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How do I make myself more employable?

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by impossibility, Sep 28, 2015.

  1. impossibility

    impossibility New commenter

    I long for the day when I don't have to turn to this forum! Some users may recognise my username from around, and I've got a job yet here I am.

    I have a part time job teaching A-Level Politics on a one year contract, hourly paid. Now that I have gotten to know the college a little bit more, I am becoming increasingly worried that I won't be kept on in a year; not because I'm no good, more because I can tell that my position was only created for a slight increase in demand, and I know that next academic year there are plenty of staff who could take over teaching Politics. I know it seems early to worry about next year, but the thought of being jobless again next September makes me so anxious. It makes me even more sad because I love the college and I love the job. I love teaching Politics. I never thought I could enjoy a job so much. It is just the insecurity getting me down.

    Politics jobs are scarce. I know that if I end up jobless again then I will not be in the most employable position, and it is not like there is an abundance of Politics jobs to apply for. I worry about my future and what I would teach.

    Because I'm trying to think about it early, I have all of the year to try and do something to make myself more employable, I just don't know what. An MEd? An MA? Any kind of study? Any kind of work experience? I have no idea. Is there anything that could improve my position?
  2. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    Trust me, don't waste money on a master's degree in the belief it will make you more employable - it won't, not even slightly.

    Can you teach another subject? More than one other subject? That's how to make yourself more employable.
  3. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    Yes, I remember you. Weren't you the person who left a school to teach the subject you wanted in a college?

    Reality is that you will always be vulnerable because of your subject. What other subject did you teach? Do you have a post compulsory qualification or a standard school age background?

    Realistically for me you have three options

    1) Take a job in a school (if you can get one) accepting that the reality is that job security will mean you not teaching politics

    2) Accept that you will teach hourly rate like now and look to subsidise your income in other ways (supply or non-educational work)

    3) Hope that you can secure a full time permanent job in politics (not going to be easy or even likely though)

    MM is right of course. With her experience she would know. An MA is not going to help, only push you further in debt. I think you have to carefully think where your priorities are now. Trying for the ideal job or earning a secure living... I worry your desire to be a pure politics teacher in post compulsory education will stop you doing the latter. I think the sort of job you want could see you putting your life and financial future on hold for a long time possibly.
  4. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    I remember that you stated you did not want to teach in a Secondary. If that is still the case, then you might have to accept that ad hoc hourly teaching - as Dynamo says - might be the only option, supplemented with supply work or private tutoring outside of college.
  5. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    I was once a Senior Manager (as it was then called) in a large SF College. By Large I mean over 2,000 students doing A-levels. That's a pretty big cohort.

    Yet even there, the Politics Department had only 1 FT lecturer. In the old days when they let us have classes of 12, splitting a group of 24 to make two classes.

    The colleagues above have spelled it out clearly:

    Q How do I make myself more employable?

    A By providing what an employer wants, i.e. the ability to teach to a high standard subjects for which there is a demand.

    End of story.

    If there is not a high demand in your subject, and you want to stay in that college - or get a similar job elsewhere - you need also to be able to teach something else, and show willingness to do so.

    I speak as someone who, as a HoD in a FE College, for one year taught Kitchen French. This involved for three hours a week dressing up in white clogs and kitchen whites and chopping onions, cleaning calamari and generally mucking in with menial tasks while giving all kitchen instructions from the lecturers in French to prepare the year 2 Catering students for their placements in the top London restaurants.

    Wasn't too bad - no marking or preparation, and i gained some useful knife skills.



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