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Is the secondary teaching situation as dire as it's made out to be?



  • Hi all, sorry if this isn’t the thread for it but there are very few active ones on this topic. I’m currently applying to the PME for next year, it seems if qualified I’d be able to teach LC Economics and Politics & Society, then JC business and CSPE. Would the employment prospects for that skill set be any good? Afaik economics is a pretty niche subject but it was taught in my secondary school so I’m hopeful. Cheers!

  • JC business is big enough, most students take it. CSPE is a timetable filler generally. A new school might like the P and S. A lot depends on where you are location wise and if your willing to live in a city. There are shockingly few subs in the greater Dublin area, any qualified teacher will get hours at the moment.

    Any extra curriculars? That can swing things too, depending on the school and management

  • Thanks for the response! I’m from Dublin so would be happy enough to stay here or relocate if needed.

    I was fairly involved in debating & rugby through school and college but don’t have any formal qualifications or anything in coaching them if that would be needed

  • I wouldn't see you needing to relocate. For extra curriculars formal training is not necessary and you can always do it as you go along but it's good to show you'll be engaged in school life, and more importantly, can work on a team.

    Its not a bad time to enter teaching, the population peak is currently in primary are trickling through to secondary over the next 5 years so most schools in urban areas will be hiring.

    If your serious I'd also recommend contacting local schools to come in for a week and shadow or even cover unqualified (once you've a degree). As the year goes on schools will be more desperate as S and S runs out.

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  • Good to know! Thank you for the responses, really helpful stuff. Shadowing in schools is a great idea but I currently work full time so would struggle to get in, might have to play it by ear and try to coincide it with holidays! Thanks again

  • Is there still the limit put on the numbers of PME applicants they accept for Business ?

  • Since they have re-emerged after forty years, I will admit that a big part of my reason for going was the philosophy of the four Swedes, (well, 3 Swedes and a Norwegian) of stopping 'when it just wasn't fun anymore'.

    I'm happy enough doing some work in the Adult Education area for now. They don't threaten me or bring hammers into class.

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  • If you feel you have time job management issues in teaching these are multiplied in other jobs. While other public sector jobs do not have the same pressure at lower pay levels as you move up the ladder you will come under more pressure.

    Private sector is a much harder task master when you reach pays brackets of 40k+. In the 50-60k pay bracket most jobs expect a certain amount of outside hour cover this often can mean more than an online presence.

    WFH has made some of these jobs more manageable but previously this was not the case. People often forget if the struggle in one job structure they may find the exact same challenges in other job structures.

    I have learned over the years that time management team is a critical part of any job. More is expect of workers in most 50k + roles in most employment areas.

    One of the greatest bit of advice I ever got in my career was from a lad that used to fail at it as well. ''There is a time to lick ass, and a time to kick ass, know when to do each any any situation bring job contentment''. One other thing Is not to be around people that are negative about you job it generally feeds on not your own negative taughts. Look at the positive parts of your job not the problems. As another lad said after leaving a job we worked together for a few years'' faraway hills look green''

    Over the years I have kicked more ass than I licked. Do not fight the system use it. The system is there in any job to be used but know how to do it is the trick.

  • Yeah thanks. The problem is my failure to kick ass.

  • Any chance you'd think of primary? They're mad for subs in Dublin. Your subjects are quite niche. No principal will hire someone for CSPE as it's not an exam subject anymore. Very few schools do P&S and / or economics. We're hoping to bring politics into our school and the teachers who have similar subjects to it are lining up to teach it. We definitely won't be hiring someone else for it.

  • Just saw this on The Irish Times from last Friday. It tallies with what I've been told from management in my own school. So, as I said here ages ago, apply for everything you want as you'd be surprised at how desperate schools are:

  • Unfortunately I don’t have the LC Irish for Primary teaching so it wouldn’t be an option for me. Disheartening to hear but I did somewhat expect those subjects to be thinner on the ground than the core subjects, to be honest I was hoping the JC Business would give a leg up but I suppose every LC Economics teacher can teach it!

  • Ignore everything you read in the newspapers about teacher shortage and other such BS.

    If they were any way decent they'd realise the process is very very nuanced in teaching.

    "Crying out for subs" does not equate to subs having the pick of schools and security of tenure.

    They'll be disposed of pretty quick once the system has had their way with them.

  • Just saw a History job on a VTOS scheme on for LouthMeath ETB. It was for 4.5 hours, covering a maternity leave. Or, rather, it was a vacancy to be put on a panel where 4.5 hours per week of teaching might appear at some stage.

    The application form is 14-pages long, ten pages of which have to be filled out with specific information and examples for that specific 4.5-hour possible post. Here's the application form (E448):

    These complete pisstakers and dossers in LMETB deserve nothing but contempt for this. Ironically, Norma Foley is on RTÉ Radio 1 this minute talking about the shortage of teachers and the difficulty they have recruiting teachers. What a joke, disconnected, system bristling with disrespect and contempt for job-seeking teachers. Now, will any journalist highlight these miserable hours and these pfo application forms?

  • "Unfortunately it looks more and more and more like the least important thing you can do, the least significant contribution you can make, is show up and teach your classes"

    THIS 100%

    The absolute guilt I feel when I just want to teach my classes and not get involved in another strategic committee set up by management but actually run by their favourites.

    If I was in the position to jobshare I would do it in a heartbeat. Unfortunately I left another career to go into teaching.... I'm really questioning that now!

  • Anyone get the sense the Bull5h1t Buzzword Bingo is on the way back.

    I wonder how some brilliant teachers I had decades ago survived without "the latest and greatest thing in education is taking the world by storm". We're they all really that deficient without these teaching methods, would Socrates himself feel humbled in the presence of facilitator greatness during a JCT cluster meeting?

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  • God forbid there would be a power cut. The terror.

  • While you might think that working 40+ years on an industry is ludicrous it is what is expected in all other industries. I agree with everything else you posted. However if you think you cannot survive 50 years in any industry you must start making provisions when you are you ger to retire early.

    Gardai, nurses, prison officers now all cannot retire before 65. You can however make you own provisions. Most do not.

    Retirement in your 50"s is very demanding. You lose a lot of social contact. However early retirement means you will have less that if you work until normal retirement age. Very few are willing to accept that