Dear John: How can I get out of a 'bad' school and get a job in a 'good' school?


I’m desperate to get out of the current school I’m in. It’s a school with serious behaviour issues in the weakest LEA in the country. We have temporary headteachers in now, which has improved things slightly but I would love to work in ‘good’ school. I feel I’m a good teacher and I’ve been praised for my behaviour management by Ofsted, and I’d love to go to a school where I can spend more time teaching and less time on behaviour management. I completed my QTS in July 2008, and the results from my students weren’t great for many reasons. I’m revamping my CV to send to some agencies. Have you any tips or advice?


You are a successful teacher. You passed your training and your induction year and gained QTS despite working in a challenging school. You have been praised by Ofsted in the key area of behaviour management. So, sell yourself on this basis, not only to agencies, but also to schools advertising in the TES and online.

A school will not blame you for the results after one year; most often the problems will lie further back in those children’s education. Don’t let this affect your self-confidence.

I see no reason why you should not apply for and be appointed to a school that offers a different set of challenges to the one where you are working at present.

John Howson worked as a secondary school teacher in London for seven years before moving into teacher training and consultancy, including a brief period as a chief government advisor. John is now a recruitment analyst, visiting professor of education at Oxford Brookes University and hosts our Career Clinic where you can post questions to him.