A recruitment drive has been launched to find more teachers – just weeks after unions claimed the number of teachers in Buckinghamshire could fall.
There are 100 teaching and support roles to fill, and the council has created a new website, which includes the stories of local teachers who swapped careers in the likes of banking, journalism and tourism for the classroom.
These include ex-travel agent, Kerry Mackey, who is now a primary teacher at Haydon Abbey School in Aylesbury.
She said: “You’re making a difference every day to children, you’re not just selling holidays like I was. You are changing lives. I remember learning about the Romans, the Tudors, the Ancient Greeks, World War Two. I’m still really interested in those things today, which is all down to my primary school teachers planning amazing lessons and making them memorable. I wanted to do that for children, I wanted to ignite in them the interests that my teachers ignited in me.”
Nicola Monteiro, who swapped investment banking in Australia for teaching maths at Wycombe High School, adds: “I worked in a career that was very lucrative and a lot of people wonder why on earth I would want to leave. But no matter what you’re getting paid, it doesn’t really matter. To me if I’m bored, forget it. If I’m engaged and not bored that to me is a good day. And I’m never bored in this job, never once.”
Danielle Clarke, who graduated with a degree in zoology, started off in research before working in a school as a science technician.
Now a trainee science teacher at Holmer Green Senior School, she said she loves her new job working with teenagers: “Teenagers are interesting. You get a lot of characters - some of them are lovely, some of them want a bit of laugh, some of them need a lot of help. And they’re impressionable, I think it’s a nice age to want to influence.”
The website highlights the many different routes into teaching and the financial support available, with bursaries up to £25k on offer.
Zahir Mohammed, cabinet Member for education and skills, said: “The NUT and ATL’s recent suggestion that funding cuts could mean a reduction in the number of Buckinghamshire’s teachers was based on wrong assumptions and as this new recruitment drive shows, it couldn’t be further from the truth. Buckinghamshire is investing in its teachers to ensure schools in the county remain amongst the best in the country.
“I’d encourage anyone interested in teaching in Buckinghamshire to take a look at this user-friendly website, where there’s a wealth of information on career paths into teaching, videos featuring new teachers, and of course all the details of job vacancies in the county.”
To find out more go to http://jobs.buckscc.gov.uk/teach-bucks/