One of the biggest problems facing UK secondary schools is the shortage of maths, science and language teachers. At the same time, there is a colossal waste of talent as people who are reaching the end of one successful career want to do something meaningful.
Now Teach was set up in 2016 to encourage people who have already had one successful career to retrain as teachers. These people will start a movement of senior professionals redeploying their skills in the classroom and teaching the children who need it most. Now Teach exists to find them and help them become formidable teachers.
The encore opportunity needs energy, commitment and a passion for the subject combined with a belief that every child deserves a great education regardless of their background. The job also means working with colleagues who may be twenty or thirty years younger and being able to take instruction from them. Above all, the job needs excitement at the thought of starting all over again at something new at a time when less energetic people are winding down. The Now Teach program provides support and guidance through the training process and into the classroom.
In addition, once the Now Teachers have mastered some skills, their broader experience is highly valued. Now Teach see a huge part of the role is to help schools to get the most out of the older teacher. They use the Gatsby Framework to help trainees and their schools think about structured ways of supporting school improvement. Now Teachers are uniquely well-placed amongst trainees to improve schools’ work experience and career guidance programmes.