“I tried working part-time,” explains Dr Bell, “but by the time I had one child in nursery and another starting school, the logistics of the morning run just became too much. Leaving teaching to focus on my family made sense.”
But when Abigail was told last year that a nearby academy was in need of a physics teacher, she decided to reconsider her options.
“A friend encouraged me to go to visit Hatton. I wasn’t really that interested in a job right away, but I went to look around out of curiosity,” she recalls. “I was so impressed with the pupils and staff that I met, that I agreed to start working there on the spot!”
Physics teachers are currently in demand and some schools are able to accommodate a tailored timetable for those who want to return to the professions, but need to plan their hours around family commitments.
“Hatton was brilliant about making my working hours flexible to begin with, so that I was able to do the school run and just come in to teach the physics lessons,” Abigail says.
Thanks to this understanding, Abigail knows that she can make a real impact at Hatton without being overwhelmed.
“Physics teachers are in more demand than ever. There are plenty of schools out there with a need for physics specialist teachers, so I feel like I am really making a difference on a daily basis.”
She has also been able to rapidly advance her career in a short space of time.
“In less than a year, I became a Lead practitioner. I get to mentor PGCSE and NQT students, as well as other colleagues. Leading Physics has allowed me to develop the subject within the school, taking a group of pupils to the particle accelerator in CERN, Switzerland. I am very busy with my new full-time role but enjoying every minute of it.”