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Teacher of English

Highgate SchoolHaringey

An inspiring and well qualified English graduate is required to teach English in this academically selective coeducational North London day school. Both experienced and newly qualified graduates are encouraged to apply for this post. There are eighteen specialist teachers in the English Department which is at the forefront in setting the highest academic standards and fostering cultural awareness in all our pupils.  Highgate has a long and distinguished literary tradition: the poets Nicholas Rowe (Laureate 1715-18) and Gerard Manley Hopkins were educated here, and John Betjeman was taught by T.S. Eliot in 1915.  We seek to emulate them by continuing to cultivate creativity and literary scholarship.  In September 2012, the Department moved into the School’s Charter Building, a new purpose-built teaching block. The Sir Martin Gilbert Library opened in September 2013.

Applicants should be specialist English Literature graduates of the highest calibre, accustomed to guiding and interacting with the most able pupils, who are also spirited and articulate.  There will be opportunities to assist with a variety of departmental activities, including a wide range of theatre and literary trips, Sixth Form extension classes and English Society events. There are also opportunities to contribute to the pastoral and co-curricular life of the school, both aspects of which are valued at Highgate, as well as an encouragement to continue one’s own professional and academic development. 

All pupils at Highgate study English Language GCSE (OCR 9-1) and English Literature IGCSE (CIE 9-1). We maintain an emphasis on the solid virtues of grammatical precision, lexical elegance, and knowledge of the big canonical texts, alongside creativity and innovation. There is also plenty of scope for exploring the newer canon and the best of contemporary writing. In addition, there is a strong focus on creative writing, with the publication of the termly Windhover magazine.

Teachers in the Department also play a prominent role in some of the partnership programmes with local schools. Meanwhile, we oversee a range of cultural events within the school including the annual Lyttelton Competition for the declamation of poetry, which attracts a large entry and diverse offerings from all age groups. English colleagues have worked with the autonomous Drama Department, including taking a number of Shakespeare productions to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in recent years. The department also runs an annual Sixth Form extension day for pupils, led by academics from a range of universities including Oxford, Cambridge and Yale.

Working at Highgate

The School has DfE- recognised arrangements in place for the Induction Year and the confirmation of NQT status and has considerable experience of and success in guiding entrants to the profession to qualified status. For all teachers new to Highgate, regardless of experience, there is a strong and supportive framework of induction to the School.

Teachers at Highgate enjoy a welcoming, comfortable and exceptionally well-resourced environment and are provided with significant assistance from a range of support staff.  Salaries are competitive.  The School pays the employer’s contribution to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme. Terms are shorter than in the maintained sector. Staff have free access to the School’s sports facilities.

Highgate is strongly committed to inclusion and is an equal opportunities employer. We aim to create a welcoming, respectful and safe environment for all members of our community, from every ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, ability/disability, religion and background.  We know that more diverse teams are stronger teams, and that the more inclusive we are, the more our staff and pupils will feel a sense of belonging and will thrive. To enable us to make any reasonable adjustments, please let us know when you submit your application whether you have any special requirements.

Highgate is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children, and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and the Disclosure and Barring Service (formerly the Criminal Records Bureau).

Tom Barfield and Odette Orlans, the Heads of English ( and ( or James Newton, the Deputy Head (Academic) ( are very happy to answer any questions.

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