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Please help. I don't know what to do.

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by muzzysmum, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. Looking for some guidance, help, support, if you wouldn't mind.
    I completed my Induction earlier this year, and am just about to complete my third short-term maternity cover since finishing my PGCE. There are no jobs in my own LEA area, and I accepted a long time ago that I shall need to move. I am a single parent in my 40s (late career change), with a small son. I'm currently applying for every job for which I am qualified (and some that I am not), which means I'm writing on average a job application every other day. My application letters are good (I've had them looked over by my current HoD, my ex-HoD and the Director of Professional Development at my school). All in all, in 3 months, I've had 3 interviews and no job offer. I always seem to be the second choice candidate. The feedback I get is that my lesson is good, the students like me, I'm professional, likeable, mature, I've clearly done my homework about the school and job, I answer well and confidently in interview (if a little long-winded), but somehow, my face doesn't fit.
    Now, the job adverts are drying up, and I am faced with the prospect of having no job in September. No job means I can't pay the mortgage, feed my child, heat my home, run my car. To say I'm panicking is an understatement. I know from last year that there is very little supply work in September/October, and there aren't even any temp jobs here currently. I'm not prepared to move for something temporary - I can't afford to. If I go to the expense of selling up and moving, then it's got to be permanent. The question is, do I sit tight and hope something comes up over the summer, or do I try to find some low-paid job in an office/shop somewhere just to make some cash, with the prospect that all this has been for nothing, and I spend the rest of my life scratching out a living as an "almost"?
    It just seems that my dreams of joining a profession which would be both fulfilling and also allow me to have a decent work-life balance with my son have, after 3 years hard work and serious sacrifices, have almost come to nought. I don't understand why I'm not able to get a job - everyone tells me I'm a good teacher, and I had a Good-Outstanding in my Performance Management observation last week. I love teaching, and I really want to do well, and I think I could make a real contribution in the right school. But I'm not getting the opportunity, and I don't understand why. I'd really appreciate any advice or support that anyone can give please.
  2. baileysonice

    baileysonice New commenter

    Hi Muzzysmum,

    Can't really give you any advice but can certainly empathise with your situation. I'm facing my 12th interview since qualifying tomorrow. I've done a term on a part-time basis towards my induction but am now on daily supply and have had some dreadful behaviour to deal with at times. I think we're looking for work at a time when there's a surplus of good candidates. I'm in my 40s too and had to combine study with family and work to qualify and I often wonder if it's been worth it (along with my outstanding student loan). Hopefully, the wind will change in our favour soon. Good luck - let's hope something good's around the corner.
  3. Well thank you for all the replies. 152 of you have (apparently) read my post, but have signally failed to respond (baileysonice excepted). I came onto this forum because I thought I'd get some support, but apparently not. I can't believe that only one person out there has some opinion on my dilemma - after all, I read some posts on here, and a lot of people seem to have opinions on everything. Some empathy, sympathy (thank you baileys) would have been nice. And yes, I'm feeling bitter and depressed. And yes, some of you will no doubt take offence at what I'm saying and slag me off. Frankly it's all I've come to expect from life right now. I was polite, I was sincere, and I was genuine. Is it too much to ask that someone might have a few words of support? Quite honestly all I feel like doing right now is curling up somewhere and letting the world go on around me. Either that or just not waking up one morning. Baileysonice, I sincerely wish you all the very best in your job search, and thank you for responding to my post.
  4. littlemissraw

    littlemissraw Occasional commenter

    I looked at your post and there wasn't a thing I knew I could say to make you feel better, so I didn't. Its like when you break up with someone and everyone give you the whole 'plenty more fish' spiel and its the last thing you want to hear... Yes its ****. I still don't know what to say... I could do the whole 'things will work out for the best' thing or 'You've had more interviews than me in a shorter time though so you must be doing something right'. Is it really make you feel any better?
    I know the feeling of just wanting to scream 'WHY WON'T SOMEBODY GIVE ME A JOB!' (and that includes weekend work, because I've applied for a hell of alot of those too with no response either) All you can do is keep at it or shift your focus. Have you look at jobs in museums? TA work? Mad Science or similar after school jobs? Is there anything you could do self employed? I've started my own business, its not easy and after today I'm peeved as one of my clients has decided not to run work I've been doing for AGES and I've lost over £300, do I complain and lose future work or shut my trap and get on with it? I tried to focus on setting up a simplified application form for all of us in this mess to make the never ending applications easier but I had less than a handful of people even bother to help me by giving feedback, also disheartening.
    Sometimes you just need a rant, I bet the majority of the people looked at your post and 100% empathised but its very hard to know what to say when the majority of us are in that same boat with you. I wish I could help but I still don't know what advice to offer... x
  5. Didn't want to read an run (although sometimes people don't reply because they don't think they have anything constructive to add).
    I'm sorry you are having a tough time of it, what subject do you teach? I just ask because this can sometimes make a difference depending on the area. All I can suggest is that you keep trying but in the meantime, try to get another job doing anything to tide you over. It may also be worth advertising yourself as a private tutor or joining an agency for one. I am a great believer that if you are in a downward spiral, you need to hit the ground running.
    It may also be worth having a chat with your GP, you sound very down.
    FC x

  6. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Oh muzzysmum, sorry you feel so let down.
    Unfortunately as littlemissraw says
    is so often the case.
    We understand so well the frustration but have no answers, so often decide not to post. May even have started and then decided it was so negative that we decided it was more helpful not to.
    Our thoughts are with you however.
  7. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    muzzysmum, the only thing I can do is to suggest that you try teaching overseas. There are only a few jobs in the UK at the moment and many teachers chasing after them, so I think that you should at least consider this option. Okay, you might not get offered a job at one of the best international schools, but at least it would be a start and better than being unemployed or filling shelves in Tesco. Have a look at the "teaching overseas" forum and this may help you to decide whether or not you want to give this a try. I have also sent you a PM.
  8. Dear Muzzysmum,

    I feel very sorry for you but have no advice for you other than get to a big city with loads of schools. Something always turns up there. I'm in. London and have taken a job at a school where behaviour is a massive issue but it's all I could get. At least I've got a job. Good luck in your search.
  9. Yes, there are many many teachers out there looking for jobs and it's a really rubbish situation. Apparently only a small fraction of those who trained this year have posts to start in Sep - because there are just TOO MANY people deciding to train. I do feel sorry for you - on paper, I can see how teaching looks like a great career being both rewarding and easier than other professions to fit around a young family. However, trying to get a break in teaching these days unfortunately means lots of sacrifices, such as long communtes, or upping sticks and moving. It sounds like you might not be able to, but what you ideally do now is move to a different part of the country (i.e. London, although it's still tough there) or like another poster suggested, go abroad. It is very unlikely that anything will be advertised after this week for a Sep start.

    There: I posted! Sorry it was nothing very positive to say! But all the best.
  10. Thank you all, and I really mean that. As you say, sometimes you just want a rant, and I've been feeling pretty low recently. When you work so hard for something, and you don't get the rewards, you wonder why you bothered, and especially when you feel you can't support your child and give it the start in life it deserves.
    However, I'm going to try for some overseas posts, and get some experience (in more ways than one) that way, and make my own opportunities, because there are clearly none in the UK at the moment.
    Thank you all for listening, and for your sympathy - sometimes it's just good to get the view of someone who's not involved!
  11. My advice to you is apply for all posts even if they're not permanent. Every single job I have applied for and been lucky enough to get has been temporary and yes, every single job that I have had has then become permanent. Lots of schools only advertise temporary jobs because they just want to check you are the right person (not going to take the P by turning up late, long term sick etc). Seriously, dont let those temporary contracts put you off xx
    p.s. when I first qualified, my first role was 1 term, temporary, part term, mat cover and I ended up working for that school for 4 years in a TLR role! Good luck
  12. if your happy to go abroad then do it! i would if i could but i have commitments and circumstances that mean i cant even move within england. great money, experience and they are calling out for british trained teachers all over the world!
    try not to be too harsh on the TES members, people on this forum are all in similar possitions of mortgage, bills and no job for september. i also have to provide for my partner and cats (they eat a lot!) and im at a point where im slightly delerious! (i passed the ahhhh ****! stage about a month ago.)
    like dori says just keep swimming, whatever you have to do to make it happen!

    and if anyone has a go about my lack of capital letters i'm rebelling after writing new targets full of 'capital letters and full stops'!
  13. TediousMissD

    TediousMissD New commenter

    I think the problem is that no one really knows what to say. We are all in the same situation! I know I am, all I am getting is temp maternity contracts, and no school wants to extend those past 3 months for financial reasons I guess.

    I am looking out for myself, and I think I need to will sign on, claim benefits or move home with my mum and consider a carer change....I hear painting and decorating is well paid (£200 a day?!).

    I've got to be honest, Im really worried about my situation, I've been teaching for nearly 5 years, have loads of good experience (3 years on supply) I love what I do and Im still not getting interviews and my current position has ended prematurely.
    I think you need to speak to your current HOD and ask him to email all the HOD in the area and offer you for supply/cover or temp maternity work. This is how I landed my interview on monday.

    Good luck, and please keep us updated, some of use do definitely care!!!
  14. anon8315

    anon8315 Established commenter

    Rather than selling up and moving, would renting your home out be an option? That is the only thing I can think of as advice: like others I read and didn't know what to say x
  15. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    My wife (aka Mrs Hippo) and I left the UK in 1998 and since then we have been teaching overseas, mostly in the Middle East. Normally you will find me on the "teaching overseas" forum, but recently I have been taking a look at what teachers in the UK have been writing on other forums, such as this one. It really is pretty grim and there don't seem to be any signs that the situation is going to improve sometime soon. I just do not know how many teachers in the UK can cope with the pressures that they have at the moment.
  16. Thank you all so much for your advice and support. Rather than give up (I'm made of sterner stuff than that), I persevered, and am pleased to be able to report that I now have a permanent post, starting in September. So my little boy and I still have a roof over our heads, and I don't have to apprentice him to a chimney sweep.
    It's not the job or the school I would ever have expected, but actually it ticks a lot of boxes, and the things I thought were priorities actually appear a lot less important now.
    I guess the moral of this story is, now matter how bad it gets, no matter how black the future seems, keep trying for what you want. It may not seem like you're getting anywhere at the time, but it does work out in the end, and not always in the way you expect.
    I've been at my lowest ebb, but am so excited now. Thank you all so very much. I'm really going to enjoy my summer![​IMG]
  17. Very happy for you - I know how depressed you must have been, and it's wonderful to 'hear' the excitement and positive mood in this post. Well done! And I will remember to stay positive myself....
  18. Great news, well done!!! [​IMG]
  19. anon8315

    anon8315 Established commenter

    I really am so very pleased for you. My heart went out to you when I read your first post and I am delighted you have got yourself a job!
    Join me in a well earned glass of wine! x

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