Kick-starting a career in education is just like jumping aboard any working industry; it’s the tactics you use that are key to your success!
To understand how to get there, you first need to understand where you came from. From University I joined the corporate world, firstly in recruitment and then as a buyer. Following on from an unexpected redundancy, I really started to think seriously about teaching as a career. With this seed planted, I visited the local school, to ask, "How do I get into teaching". Following a brief conversation, I was offered a role as a trainee teacher of History and Politics on the Graduate Teacher Programme (GTP).
In the early stages, I attended the class of an established teacher. It was a different world to what I had experienced previously. His teaching style is not one which would tick many boxes in the Ofsted framework, but certainly engaged the students. Using this as a stimulus for my own practice, I was soon given my own class and I found myself standing confidently in front of groups of 30 students; it was a natural transition for me.
"...students who were engaged in a number of activities across an expansive atrium"
I was advised to look for opportunities to build my CV within a school, leading me to become Head of Cricket where I took a group of students off to Barbados in my NQT year on tour. By demonstrating motivation, organisation and determination through the extra-curricular activities, I was promoted to Head of Department in addition to Head of House.
After a very successful 11 years, I knew it was time to move on. So I found myself looking for other opportunities available to me. I found a role, as a Head of Sixth Form. This was a very exciting development for me because it was my first experience of real school leadership. To ensure I was making the right decision, before submitting the application, I visited the school to try and get a real feel for the vibe and the ethos of the school.
What I found was a group of students who were engaged in a number of activities across an expansive atrium. Immediately I said to myself that this is a school that I can see myself in. And this is a school which is really going to develop my career. So, I made the move!
The interview itself, having never had a teaching interview, was a very intimidating experience. My previous role had been given to me, purely because I knew them and they knew me. Whereas this time round, I was subjected to a full day's interview, with In-tray exercises, a lesson and an interview with the Governors in addition to a student panel.
Thanks to the preparatory work I had put in, the interview was a very positive experience. Following this, I was thrilled to be awarded the position and was ready to take advantage of the opportunities available for my next step.
About our Community Expert
Career Development Lead
Richard is a history Teacher by Training and for the last few years been head of sixth form. His specialism is leadership and career development in the classroom.