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Secondary school teacher: Employers and vacancy sources

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Most secondary school teachers work in maintained or local education authority (LEA) schools. Qualified teacher status (QTS) is usually required to teach in independent schools and it is now possible to complete the induction period satisfactorily in an independent school.

Some teachers trained in the secondary age range (11 to 18) may consider middle schools in the small number of areas where these exist, and some move into further education settings.

Some secondary teachers take on supply work through an agency or arrange supply work directly with schools. Supply work offers flexibility, which suits some people, although it is less stable than a permanent contract. While it is possible to complete your induction year as a supply teacher, supply work can be hard for a newly qualified teacher (NQT) and it may be difficult to get suitable placements or adequate support to complete your induction period.

Once trained and experienced, some teachers look for positions overseas. Many countries expect a teacher to have qualifications gained in that country, but it is sometimes possible to negotiate terms. Opportunities are available through international schools and in schools for the families of the armed forces.

Some teachers go on exchange programmes to other parts of the world, and some do voluntary work in developing countries through organisations such as Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO) .

Sources of vacancies

There are increasing numbers of specialist teaching recruitment agencies that deal with supply work and some full-time posts, such as:

Agencies also advertise in the TES and the local press. Many LAs send recruitment leaflets to universities and most have useful recruitment websites. Vacancies may occur at any time, but most are advertised in May, when teachers not returning in September hand in their notice.

Get more tips on how to find a job, create a successful CV and cover letter, and prepare for interviews.

Written by AGCAS editors
October 2014

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