One of the worst things about being a teacher

When you say you want to be a teacher,  people tell you about what a great choice this is because you’ll have a job that is both rewarding and challenging,  you will work with people, and you have a lot of free time,  especially because of all the holidays.  People envy the free time you will have.  When they come to realize you’ll probably have more free days than they have,  they will start doing the math.  9 weeks!  Every year!  And the bank holidays as well!  And then they get mad at you for having chosen a  profession in teaching,  because you have so much more free time than they will ever have.  And isn’t it unfair that you also get paid more?

And they tell their children that teachers earn way too much money for basically sitting around until noon and then going home to relax. And the children pass that knowledge on to other children and soon everyone in class is wondering why you get paid that much money for the relatively little amount of actual work time.  I mean,  teachers only exist when children are in school,  right?  Lessons don’t need to be planned in advance and exams aren’t marked – a grade will just magically appear.  Honestly,  most teachers obviously have a dice at home.  Reading exams?  Why,  if you can just let the dice decide…

And it all comes down to this: my students (there are 26 of them in this particular class)  asked me today  why on earth I hadn’t already marked all the exams … … … the exams they suffered through just yesterday morning.  …

And when I told them that I hadn’t even opened one of the exercise books yet and couldn’t tell them anything about what they did right or wrong or about their grades, one of the students said: “What did I tell you: teachers do it for the money and the free time – we’ll probably get the exams back around Easter.”

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