To stay or go

23rd May 2008 at 01:00
It's decision time on where you'll be in September, says Sara Bubb
It's decision time on where you'll be in September, says Sara Bubb

How are you spending the half-term holiday? As well as writing reports, you may be thinking about where you want to be working in September. You need to hand in your notice by May 31 if you don't want to be in your school next term.

Think carefully about this: the grass isn't always greener. Next year will be so much easier if you stay in the same place. Children, parents and staff will treat you as an experienced teacher and you'll command more respect without having to bust a gut. You'll have more success in applying for promotion after two or three years when you've proved yourself.

Once heads know who's going, they might turn temporary contracts into permanent ones. If you're on a temporary or one-year contract, find out what's happening and whether you'll have to go through any application and interview process again.

If you're looking for jobs, prepare to be writing applications in June. Look at The TES as well as local authority and individual school websites for vacancy bulletins and make the most of the school grapevine.

If your contract is due to finish in the summer there's technically no need to hand in your notice, but it's a good idea to remind the head that you won't be around in September by thanking them for your time in the school, verbally or in writing.

It's easy for heads to forget that you're temporary and assume that you'll be around - you don't want to give them a nasty shock at the start of the new school year, do you?

Sara Bubb is an expert on induction and lectures at the Institute of Education in London.

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