Jobs crisis? Only if you need one

I qualified as a primary teacher in March this year via the Graduate Teacher Programme. I am a 38-year-old father of two, with considerable industrial and commercial experience. I have a high level of information and communication skills, including useful technical expertise. I am also a musician and I read, play, write and arrange music fluently.

At the time of applying for teacher training, almost everyone involved insisted that given my age, gender, experience and skills I would be snapped up for a primary teaching position as soon as I qualified.

The reality has been very different. Despite the many TES articles bemoaning teacher shortages, in my locality there are no such difficulties.Throughout the summer term I found only eight suitable vacancies; I was shortlisted only twice. On each occasion I met with a wide, experienced field of candidates (one position had more than 50 applicants) and failed to secure a job.

Having turned to supply teaching as a means of income, I am experiencing similar difficulties - there seems to be a quite adequate number of established supply teachers in the area.

Breaking into the local supply teachers' circle is proving to be an uphill struggle, despite sending letters and mailshots to all my local primary schools, visiting some of their headteachers and even setting up an internet website detailing my availability. Contacting supply agencies merely confirms that there is little work around.

I believe (as do others) that I am a good new teacher, with the potential to be a great one. If there was a teaching job out there for me, I could complete my induction year and progress with my chosen career. Instead, I am becoming increasingly disillusioned and before long will have to consider alternatives.

Imagine my frustration each time I read yet another article about teacher shortages. What teacher shortages? Clearly this is a regional, not a national, issue.

David Hendra 5 Michaelson Avenue Torrisholme Morecambe, Lancs

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