They were discussing why we need to be able to do difficult mental maths questions in a short space of time. It queries why there should be an automated time limit and whether this is hindering those teachers who can do mental maths but who are slightly slower at it. As such, the author's friend was denied a great job at a a great school all due to the fact that they were not fast enough at maths calculations.
I have a different problem.
No one will let me on a course to train to teach.
I have a 2:1 degree in Music with History.
I have my literacy and numeracy tests - I passed them both first time. This year you are required to pass them before embarking upon a course.
I have great rapport with the kids in schools. One visiting teacher commented that it was very obvious the children really looked to us and valued us.
I have been told by numerous teachers that I would be a good teacher and I've been told by more children that I'm a good teacher.
I was told previously that I didn't have enough experience so I went out of my way to volunteer and to get experience.
I work hard and go out of my way to help people.
I have an interest in working with children and young people which is also shown by my volunteering as a Guide leader.
I am creative and have great ideas for working with kids.
I work well in a team but am not afraid to take leadership when need be.
I have a musical background which will benefit schools.
I have previously taught KS3 music with the class teacher in the room.
I could probably carry on but I don't really want to.
This year I have had my GTTR application sent to five different places. I have interviewed at three of them. I want to work in Primary and in only one of those interviews were there any children. In addition to this they haven't been particularly forthcoming with feedback so I can build on it.
The first told me I could have feedback but then conveniently forgot to do anything about it even after asking twice. The second told me that I wasn't passionate enough about Primary and didn't have the relevant subject knowledge. This was after they had previously told me they thought I had dismissed secondary too quickly (especially after they implied that someone with a music degree can only teach secondary). Their one saving grace was that they did imply that I could actually teach and that I am employable. This third interview also said they would give feedback but they have given nothing of the sort in my email stating that regretfully they are not going to pursue my application at this stage but wish me luck for obtaining a place on a PGCE course. This was the third and final stage of the interview process - I had passed their other stages.
In addition to this I also applied to School Direct which is the new GTP and received equally unspecific feedback in my decline letter which was mostly due to the fact that I didn't have a Potential to Teach letter from a headteacher in my possession. Although I took this to them later they had already made their decision.
What really confuses me is that at the moment I work for an agency as an unqualified TA. I have done cover supervisor work and I have taught some lessons or parts of lessons. I have done two Ofsted inspections within two months in schools and one unofficial Ofsted where I was personally given excellent feedback on my work. One of my schools even wanted me to do maternity cover in English after my work in the English department even though it's not my subject. If schools have faith in me why don't others?
What I can't work out is what I'm doing wrong. Am I under a experienced, over-experienced, unsuitable, something else entirely? I just don't know. I also don't know what to do now. Do I keep fighting or do I give up and say that there's a reason for everything and I must be being called elsewhere?
Am I meant to be in school?