The One About Key Working

David Benyon.

Hettie Williams.

Gwen Mayor.

Ann Maguire.

Phillip Lawrence.

They might not all be names you recognise. What they have in common is the courage they displayed in terrifying circumstances. In all except Hettie’s classroom, those decision cost them their lives.

I’m writing this on the eve of my first key worker shift at school. My situation is different to that of those teachers I’ve named. I know tomorrow I’m going to work and taking a risk. I’ll see people from outside of my own immediate family to help provide care for vulnerable children and children of key workers. There’s every chance that this will be a totally normal day and that nothing untoward will happen.

But, what if….? Am I brave enough to put my health and that of my own family on the line? If you’ve met me, you’ll know I’m not brave. I’m not a “go first”‘person. I don’t do adventure or adrenaline. I’m a worrier. I try to hide it, but right now I can’t. I’m being forced to be brave and take a risk that I’m not in control of. And it terrifies me.

Soon, there will be a new name on that list, I’m sure of it. A British teacher who went to work for key worker care and died as a result. Yet, nowhere in any glossy DfE or Teach First advert do you see the invitation to risk your life for someone else’s child. It’s not what teachers sign up for.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *