I’d often toyed with the idea of teaching, but was warned off by a lot of people who said the training was too punishing. I finally decided to have a go when I saw my own children at school. I have seen them flourish with good teachers and struggle with the not so good.
I used to be a civil servant and worked at the Ministry of Defence, where I undertook a number of roles. In terms of transferable skills, the most useful thing has been the ability to work to very tight deadlines and understanding the importance of working in a team. I know these sound like clichés, but it is true. There is so much pressure in a school, and more work than I have ever seen. Standing in a classroom teaching is just a fraction of what goes on.
I chose the School Direct route because I wanted to get into the classroom as quickly as possible. I also wanted to train with Ark, as I was really impressed with them. I liked the level of support they were offering and their ethos really chimed with me.
To others considering a career in teaching I would say; it is as tiring as everyone warns you it will be, I have never been so tired. However, already there have been so many rewards; great colleagues, new skills learnt, using my degree subject directly after all these years and finding I still love it and, of course, the students.
The overarching benefit of the job is spending time with the students, who are funny, loving, exasperating and unpredictable. This time last year I was a woman of leisure, looking after my teenage children and walking my dog in Richmond Park. And I’m now really good at bottle flipping, dabbing and the mannequin challenge. Not things I thought I’d say at 52 – how things have changed!
Want to follow in Vicky’s footsteps? Find out how you can train to teach with Ark Teacher Training.