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Post haste

Competition for jobs will be hot in the summer, so start applying now, says Sara Bubb.

Did you start training in September? I know only five months have passed but it's time to start thinking about getting a job because unless you're a secondary science, maths, English or design and technology teacher, you're unlikely to find it easy. There are going to be more people competing for fewer jobs so you need to get in quick before the best ones get snapped up.

Some schools are already advertising specific jobs for September. Lambeth Academy in south London is a new school that opened with Year 7 and brings in another year group every year. It has already advertised in The TES for three science, three English, two maths, one PE, one ICT, one design and technology and three humanities teachers. Wow.

The flurry of job adverts will happen after the May 30 deadline for notices to be handed in but I shouldn't leave it that late. If you're a primary teacher the competition will be stiff so apply to local authority pools which most, but not all local authorities, run. But get your skates on because closing dates are imminent. Luton's deadline for applications is February 18 for interviews in early March and the recruitment strategy manager expects to have matched everyone to a vacancy by mid-May.

Most of the applications for pools are done online. Make a big effort with them as they'll potentially be seen by 30 or more schools. With the tight competition, yours needs to stand out as perfect. If they say list your qualifications in reverse order don't start with your GCSEs. Ask your course tutor and the headteacher of your most recent teaching experience school if they will be referees and find out the best way for them to be contacted. Don't leave gaps in your career history. Under the safeguarding children guidance, people will be suspicious. If you were raising children, say so.

Sara Bubb is an education consultant specialising in induction. She regularly answers questions on our forums at

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