Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

What Keeps Me Awake at Night - Good Examples of Bad Lifestyles: Opinion

Magazine article Times Educational Supplement

What Keeps Me Awake at Night - Good Examples of Bad Lifestyles: Opinion

Article excerpt

Hey, You! Put that biscuit down, stop sipping that sugar-laden cup of coffee and listen. What I have to say is very important. Forget Ofsted. Forget phonics. I need your full attention. Teaching could be endangering your health. And your looks.

Don't dismiss me as a self-obsessed, image-conscious airhead (I may be all those things, but don't let that deter you from reading on). I was looking at one of the NQTs at my school today and remembered that she was very slim, well-presented and clear-skinned when she arrived in September. Now she has an expanding waistline, dishevelled hair and fine lines.

I'm not being mean. She is still attractive and, importantly, a fantastic teacher, but she has changed, and not for the better. Her appearance got me thinking that the teaching profession is not always conducive to a healthy lifestyle, but I needed further evidence.

I didn't have to go far ... just to the ladies' toilets. I looked in the mirror and examined my reflection. I am 30 years old, but I have dark circles under my eyes and a furrowed brow. Since I started working at this outstanding school (as recognised by Ofsted) the pressure has been on to perform.

It's not just the female staff who have been affected. A highly rigorous and scientific study (scanning the staffroom at lunchtime) informs me that the males could also do with a healthier lifestyle. Sure they play football on a Friday evening, but their good work is undone during the following hours in the pub.

Teachers rarely have an opportunity to sit down for a sustained period of time and eat. …

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