I earned my teaching certification over a year ago, and at first, I was so excited to teach; now, after seeing all of the political and bureaucratic bullshit involved, the idea repulses me. Teaching summer school the past couple of years has been kind of alright because there aren't any standardized tests or government dictates involved.
'Teachers in a 'drunken brawl' on school trip to Barcelona'. That was the headline that I returned to when emerging from a detox retreat (my partner chose not to tell me the 'news' until my 'quiet time' was over to avoid any disruption to my focus on mental and emotional peace!).
Who do you want in front of your kids for over 500 hours of their formative years - a stressed, intolerant screeching banshee or a calm, compassionate and flexible human being with a sense of humour?
Teaching isn't easy, and it's getting harder as ministers and parents decide they know best, but teachers will carry on. They'll strive and sweat and do their best and they will change more lives and they'll be remembered in years to come when dreams they helped to build come true.
On Friday, HRH the Duke of York is expected to open a conference in London which will highlight what is claimed to be the "mutual respect and tolerance" enjoyed by those who live in Bahrain. We ask that he thinks again and do the right thing by withdrawing from the event.
How I hate the phrase "driving up standards". Every time I hear it, I see primary-age schoolchildren, bent low and sweating over heavy oars, struggling to propel the great ship of education towards some distant, hazy destination that their elders and betters have deemed they must aim for.
Schools, you either love them or hate them, a little bit like Marmite I guess. Some say school years are the best years of your life, some even say school reminds them of their youth. But what do you think of when you reminisce about your youth? Do you see school as a good thing or do you feel let down by your school?
The future depends on the intelligence of today's children and the only way we can ensure the next generation is not as shallow as some we witness these days, is to educate this generation that life is not about fun and what's in it for me and let's enjoy ourselves; life is beyond that.
For Nahida, education is not something to be viewed as a problem, but as part of the solution for breaking the cycle of conflict: "Educated people don't take guns," she said. "They don't destroy their country and their schools."
One of the rewards of helping to track global education over the past decade has been watching progress in getting more girls into school. But as we mark International Women's Day, I'm more conscious than ever that the glass is still not even half full: 31 million girls have never set foot inside a classroom, and half of them are unlikely ever to do so.
Dyslexia is characterised by difficultly reading, phonological (auditory) encoding problems, poor processing speed and the inability to use language skills effectively. It's also a reading disorder. Recent Professors from Durham and Yale University have suggested that Dyslexia is a Myth, that dyslexia should be abandoned as it lacks scientific clarity and educational value.
In all of my musical, equality and advisory roles, music continues to be a key tool in eradicating discrimination. In all our annual 'Educate and Celebrate' school showcases, students and teachers use music extensively through LGBT anthems, music by LGBT composers and equality songs written by our young people.
I've spoken at length about the importance of contextualised learning. As parents, we have a clear role to play in helping our children put theory into practice. It shouldn't fall solely on the shoulders of teachers. However, it still makes me question whether schools are doing enough on their side to prepare children for their futures.
Teachers work some of the longest hours of any profession with many working 50-60 hours a week. Our work is essential, our pay is not high, our pensions not gold-plated and we cannot be expected to work more hours than we already do. There comes a point when it is impossible to ignore what is happening.
Six episodes later, 16 months into teaching and although I'm still exhausted, I'm perpetually rewarded by the incredible students that I'm fortunate enough to teach and learn from. There are moments where students tell me to "go write a song about it in the bathroom", but on the whole, I'm happily rebranded as the Marilyn Gandhi-loving, red chino-donning, Inbetweener-impersonating, over-zealous, Scottish, eccentric teacher.
In Year 10, I didn't have one English teacher; I had six - a new supply teacher for each half term. I remember asking myself why it was that nobody wanted to stay at our school, but looking around me it wasn't that difficult to see why. Our school building was old and crumbling, we were oversubscribed, and classes were packed.