Sometimes as a teacher you get to a point of insurmountable things that need to get done. Today was a prime example of how much paperwork that needs to be prepared before you can even teach a child.

Display boards need to be papered and primed, whiteboards cleaned to shine, seating plans, mark books, data sheets, photocopies, books, handouts, stationery, desk space, text books, IT check, desk tidy, literacy check, keywords display. Then we have things related to having a form: duty rota, welcome presentation PowerPoint, birthday list, pictures, notice board, checking lockers, obtain diaries and so on. This is before I have planned my lessons and though about homework.

The amount of effort that goes into the start of every year is in incredible and important. However what I do think is difficult to reconcile is that for much of the year I would argue that these data and evidence based exercises are less for the students and more for others to see. It would be wonderful to have more time to spend on lessons and sometimes I am genuinely quite shocked by how much time is required from teachers to be able to prepare fantastic lessons for all their classes every week. Today that is what I felt- a fear that I wouldn’t be able to deliver the lessons I wanted to. I’ll make it happen, but at what cost?

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