Primary school teachers usually work in maintained/local authority (LA) schools. Qualified teacher status (QTS) (or, in Scotland, a teaching qualification (TQ)) is not strictly required to teach in independent schools although it is well regarded and gives you the flexibility to teach elsewhere. It is possible to complete the induction period satisfactorily in an independent school although they are not obliged to put teachers through an induction so this must be agreed in advance.
If you train for the lower end of the primary age range, you may also consider nursery schools, while if you train for the upper end, you may consider middle schools in the small number of areas where these exist. If you trained in Scotland, you will be able to teach in any stage of primary school education.
Some primary teachers take on supply work through an agency or arrange supply work for themselves directly with schools. Although less stable than a permanent contract, the flexibility of supply work may suit some people.
While it is theoretically possible to complete your induction year as a supply teacher, supply work may be hard for a newly qualified teacher (NQT) and it may be difficult to get suitable placements or adequate support to complete the induction period. An appointment lasting for a term or more will count towards the induction period. NQTs considering completing their induction through a supply post would be advised to ensure the head teacher will agree that they can begin induction in that post.
Once trained and experienced, some teachers look for positions overseas. Many countries expect a teacher to have qualifications gained in that country, but sometimes there are reciprocal agreements. A lot of teachers go on exchange programmes to other parts of the world, such as the USA and Australia, and some undertake voluntary work in developing countries through organisations such as Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) .
Many local authorities (LAs) operate a 'pool' system for recruitment, in which applications from NQTs are dealt with centrally rather than schools advertising vacancies individually. Others operate a database whereby potential candidates' details are forwarded to schools wishing to recruit NQTs. To find out the recruitment procedures for each LA, see teaching jobs in local authorities.
Many LAs send recruitment leaflets to universities and most have dedicated teacher recruitment websites and run open days. Although vacancies can occur at any time of the year, many schools advertise vacancies specifically targeting NQTs in May. In Scotland, most NQTs join the one-year Teacher Induction Scheme (TIS) to start their teaching careers. The majority of teachers then apply to advertised vacancies or work in supply posts.
There are a growing number of specialist recruitment agencies and websites for teaching positions, including supply work and some full-time posts, such as Supply Desk , Eteach and Randstad Education . Agencies advertise in the TES and in the local press. For more details of specialist recruitment agencies, see the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) .
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