Dear John: I've been a good teacher for 10 years but can't get a promotion.


I’ve been a teacher for 10 years and although I have been paid for responsibility at previous schools, I decided to go back to mainscale teaching in order to leave a job I was unhappy in. I was only at my previous school for a year and didn’t want to leave my recent job too quickly. I was hoping with my experience, I would be able start working my way back up.

However, despite taking an active role at school, good observations and students reaching or exceeding targets I’ve found very little opportunity for me. I recently missed out on a promotion, which was given to an external candidate and even when I have asked for specific training, it has not been granted. I have found my professional development has come to a standstill.

I’m starting to feel a little out of it now and am losing out professionally to considerably less experienced teachers because I’m not up to date. I know I am capable but am not really sure what to do. My HoD doesn’t want me to leave but I feel this could be the only option I have if I’m to progress. What am I entitled to from my school in terms of my professional development?



It is your career and you are perfectly entitled to want to seek promotion. If this isn’t on the cards where you are, look elsewhere. Unless your head of department can help, then they will have to put up with your departure however hard it makes it for them. Sadly, there is no guarantee of CPD funding although there are rumours of an allowance being considered by one of the political parties for the next election campaign. Start reading the TES and searching the web site.

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