what you are doing. At 22 there is no way I could have done teacher training. A bit of life experience may well be a better course of action before heading in to the brutal world of teaching.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by ByEeek)
    My goodness. That sounds horrendous. You raise a fair question about whether you should continue or quit. I have just done exactly what you have done only I did School Direct, but to all intents and purposes, it is the same thing. However, I wasn't spending 3 hours on a plan - why bother especially as it only takes 1 hour to deliver! And if you have 6 hours of lessons next week, after Christmas that will go to 11 lessons and in your final term, 15 lessons! Your first job will see 18-20 hours of teaching a week! You need to find a way to reduce your planning.

    You also seem to be commuting a long way. I deliberately chose a school 15 minutes drive from home which meant I wasn't wasting loads of time travelling.

    I admire you for what you are doing. At 22 there is no way I could have done teacher training. A bit of life experience may well be a better course of action before heading in to the brutal world of teaching.

    Good luck!
    If I drove to school it would only take me 15 minutes too, but I don’t have a car so I rely on busses!

    Lesson plans vary in the time it takes me, depending on how confident I am with the subject knowledge - I’m teaching secondary science and I’m from a Biology background so some of the physics and chemistry is really tricky for me to teach.

    I tend to agree with you that perhaps a little more life experience before going into teaching might be th best idea - I can always go down the salaried school direct route later on after finding my feet in something slightly less full-on.

    Thank you for you advice.
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    Hi, I am in a very similar position to you all. I started my SCITT training in September and have spent the past month simply being criticised and spoken to like a child. I'm 30 years old and have not been spoken to in this way in a very long time. My department and mentor have not been supportive at all and it seems I'm expected to 'just know' what to do. At times I have gone to them to just ask a question and get told 'I'm sorry I really don't have time to chat'. I have been suffering from stress due to the workload which has landed me in and out of the doctors. I just can't bare to step foot back in that school as it just makes me feel miserable! I would go to the PCM but I feel like over the half term something just clicked and I no longer want to teach. I waited a long time for this opportunity but I feel like this placement has put me off completely. I am now thinking of what job prospects I have when I leave. If anyone has gone through something similar please advise.
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    (Original post by Fern87)
    Hi, I am in a very similar position to you all. I started my SCITT training in September and have spent the past month simply being criticised and spoken to like a child. I'm 30 years old and have not been spoken to in this way in a very long time. My department and mentor have not been supportive at all and it seems I'm expected to 'just know' what to do. At times I have gone to them to just ask a question and get told 'I'm sorry I really don't have time to chat'. I have been suffering from stress due to the workload which has landed me in and out of the doctors. I just can't bare to step foot back in that school as it just makes me feel miserable! I would go to the PCM but I feel like over the half term something just clicked and I no longer want to teach. I waited a long time for this opportunity but I feel like this placement has put me off completely. I am now thinking of what job prospects I have when I leave. If anyone has gone through something similar please advise.
    That doesn’t sound good! Have you spoken to them to explain how you feel about how you’re being treated? If it’s affecting your health to that extent Im not surprised you’re questioning it. However, might it be worth fighting through till your next placement, seeking help where you can, seeing as the opportunity seems to have meant a lot? <- a question I’m asking myself as well...

    I felt that dread of going back as well last night and this morning going back in, but when i actually got there I relaxed a little. Now, typing this at 20 to 6 on the bus home after a shocking lesson P1 (menstrual cycle first lesson back!) and meetings of just receiving criticism I’m questioning it again.
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    (Original post by Mr. May)
    That doesn’t sound good! Have you spoken to them to explain how you feel about how you’re being treated? If it’s affecting your health to that extent Im not surprised you’re questioning it. However, might it be worth fighting through till your next placement, seeking help where you can, seeing as the opportunity seems to have meant a lot? <- a question I’m asking myself as well...

    I felt that dread of going back as well last night and this morning going back in, but when i actually got there I relaxed a little. Now, typing this at 20 to 6 on the bus home after a shocking lesson P1 (menstrual cycle first lesson back!) and meetings of just receiving criticism I’m questioning it again.

    I feel your pain! It's a constant emotional roller coaster. I weighed out my options and I simply felt that there is no shame in quitting if my heart isn't in it. At the end of the day I would be wasting valuable time of my own and that of the children I intended on teaching. I gave it my best shot and I guess I needed to try it in order to find out that it isn't the profession for me.

    I am so happy and relieved since making the decision not to go back that I have simply packed away everything related to the damn course. I intend on withdrawing officially by the end of this week. Now I have to face the course director and show my face at school one last time to collect my belongings and return books. Oh well!

    I strongly believe this course tests your resilience and passion for teaching. Because of this you need a strong backing from your department and mentor. They really need to train mentors to be more considerate as I'm sure they were in the very same position at some point of their life. Sadly empathy cannot be taught.
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    Hi everyone. I have just read all your comments and I am currently in the same boat and felt like you all did back when you were all writing these posts but I just was in coping mode and felt like quitting was not an option. I have actually had to call in sick today as I had such bad anxiety about going back that I had panic attacks throughout the night and just couldn’t face trying to battle my anxiety to get to work this morning. My partner thinks I should quit as it is making me so unhappy and he is right! However, it’s the whole process of having to tell my employer and the head of SCITT as well! Also not to mention being unemployed and having to look for a job! I was tipped over the edge this weekend just gone when my dog was extremely unwell and I felt like I had no time to just look after him because of the mound of work to do! I know teaching isn’t for me and don’t want to continue after my SCITT year but do I wait or just quit now? Would love to know if anyone on here has quit now and there experience or anyone who is going to hold out till the end of the course?
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    Hi, I'm also thinking i should quit! I'm doing a PGCE primary distance direct course. I also have panic attacks throughout the night and wake up crying most days. I'm 44 and have 2 young children, i have been studying now for nearly 5 years as well as having to re take maths and English GCSE's. I feel done in! I haven't got it in me to leave because iv worked so hard, but i don't think i can go any further. I cant keep up with all the paperwork, I'm miserable, depressed and extremely anxious. On top of this not a single person seems to have anything positive to say regarding teaching! So why and how do people succeed in this profession? I'm getting by on doing as little as possible and just concentrate on deadlines and lesson plans. But i don't feel like i can keep this up, i feel like a complete mess.
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    Hi guys,
    I know some of these posts are a couple months old, but i hope that either way you are doing well.
    It's such a shame to hear these stories, especially with the lack of support from mentors.

    I'm applying for SCITT to start in September. Just wondered if anyone could share any insight into what the PGCE assignments (on top of SCITT) entailed, as I'm wondering if i'll be able to cope with the workload.
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    (Original post by Mr. May)
    If I drove to school it would only take me 15 minutes too, but I don’t have a car so I rely on busses!

    Lesson plans vary in the time it takes me, depending on how confident I am with the subject knowledge - I’m teaching secondary science and I’m from a Biology background so some of the physics and chemistry is really tricky for me to teach.

    I tend to agree with you that perhaps a little more life experience before going into teaching might be th best idea - I can always go down the salaried school direct route later on after finding my feet in something slightly less full-on.

    Thank you for you advice.
    How are you getting on now?

    The secondary science issue of teaching physics and chemistry is why I decided to go for a university based PGCE instead of a SCITT. The biology bursaries this year are huge, so could you reapply for a PGCE instead?

    I think the travel time is the real issue, though. That's lots of dead time, which if it were more productive would reduce your stress. Can you drive? If so, I'd take the short term financial hit of buying a cheap run around (renault clio for <£1000 for example) and use that. I bet it will make everything so much easier.

    Are you a lone parent?
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    (Original post by SarcAndSpark)
    How are you getting on now?

    The secondary science issue of teaching physics and chemistry is why I decided to go for a university based PGCE instead of a SCITT. The biology bursaries this year are huge, so could you reapply for a PGCE instead?

    I think the travel time is the real issue, though. That's lots of dead time, which if it were more productive would reduce your stress. Can you drive? If so, I'd take the short term financial hit of buying a cheap run around (renault clio for <£1000 for example) and use that. I bet it will make everything so much easier.

    Are you a lone parent?
    In the end I did buy a car, which alleviated some of the stress and wasted time (although I missed the opportunity to read a book in the mornings!).

    Eventually I decided teaching wasn’t for me, and left in early March. Since then I walked into a grad scheme and I’m not looking back!
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    (Original post by Mr. May)
    In the end I did buy a car, which alleviated some of the stress and wasted time (although I missed the opportunity to read a book in the mornings!).

    Eventually I decided teaching wasn’t for me, and left in early March. Since then I walked into a grad scheme and I’m not looking back!
    I'm glad you've found something that works for you! Hopefully the time spent on your SCITT wasn't completely wasted!

    It's so hard when you don't have much knowledge of the working world to make that sort of jump, so I'm glad it worked out for you.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by Beckybei2)
    Hi guys,
    I know some of these posts are a couple months old, but i hope that either way you are doing well.
    It's such a shame to hear these stories, especially with the lack of support from mentors.

    I'm applying for SCITT to start in September. Just wondered if anyone could share any insight into what the PGCE assignments (on top of SCITT) entailed, as I'm wondering if i'll be able to cope with the workload.
    I know where I am for SCITT you can choose whether you do the PGCE with it alongside the course or just go for QTS. This equates to an extra assignment and costs an additional few hundred pounds.
    I think it depends on your personal circumstances as to whether you will “cope” with the workload amongst other factors.
    I think life experience is a huge factor and I’ve seen many very young student teachers who are like a rabbit in headlights because they just haven’t had enough experience in the working world and in schools.
    All the best of luck with your application.
 
 
 
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