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39 and stuck in temporary contracts

Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by muddyjudiff, Sep 25, 2019.

  1. muddyjudiff

    muddyjudiff New commenter

    I left a permanent post in December 2016 - mainly for the sake of my mental health and wellbeing! No problem, I thought. I'm an experienced teacher with good references - I'll get something else soon enough.

    Three years of temporary contracts later and I'm losing the will a little bit! The last contract was eight months and turned out to be a positive experience. Despite Ofsted mentioning my Year group as being particularly strong, the three permanent posts went to NQTs.

    I believe a lot of this is down to budget and possibly my age. (Nearly 40 so not that old).

    I've been studying for my SENCO award (paid for myself) as this is something I would love to do. I have experience in special schools. I had an interview the other day and they liked me aside from the fact that I didn't have SLT experience. I don't think this is something they typically look for, though.

    I do lots of sports coaching and I work for a charity as a volunteer too.

    Any thoughts or words of encouragement?
  2. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    I also left my last permanent one then as well, made redundant and I have made the discovery that long-term supply is easily what I want. I do keep smiling and nodding whenever a school mentioned the possibility of permanent but never follow through with anything onerous (like filling in an application form).

    So can you embrace the reduced or non-existent targets as a positive? SLT won't want to bully you as you're leaving anyway and it's difficult to find a competent replacement. If the school is lousy then it's only a few months to grind it out.

    Probably not the encouragement that you were looking for but the replies that start, "If you run yourself into the ground then maybe...…." have yet to be posted.

    All the best
    muddyjudiff likes this.
  3. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    If your finances can cope with temporary contracts and you’re happy in the roles you’re doing, do you need anything more substantial?
    Will you become ill again if you get a permanent post?
    Only you know the answer for sure but I suspect that by asking on here, you’d like something more.
    Merge your senco and safeguarding knowledge together into safeguarding! There seem to be lots of organisations aside from teaching that require these kind of skills. Have a look on Indeed for a job that would suit you.
    JohnJCazorla and muddyjudiff like this.
  4. muddyjudiff

    muddyjudiff New commenter

    You make some good points - I suppose I have a bit of a sense of failure / insecurity if I'm going from contract to contract. But when I'm being more rational I know that this is pretty much the way the workplace is heading. And, yes, you're right, I had 0 observations on my 8-month contract so very little stress! (They saw me teach for literally five minutes and were never seen or heard from again! We did well with Ofsted so that says something).

    I wouldn't have said I was ill exactly in my last permanent post but it was absolutely not right for me for a myriad of reasons.

    I think I'll keep sending out the Senco applications (and similar) and try not to get too downhearted. I keep telling myself I could be a Thomas Cook employee...
  5. mrjack

    mrjack Occasional commenter

    I feel your pain, I left my last permanent role via VR ( also 2016)as I was bullied out, the school has since made the national news for bullying staff and there are legal cases in progress at this moment. Unfortunately, my union let me down badly. Anyway I am also forty-something, UPS 3 and struggling to get something. I have had one day supply so far this term and two days in July so I am on my ass.
    I am getting to the point now where I cannot continue like this and am seriously thinking about leaving teaching after 20+ years. Our experience is not valued, everything is money, you don't even need to be a qualified teacher anymore to do supply. The only requirement is a DBS and a pulse. I feel so cheated.
    muddyjudiff and DexterDexter like this.
  6. alex_teccy

    alex_teccy Lead commenter

    I was in the same boat for a while.
    I contacted schools in my area directly, and recieved many offers of employment. This was brilliant as it allowed me to keep my pensions and holiday pay, and pay spine points!
    I enjoyed working on a temp basis, it comes with lots of perks! Your not expected to work all hours god sends - I used to go home within a very reasonable hour, and the school is really appreciative of you because your helping them out! I was also able to spend more time with kids doing extra-curricular activites.
    muddyjudiff and DexterDexter like this.
  7. alex_teccy

    alex_teccy Lead commenter

    Don't go via an agency. Get schools details of the web and approach directly. You'll keep all your benfits.
    muddyjudiff likes this.
  8. mrjack

    mrjack Occasional commenter

    I haven't worked for an agency for two years. I work direct. Schools are using in house cover supervisors and even doubling up to cover lessons so there is much less volume of work available.
    muddyjudiff and alex_teccy like this.
  9. muddyjudiff

    muddyjudiff New commenter

    Thank you for replies. I never thought that contacting schools directly would work particularly well but if people have had success with this then it's worth a go.

    Interview number 3 this morning for a SENCO post. My head hurts!
    DexterDexter likes this.

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