No shortage of primary jobs

26th August 2005 at 01:00
I am afraid that "What a dreadful waste of talent" (TES, August 12) tells only half the story. It is true that recent recruitment and retention incentives have proved so successful that there is now considerably greater competition for vacant teaching posts, particularly at primary level.

This is, in its own right, a good thing. It is certainly healthy that headteachers can now often pick and choose between good candidates. It was not very long ago that the headlines were all about a chronic national teacher recruitment crisis.

But this is not the disaster described for newly-qualified teachers either.

Vacancies do exist across the country.

It has been widely reported that nearly 700 primary school teachers are looking for jobs. The last annual school workforce survey showed that, at the same time, there were 740 primary teacher vacancies.

The bottom line is that newly-qualified teachers are like other people seeking their first jobs in a new career. Those who can be flexible in their search, and who can show that they can deliver what schools are looking for, will find jobs most quickly.

Graham Holley

Executive director Initial Teacher Training

Teacher Training Agency

Portland House, Stag Place London SW1

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