Saturday, 18 January 2014

A big week....

I've waited a long time.... nearly thirty five years, to continue the process which will open the doors to the rest of my life. In fact the process began two years ago when my good friend and much younger colleague, Liz, moved to France with her family. This gave me the opportunity to step down from my leadership and management responsibilities at school, assuming the part time role as just a teacher of Science, to replace Liz and my job advertised. I say 'just' but teaching is in fact the most important job to be done within a school. I have enjoyed it immensely, and have loved the extra contact with young people.

This year I decreased my commitment even further working all day Monday and the mornings on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. I didn't ask for this wonderful timetable it just fell that way!

So it was with sadness, but also great excitement for the future that I handed in my written notice to take early retirement from September 1st, which actually means July 18th. I didn't need to resign at this early a stage, but as the decision had been made before Christmas there didn't seem much point in prolonging the process. It also means that my headteacher can plan for the future.

I still love my job but there are so many other things I would like to experience and not be ruled by school holidays. There are places to visit, a language to learn, gardens to tame, homes to improve, preserves and cakes to be made and most of all family and friends to spend more time with.

Work, would just get in the way!


  1. We can't wait to welcome you to the world of the fully retired! It's a wonderful place peopled with the busiest folk on the planet, all wondering how they ever fit work into their schedule. If it's a leisurely pace you're after, forget it! But if you seek the pleasure and privilege of enjoying life to the full without the intrusion of paid work, you'll not be disappointed. Every day is like a holiday but it's more akin to an activity holiday than a cruise!

    1. That activity holiday is exactly what I'm looking for and I'm looking forward Tim coming with me!

      If we find the level of satisfaction you have, we'll be fortunate

  2. Many congratulations on a Great Step Forward! The time will fly. No more bolshie parents, no more Ofsted inspectors, no more Government education policy swerves, no more Govey... do your own thing! best wishes P&T

    1. Thanks.

      In my time I can honestly say that I've met very few bolshie parents.

      However in a former life/job Tim was an OFSTED inspector!!

  3. I can hear your concerns about leaving something you love, Gaynor, and vaguely recognise the tone. I left my job with much the same feeling almost four years ago. I think you know I don't regret a moment and must echo Colin and Elizabeth - you may soon wonder how you ever had time to work!
    Enjoy the rest of your time at school! Axxx
    (PS, I can see it's p***ing it down in Stafford, but it says the weather has expired in Kagoshima....)

    1. Thanks, Annie.

      Your satisfaction and enjoyment of your new life is evident. I think the bottom line is that family comes first but in some jobs it is hard to achieve. I remember times when I needed to miss discussion evenings for my own children to attend work related ones.

      As I'm still enjoying what I do it seems like the best time to move on to something new, with fantastic memories of the good bits.

      I've written before about my dismay at the level of political interference in Education, but perhaps it was ever thus. The demise of the LEA system is a backward step. With competition between schools what incentive is there for schools to spread good practice?

      However this isn't a political rant but perhaps retirement will be an opportunity to share my views on a wider stage, and to ask those tricky questions of our political masters.

    2. P.S. They certainly have weather in Kagoshima!

  4. You might miss teaching and children but you will I am sure never regret it!!!!! Best wishes for the countdown and plan well!

    1. Thanks!

      I have a post in mind based on the countdown.

  5. That picture you've chosen is great..
    I've seen a t-shirt with it on.

    Life's a journey - enjoy the ride...
    but make sure the bike is fitted with battery assist!

    The world is your oyster...
    but sometimes it is damned hard to find that pearl!!

    Good things come to those who wait...
    and then they come along in threes!!

    Tomorrow is the first day of the rest of your life...
    but tomorrow never comes! Unless you stay up after midnight!!

    It IS a wonderful world...
    so, what are you doing reading this waffle?
    Get out there and enjoy it...
    unless you believe in re-incarnation, we've only the one chance!!

    May the work days 'till the 18th of July pass quietly, calmly, enjoyably, hassle free and fast...
    may the hours inbetween be filled by what you want to do...
    and, while you may shed a tear on saying farewell to friends and colleagues, don't be sad...

    1. Thanks, Tim.

      The poster is one my daughter has on her sitting room wall. I hope she manages to live her life by the sentiments.

  6. Congratulations from us too!
    I can confirm everything already said, you will not regret it and will wonder how you ever had the time to go to work.
    When I retired last year I made very few plans, just a vague idea for a couple of new pastimes but in reality, just being able to do all the normal, boring, day to day stuff in a relaxed fashion instead of having to rush at things has been the greatest joy.

  7. Thanks, Jean and Nick.

    I've followed your journey into retirement with interest and joy for you. As you say it is the time to enjoy the simple things which has made the biggest difference in your life. Long may it continue.

    Looking forward to Ashbourne. I'll look at what I can see online.

  8. Congratulations on your decision Gaynor. When I left Education, I found another "career" by becoming an auxiliary nurse...and never looked back, only giving that up when holidays, and wanting to live in France for 6 months every year, got in the way. I haven't regretted leaving employment for one minute......there is so much to do ! I understand your nervousness though, and really admire the fact that you will be retiring from the many of us, left the classroom long before we left Education. I hope you really enjoy the next 6 months, relishing every minute of your final few months of classroom time. Fondest wishes, Jxxxxx

  9. Thanks, Janice.

    I hope the holiday is going well and that the heat isn't proving to be a problem! At least you should have 'dried out' following our soggy winter.

    At nearly 58 I'm not looking for another career, but never say never. However I'd like to do some voluntary work.

    In the classroom I get to see some awe and wonder most days. I have never come across any in a management meeting or delivering CPD!! ;0)

  10. Fiquei fã. Vou seguir.

  11. The language to learn is the difficult one! I am getting better at writing but I cannot think fast enough to open my mouth! Have a good day Diane