Nifty at 50

"No! No! No", to paraphrase Meg Ryan in When Harry Met Sally - no more articles about burnt-out, dried-up, past their best 50-pluses.

As much as I enjoyed reading about Vincent Meldrew and his 400 tins of Burnt Sienna (TESS, August 9), enough is enough. I am here to speak up for all those "Baby Boomers" who are still enjoying teaching and do not want a "package".

Although I started teaching 30 years ago, I am still learning. I still attend in-service courses - continuing professional development holds no fears for me - and I am currently finishing off a postgraduate diploma.

Now , I know that I am perhaps not a typical 50-plus because I have had long periods of teaching part-time while bringing up my family and only returned to full-time teaching 10 years ago.

"Well no wonder you don't want out," I hear you cry. "You haven't served your full sentence." This is very true. Perhaps if I had, I would be banging on those school gates screaming: "Let me go, package or no."

Instead, I get excited about changing into a student-centred teacher keen to get back to school to try things out - as I was during the Easter holidays.

Never mind this was more a case of SAG (in more ways than one I have to admit) - "Sad Ageing Git". But perhaps not. I do know people who have served their full sentence and still happily continue so to do.

There are also those 50-pluses who were mature entrants to the profession and who are still full of enthusiasm and keen to embrace new ideas. We are a diverse bunch and, although we may be grey of hair, we still have a lot to offer (experience for one).

Some of us are even still being appointed to promoted posts - sadly not me, since no rector has yet seen the infinite sense in that; but I'm forever the optimist.

So if you were there clutching your little Union Jack on that Royal day all those years ago, stand up and be counted. After all, she is still working and getting well paid - but that's another story.

John Lusby

Lawside Road, Dundee

Log in or register for FREE to continue reading.

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you