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I’ll tell you what I want…

… what I really really want is to have time.

More time to spend with my students and my colleagues each day and each week so that I can make sure that I meet their needs, support their progress and build better relationships.

As the end of the school year approaches, a lot of teachers only want simple notes of thanks from their students rather than lavish gifts. To be fair I do love heartfelt, handwritten notes from students. They do mean the world, but if I bottle of wine or a box of chocolates comes my way, I haven’t been known to refuse yet!

While students and their families write kind notes to thank teachers and teachers remember why they do their jobs, there is a worrying underlying discourse undermining that positive feedback.

Teachers apparently feel less valued than they did 5 years ago. Various organisations report from various data gathering exercises that teachers are unhappy and don’t want to join or remain in the profession. This cannot be a good thing. We have a growing primary school population in England and a teacher recruitment problem. Will there be anyone to teach our children in the coming years?

So while there are some real positives to teaching and some teachers to get what they want in feedback from their students, the undercurrent, cutting to the core of our profession is that we are not happy and we don’t want to do it any more.

Hopefully, teachers will be able to recharge over the summer and keep their focus on the positives of their profession. But for the ongoing good of our students, the negative discourse about teachers needs to change.