Dear John: I want to give up primary school teaching, what else can I do?


I have been a primary school teacher for a large number of years now with a B Ed(hons) Education (so no subject specific degree). For various reasons I am seriously considering giving this up - so any ideas what else I’m good for? I don’t even know where to begin to look. Any advice, suggestions greatfully received :)

The first thing to do is to consider your key skills. Project management, good at keeping to deadlines, splendid mutli-tasker, and excellent communicator and wonderful at display are just some attributes that spring to mind. Good at conflict resolution between people of all ages, coping with the unexpected, no criminal record, work with people of all ages and good at inspiring others to succeed. No doubt others can add more qualities.

Match these up against other careers and the options are legion, even in an economic recession. Anything requiring people skills is an obvious starting point, just put your application in stressing your skills and not just that you have been a teacher. We take these myriad attributes for granted; others aren’t always aware of them, so they need selling.

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.