Action is needed against ageism

3rd March 2000 at 00:00
WHY are advertisers permitted to request "young, enthusiasticdynamic teachers" or, simply, "young teachers"?

It would be helpful if a definition of "young" were supplied, since one is, supposedly, as young as one feels.

A recent advertisement in The TES for teachers in Waltham Forest was apparently only for young teachers, as, in the words of the official, "we are interested in attracting as many young teachers into the borough as possible." "Older" recruits should answer individual advertisements when they appeared in The TES. <> It is true that younger teachers are cheaper to employ and may be more enthusiastic; however, many "oldies" are equally enthusiastic and have experience.

This is a serious issue of ageism and it is about time that teachers' unions, and indeed the legal system, began to take it seriously. Perhaps the European Court of Human Rights should move in, as these advertisements are offensive and discriminatory to "older" teachers.

Catherine O'Hara

(lively, alert, 50-year-old)

12 Kinglass Road

Bearsden, Glasgow

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