AS a newly qualified teacher, I was interested to read the experiences of a former trainee in The Sunday Post last week.
Interested, but a little bemused, because the doom, gloom and chaos described by Mark Oliver is very far from my own experience.
Mark quit the profession after just nine weeks, disillusioned by a system he believes is in turmoil and he painted a pretty bleak picture of our schools.
He described disillusioned staff struggling to make the most of limited technological resources and classroom materials.
Concerns were expressed that inclusion is not working and there are not enough resources to help teachers communicate with students with limited English.
He also voiced concerns about the Curriculum for Excellence introduced seven years ago.
Everyone has an opinion, but I have to say mine is very different after starting work at a high school in the West of Scotland this year.
My experience has been positive and optimistic. In the main I have found passionate, dedicated teachers who want to do their very best for their pupils.
For starters, if I had a pupil in my classroom who was disengaged, I would do something about it. I would speak to other teachers and find out if they had any strategies that were working for them.
I would also gradually build a relationship with the pupil and do my best to take a step forward in terms of the individual’s needs on a daily basis.
It is not easy to have a pupil in the classroom who speaks little or no English. However, we now have the power of technology as a resource to help us do our best to ensure these pupils are included in lessons.
In my experience the Curriculum for Excellence places an emphasis on learner independence and offers more flexibility within education.
Sure, teachers experience a continuous change in the education system and this can lead some to becoming cynical.
Every job has its frustrations, but it is sometimes too easy to forget why we wanted to join the profession in the first place.
As a teacher I want to give my pupils the best chance to be successful and opportunities to learn from their mistakes.
They’re the priority.
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