Teachers' Holidays

Judging by the comments… this article has raised more than a few eyebrows… anyone know the truth of the matter… ???

We use the holidays to prepare work as well as recover from the rigours of educating other people’s children. Language teachers should go and immerse themselves in the language they teach and freshen up their general knowledge of culture. We get paid for 10 months over 12 months .
A lot of people say we have a dream job, it is a doddle, they have been to school and they know anyone can do it, and it is so well paid, all those holidays - why don’t they do it, then, instead of moaning at those who do?
An awful lot of people are very nasty about teachers, but while there may be Wackford Squeerses about, generally, the less pleasant people are about teachers, the less they have achieved educationally.


Spot on Veronique! It’s the ‘taxi driver’ curse: most people have been to school, so they feel they have an equally-informed opinion about education that makes us teachers have to put up with such comments. Very few other professions receive this kind of treatment. However, and in addition to your comments, let’s add the following: my working day does not end when the school day ends. Rarely is this the case. Preparation, marking, researching and so on fill a good proportion of my evening and, as you say, during ‘holidays’ there is some sort of professional development going on. I am now writing chapters for a text book, am giving a teacher-training workshop in a couple of weeks (during my ‘holidays’)…and then the new school year will be upon us.

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In the U.K. it is an accepted fact that no group of workers does more unpaid overtime than teachers. I second the, ‘If it’s that easy and well paid with long holidays, why isn’t everyone teaching?’ standpoint.


Oh the other comment I get is from people in the UK oohing and aahing at my short working days, saying I work from 9 to 3.30, er no, lessons start at 0755 and finish at 1800. Tough on the pupils, tough on us, and like them we have another 2 or 3 or 4 hours of work at home as well.
I left international business in Asia and went into teaching to ensure I could occasionally see my family. Teaching is tougher.

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Blimey Vero, that’s way more than 35 hours per week. How can that be legal in France?

It works out, over the year, with our fabulous long holidays :wink:
Another little nugget of dodgy attitude to employment law you may have missed is that while a medical check-up is compulsory for all employees once a year and paid for by the employer, we don’t have an occupational health visit except once in our first year of work, that is it.

Those hours are when teaching is possible, we don’t teach them all, usually only about 22, but we do marking, meetings, planning, photocopying, remedial stuff, the anti-drop-out-of-school work a social worker should be doing, careers counselling, etc etc etc
On parents’ evenings I am at school until about 2200, we start as lessons finish - that doesn’t count as hours though, just like the other stuff we do.

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Just out of interest how much (of your own) time is needed for writing end of year reports in the French system?

Nothing like as long as the half termly and termly bits of A5 I had to fill up in 11 point type in GB!! We don’t have to write as much. I probably take about 10 minutes per pupil in 2de, more in 1ere and Terminale. So multiply that by however many pupils you have, 150 or 180. And there’s all the higher education references etc as well. I am a bit of an insomniac so I often write my reports at dead of night, nothing to disturb me.

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