Want to quit teaching? I would kill for your job

23rd May 2014 at 01:00

I am a modern languages teacher of many years' experience and was a deputy headteacher for 14 years. My career has been full of fun and success in the classroom. I took pleasure in developing many young teachers and supported the implementation of new and effective initiatives in the schools that I worked in. Then, for family reasons, I moved away from Scotland, back to England.

I have always been confident in my teaching skills, management, approachability and empathetic nature. I therefore believed that finding a job would be easy. I thought my CV spoke for itself - I am qualified for headship, intelligent and love working in schools. I know that younger teachers are cheaper and more ICT-savvy, but I am not cynical: I also thought that my experience would be an asset to schools. Apparently this is not the case.

Nearly three years later, I find that state schools rarely even want to interview me and independent schools are closed shops. I have come close (I made it down to the last two on a couple of occasions, apparently) but not close enough to get back to what I love doing.

So when I read about the droves of people leaving the profession, I can't help wondering what I am missing. Or rather, what they are missing. Could things have got so much worse in three years that the profession is no longer the one I remember?

All I know is that I love working with young people and, despite the problems, I really want to get back to the job that I adore. But although I have so much to contribute, I cannot find a way back into the system. It appears that I have been consigned to the scrapheap. Is it my age? Am I over the hill at 50? It certainly isn't a matter of ability, as I have never had this problem before in my career.

So remember, all you fortunate people in schools, I would trade with you any day. It's the only job I would ever want to do.

The writer is a teacher looking for work in England

Tell us what keeps you awake at night

Email jon.severs@tes.co.uk

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now