Teaching is one of the most rewarding and challenging careers around. However, there comes a time in life where working full time becomes either impossible or unfavourable for all sorts of reasons. This is why becoming a relief teacher is a great option to avoid getting burnt out. It is fantastic for anyone who wants a genuinely better work-life balance and for teaching mums and dads it is ideal. 

It’s also a great way to kick start a new teachers’ career and an invaluable way to gain experience in different settings. It will give you a taste of what it's all about before committing to full time employment. 

Let’s take a look at some of the top reasons why becoming a supply teacher can be one of the best decisions of your career. 

 

Flexibility 

Relief teaching allows for you to choose when you would like to work, allowing more flexibility to fit around your lifestyle outside of the classroom, such as being a part-time stay-at-home mum or dad. 

While a full-time job may guarantee more security, consistency and a regular salary, with flexibility comes more autonomy and freedom in choices. Kind of like being your own boss!  

On top of this, you aren’t subject to the same workload as a full-time teacher, so scrap planning, assessments, meetings, marking and the day-to-day teacher's admin. Relief teaching eliminates all the commitments, however it still allows you to pursue the profession of your dreams. You can even plan travel time outside of school holiday periods... bonus! 

Variety 

Relief teaching gives you the opportunities to work at various schools, as opposed to being committed to just one school and class. Meeting new people, working in different environments and types of schools can promote a more eager attitude towards teaching due to the diversity and excitement. 

Becoming a relief teacher can also provide you a vast amount of tricks and strategies that you have accumulated on your visits to different schools, such as ways of doing things, classroom activities, ideas etc.  

Retirement 

It’s hard to say goodbye to the classroom. Becoming a relief teacher is a great way to wind down your hours and also enter this new venture with years of experience under your belt which is a highly valued relief teacher trait. 

Relocation 

If you are thinking of relocating but you are unsure of the area, teaching opportunities or community life, relief teaching can give you the opportunity to experience before you move to assess the area and community. 

Test Drive 

Relief teaching has its perks, one major being that it offers users the chance to work in different schools to experience it before making the big decision – becoming a permanent teacher in a fixed role at that school.  

Return to Teaching 

When applying for any teaching jobs at any school, it is important to ensure you have up-to-date experience and are knowledgeable of current developments and initiatives in education. Spending time in the classroom as a relief teacher to refresh your skills is a great way to achieve this. 

Relief teaching allows you to return to the industry slowly, ensuring that this career path is right for you. Maybe you have trialled other jobs in different industries and feel this is the right one for you, however, you need to make sure before committing. 

Want more advice for returning to teaching? Take our Relief Teacher Association course on ‘Returning to teaching and the education world’ 

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