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Dear Theo - Broken Hearted :-(

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by AmandaMould, Feb 23, 2012.

  1. After finishing my PGCE last summer, I struggled to find any jobs in my area (restricted in location due to having small children in school etc). I applied for a few, but was never the ideal candidate (one interview I was admonished for smiling at the children during an observed lesson!) I applied for my dream job, but didn't get invited for an interview as it wasn't in my specialised teaching area. Whilst doing my teaching placements, I'd drive past the students waiting for the school bus to drop them off at my 'dream school' and wish that was my destination too.

    I resigned myself to going back to my former post for a bit (I was a researcher before I went into teaching) until October half-term where I received a surprise 'phone call asking me if I was interested in applying for a short term post, covering sick leave. I would have said no (I wasn't interested in supply due to childcare restraints) but it was at the school I really, really wanted to work at. The 'dream job' I had previously applied for, they had kept my application from March. This school was one I knew well. Many moons ago, I had my own secondary education at a neighbouring independent school (literally, neighbours), many of my closest friends had grown up in that , many of my dearest friends had sent their own children there. So I said yes.

    I got the job (even though it was teaching an area that wasn't my speciality, but close enough) and started a part-time temporary post for one term. The school were then kind enough to extend my contract for the rest of the year, so I could begin my NQT induction. (It's a HMC school, so I'm a bit worried that my induction start may cause issue later on.) However, the powers that be had decided to re-advertise the original post that I had applied for last year, I applied, but this week was told that I didn't get the position for next year, after my contract runs out that's it. Same reason, they need specialists for teaching A'level students who'll be heading off to Oxbridge. (I'm currently only teaching up to GCSE)

    In normal circumstances, I would say, fair's fair - the end of the contract is the end of the contract, and of course a school should have the best, most experienced person for the post - but I really, really love this school. I've had a start to my teaching career that I never thought possible, I leave every evening smiling, I drive to work singing in the car (even if it's weighed down with silly amounts of marking!) The student's I've been teaching really, really enjoy my lessons and have been making huge progress (I've been getting them to assess my own performance). I've set up extra-curricular groups which students have been enjoying, joined Parent/teacher groups outside of school (and yes, I
    even get on with parents!) my observations have been noted as outstanding - but, I'm still feeling like a failure as I'm not good enough to continue in a place where I feel I belong.

    I've always struggled (not academically) when it comes to my qualifications - my dad was dying when I was taking my A'levels (and didn't get the predicted grades I wanted), my mum died when I was doing my degree (and I had my daughter too)- so although it was at a leading university, it wasn't a first (gosh, it sounds like I'm making excuses now!) but it seems like my past has finally up with me and denied me that one chance where I could land a career where I'd be happy.

    There are no other jobs in my area coming up for next year, and now I just feel broken hearted. Any advice? (I've already had flowers from students this week - however, cake would be good right now.)
  2. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Oh poor you. At least you know your students appreciate you.
    if you look under the Flowers . . . thread you should find what you've requested.

  3. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    Amanda, we can all understand just how you feel at the moment. Really sickening to have been so successful so far, and then to be losing it all.
    We really, really feel for you in this circumstance. I see that Lara has posted for you on the "Flowers" thread
    https://community.tes.co.uk/forums/p/533576/7300274.aspx#7300274 Go down to the end - it's really cute what she's found.
    Personally, I normally "give" people a big bar of cadbury's best, but here's something home-made for you instead:
    Your list of "excuses" as you call them, look to me more like a list of successes - doing well in extremely difficult circumstances. And now you have to leave (well, not quite now), but it has been full of successes at the school too. You have had, as you say:
    Many, many NQTs trying to survive, just survive, their induction year would envy you.
    Not yet, not yet - but there may be.
    I would suggest that you try (once you feel a bit stronger - don't want to weep all over a very expensively-suited shoulder) and get a meeting with the Head or Deputy, and ask them their advice. Since your teaching is outstanding, do they know any other school where there might be a vacancy and could recommend you? When you DO see a job that you are interested in, go again and ask if they know the school, could they recommend you to the Head. Ask your HoD the same thing - s/he could recommend you to a HoD that s/he knows.
    Make sure that you set up a JobAlert, and are all geared up for an application. See the advice in here:
    Application form help needed!!
    And here's some chocolate too, as long as you promise to eat it and remember all your successes, especially the successes at the school where so many people appreciate you:
    Best wishes
    TheoGriff. Member of the TES Careers Advice Service.
    I do Application and Interview one-to-ones, and also contribute to the Job Application Seminars. We look at application letters, executive summaries and interviews, with practical exercises that people really appreciate.
    I shall be doing the Win That Teaching Job seminar at 2pm on Saturday February 25th, and also the Moving into Headship or SLT seminar on Saturday 17th March.
  4. Thank you for the smile (and the cake/flowers/chocolate) I know I've had an amazing start already and should keep calm and carry on :)
  5. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Have you considered applying for jobs at international schools?
  6. That's defiantly an option (I want to do my masters in International Education) but I'm not going to plan for that until my own children are old enough (my youngest is only two).

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