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Lyn has recently taken part in a focus group for TES and feels that the picture being painted isn't always a true reflection. 

Has anyone seen the recent edition of the TES (22nd July) with a picture on the cover of a supposed woman teacher in a full suit of armour, helmet and all?

Well, one of the reasons I have not been blogging of late is that I have been, since January, a member of the TES focus group which means I receive a free copy each week and have to submit my thoughts on it. It has been a most interesting exercise but my constant complaint is that I don't see reflected in its pages the state of schools that I encounter every day as a supply teacher. I read lots about educational research, world-wide surveys, curriculum and pastoral initiatives of all kinds, but little of the daily battle that takes place in our classrooms. There is a 'problem page', 'Ask Tom', that features the scenarios with which I am familiar, but mostly the picture that is painted is really rosy and one wonders why so many teachers quit the profession within the first five years.

Finally, in this edition something like the truth is out. In the TES survey 36% of UK teachers find the standard of pupils' behaviour unacceptable - lower than I would have thought - but 46.6% have been threatened by a pupil and 50.9% have been reduced to tears by a pupil's behaviour. It is to be hoped, though I would not put too much money on it, that senior managers might read all this and act upon it.

Of course, we supply teachers see the worst of behaviour patterns but, because we are just drifting in and out of the picture, we are not reduced to tears. However it would be nice to have some managerial support at times or, failing that, to be issued with a suit of armour when we sign in for the day.

Lynee is a secondary teacher who is currently working in schools through Protocol Education in Bristol. We are very glad to see her back blogging with us.  

Tags: Lyn, Bristol, Secondary, supply

Category: Australian Teachers

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