Just over 4 months ago I announced my news that I would be leaving full time teaching to prioritise my self-employed work as an examiner, writer and CPD trainer. Although I am still in post for another month or so, last week marked the end of my final academic year. So time to reflect and give an update on the last few exciting and scary months.
People I have spoken to in real life will know that I have likened the decision to that of jumping out of a plane. I have never done a skydive but I know there is a gap between jumping out of the plane and the parachute opening. The first couple of months were a little like that. A decision had been made but there were certainly a few glances back in the direction of the plane particularly as a management reshuffle meant that posts I would have previously been interested in became available. I suspect it is natural when a step of faith is made to experience some doubts. Yet logically none of the reasons for the decision had changed: the TAG process and the exhaustion that came with it helped to confirm it. It's fine to stay on the plane if you want to go where the plane is going but otherwise...
Gradually things are beginning to work out. The nature of the freelance things I do mean that there is not one overall parachute that opens, but numerous mini-parachutes open, sometimes 1-2 a week and sometimes nothing for a fortnight. So far the diary includes
There is some iGCSE marking in November courtesy of one of the International exam boards
The number of training bookings with the exam board and another INSET provider has now reached double figures.
The shop on my website is now live and the number of resource packs purchased has also nudged double figures.
I am presenting at a couple of events in the Autumn term
All of this - along with my college who have been great in allowing me to do 0.4 FTE teaching, means that I will at least not fall flat on my face. There is more than enough to ensure that I don't get bored or have issues about paying the bills - at least not this year.
I am looking forward to September: I would like to develop some more resource packs perhaps on Thinking Skills, GCSE RS, or A level Philosophy. I have an idea around affordable A Level Religious Studies student webinars to help catch up work in 2021-22, and as ever there are a couple of book ideas rattling around my head.
I appreciate the support and encouragement I have had along the way. Thank you to those who have purchased resource packs, those who have given such kind feedback at INSET, those who have encouraged in real life and on social media. Above all, thank you to my family for their support and belief and for never once uttering the phrase 'Have you lost your mind?'
Enjoy the summer everyone!