Increase in teaching applications

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A recent Hays Education survey has shown that more than a fifth of teachers believe the increase in teaching applications is positive, because the so-called ‘credit crunch teachers’ are bringing new skills and experience with them.

However, current teachers have also questioned their motives and 33 per cent are concerned that they don’t realise how difficult teaching is and won’t stick with their newfound careers when the economy picks up.

Martyn Best, managing director of Hays Education, said: “Interest in teaching jobs has increased during the recession. Naturally, people are looking for the added job security, but they are also taking stock and assessing what they really want from a career – particularly if they have been made redundant and feel let down by their previous employer.”

The Government has recently attempted to attract redundant workers into teaching by offering fastrack PGCE courses. The incentives also include golden handshakes to those chosing to teach science or maths.

The vast majority of respondents (84 per cent) believed that recruiting teachers from a wider cross section of backgrounds – including commerce – would benefit the teaching profession. Interestingly, it also seems the tide is turning against some of the common misconceptions of teaching with 59 per cent of teachers stating that they were happy with their work-life balance.

Martyn Best said: “Our advice is to contact your local school and get some practical experience. See how schools have progressed and find out whether the reality of a career in the classroom would suit you. Then take a PGCE course and explore which side of teaching you prefer. A positive attitude, good communication skills and patience were rated most highly by current teachers. Many people will have learned these skills in the private sector and once they have the relevant qualifications will find that teaching is a career they can excel in.”

Professional Development Today