Supply teachers are a bit like stand up comics; each day we perform to a new audience with no idea how they will respond. Supply teachers are an essential part of the education system. With National Supply Teacher Week quickly approaching, here are some reasons why we support it and what makes supply teachers great:
1) Lets be honest schools, you have no-one else! if you need a teacher, we are there! (usually with a big smile, a bag full of stickers and a few tricks up our sleeves)
2) Children always push the boundaries with supply teachers who they don’t know but we’ve got your number! Moving spaces-seen it. Prodding child next to you- caught ya. ‘We usually..’no you don’t I’ve read your school policies. Worth a try children but it wont work on us!
3) We are mega organised; we have to be! we are here, there and everywhere. Plans often change and we just go with the flow.
4) We visit different schools and see different practice. We gain fresh ideas, perspectives and resources. A school can learn from supply teachers who bring a different viewpoint.
5) Supply teachers are very flexible (not legs behind head necessarily) but we may be called at 7am and we grab our supply bags, type the postcode into sat navs and hop in our cars…not many jobs where people have to do that!
6) We get thrown into all sorts of situations and just get on with it! ‘What’s that? there’s no tennis coach and I now have to teach it in my smart skirt and wedge sandals?.. OK no problem!’
7) Supply teachers support a school. With a huge increase in long term sickness, a long term supply teacher offers that consistency that is so crucial for the children.
8) We go out of our way to help and do extra work as we know how much work class teachers have. Some of us have spent hours planning ready for Ofsted, created displays and gone on school trips, all because we care 🙂
The list could go on and on.
So next time you see a supply teacher in the staffroom, sit next to them and have a chat. If you pass them in the corridor,smile and say hello. If they are covering for your class, leave clear planning and wish them a nice day. After all, they just want to do a good job and feel appreciate.