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Am I ‘too old’ for serious consideration?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by DFC, Feb 4, 2020.

  1. DFC

    DFC New commenter

    i am approaching mid 50’s and have been applying for primary DHT posts... but no joy!
    For the last 4 applications, I met every spec. including all the added desirables but.. no interview...
    Feedback vague... ‘there were other equally impressive applicants and you just missed out’ it was a very strong application but others just had that bit more...’etc.

    Am I being cynical thinking they just want a younger person but can’t say so for equal opp. reasons? I know I am more than qualified for the posts I have applied for - both in qualifications and experience. I am ‘bloody good at teaching’ - other people’s words not mine - but I just feel I am wasting my time and I am never going to get an interview because of my age. Don’t say they don’t know - you can work it out from the education section on an application.
    Does anyone want an over 50, DHT with a great results track record and impeccable attendance record,,, or am I just too old and not a good buy for succession planning purposes.
    Opinions sought.
    install likes this.
  2. carriecat10

    carriecat10 Established commenter Community helper

    I really feel for you as it sounds like you have all the relevant experience needed.
    One comment I have heard mentioned by a headteacher looking for a deputy is that they might not consider someone who is unlikely to be looking to move on to headship. This might put older candidates at a disadvantage perhaps. I'm not necessarily suggesting you address this in your application, but just trying to identify possible reasons why you are not being shortlisted for interview.
  3. TheOracleAtDelphi

    TheOracleAtDelphi Established commenter

    Given that you have 12 or so years until state retirement age, they are being ridiculously short-sighted in overlooking you, if it is on grounds of age. What kind of roles are you looking for? Ones with a whole-class teaching responsibility and some extra management release time, like you get in smaller primaries e.g. one form intake or something at a larger school where you wouldn't have your own class? Or anything within your area?
  4. Abitofeverything

    Abitofeverything Occasional commenter

    I wouldn't have thought it's to do with age. Keep your chin up and keep applying!
    caterpillartobutterfly and Pomza like this.
  5. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    I gained my last promotion-to Head of School-aged 55 and was by far the eldest candidate! It's a matter of finding the right opportunity. Mine was in a RI school ( despite this there were 7 other candidates there on interview day, including 2 internals) and they were looking for experience, which I could demonstrate I had!
  6. DFC

    DFC New commenter

    Thanks for taking the time to reply.
  7. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    I was in a slightly younger similar boat. I’ve followed up to see who the appointments went to...
    a teacher from the next village to the school
    a teacher who I looked round the school with (who the head was fluttering their eyelashes at)
    a very inexperienced teacher who was only thinking of doing the NPQSL (I completed it 6 years ago and was on my NPQH at this point)
    another teacher from the next village to the school
    a part-time secondary PE teacher (for a primary deputy)- great muscles/typical PE teacher...

    I think it’s more like who you know than anything or how much the head fancies you! There is always the unspoken gender issue.

    I am writing this with way too many unsuccessful job applications behind me knowing that I met and evidenced all the application criteria.
    I have an educational based job not in a school now- I never cracked the secret.

    In answer to your question, I personally don’t think you’re too old, however, I wonder if you’re so efficient, more than qualified, good at your job that heads feel you’ll be better than them. I just don’t understand why the teaching profession doesn’t chase experience any more.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
    speaker2 likes this.
  8. speaker2

    speaker2 New commenter

    I don’t think you are too old at all. With the teacher official retirement age linked to tpa now being 67, it is time for a huge rethink about way teachers are promoted into SLT roles on the basis of very limited experiences. I wonder if the young Heads are being ageist too.... I hope you do get appointed- at least you are making it to the shortlist stage though , so I wish you well.
  9. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

  10. sooooexcited

    sooooexcited Occasional commenter

    Definitely not an age thing. Ask someone involved in recruitment to pull apart your application for honest, direct feedback.

    Sometimes, Good candidates do "just miss out" for no reason other than volume of candidates.

    Good luck.
  11. speaker2

    speaker2 New commenter

    Such an awful reality nowadays. Children are missing out on having a whole load of good teachers due to cost cutting. What short sighted policies are being allowed to dictate individual lives, those of the pupils but also of the teachers . I do not hear of this happening to professionals in , for example, medicine or law.
    DexterDexter likes this.
  12. install

    install Star commenter

    In my experience teaching is an ageist job. But also on the way up it seems to be about cliques . I would keep applying.

    A slight concern for me is that you mention being 'good at teaching' - but do not reference managing and leading . Maybe push those skills more.
  13. DFC

    DFC New commenter

    Thanks again to those who have responded.

    Headteacher friend has picked apart my application and has given feedback which has been implemented. In response to install
    ‘S point, I lead a core subject across school and a key stage. I performance manage too. I also have outreach experience in two core subject areas and lead CPD both in and out of school....but still no joy!

    I will keep trying, just becoming disillusioned.
    DexterDexter and install like this.
  14. speaker2

    speaker2 New commenter

    You are not alone - there are a lot of us who have been or are in similar situations to yours...
    DexterDexter likes this.

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