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Top marks for new ‘love of my life’ in classroom-to-cop conversion

‘I don’t ever wake up and not want to come to work’

A technology teacher has swapped the frontline “stresses” of the classroom to study for a new career – as a mid-life recruit to the police service.

And newly-qualified response officer Jason Beard has marked his new “love” 10 out of 10 for the transformation.

Life really has begun again at 40-something for the South Yorkshire officer who two years ago was “struggling” to cope as an IT teacher at a secondary school.

After 15 years in the classroom, the job had lost its lustre and he found himself being forced to quit teaching following financial difficulties at his old school.

Speaking about when he became disillusioned with teaching, he said: “I found it rewarding at first, but people don’t tell you what a stressful and demanding job it can be.

“I was struggling to cope with the pressure but sticking it out for practical reasons.

“There were days where I dreaded going into work, I’d fallen out of love with the job and it was having an impact on my mental health.

“Then to add to the stress, the school I was working at fell into financial difficulty and I was facing the grim reality of losing my job.” 

Following a difficult few months, PC Beard took voluntary redundancy and, as a special constable of 12 years, took the plunge and applied to be a regular officer.

He recently completed his probation period with the force and is now a fully-fledged response officer – “grateful for the chance to wear this uniform” – patrolling the Woodseats beat.
PC Beard, 42, says he can’t wait to get out of bed in the morning, adding: “I don’t ever wake up and not want to come to work”.

He said: “Yes there’s paperwork and files, and it feels like we get little thanks sometimes, but it’s a huge privilege and honour to do this job.

“The satisfaction of being able to help people in their most desperate of times makes it all worthwhile.

“I am a happier and better person since I’ve been doing this job, which is much more important than the money in my pocket.”

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