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Charity looking for experienced workers to quit jobs and go back to school

Education charity Now Teach is looking for 150 people in Greater Birmingham with significant experience to apply to become teachers. Following a pilot group in the city last year, Now Teach is looking to recruit experienced people to change career and train and teach in local schools, shaping the workforce of tomorrow.

The Birmingham Economic Review, published last month by the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, shows that Birmingham has a skills deficit which ‘significantly constrains Birmingham’s growth potential’. Quality education for children in Birmingham is vital in ensuring a bright future for the city. Now Teach recruits talented people to bring their experience in to the classroom to bridge this gap.

The education charity Now Teach was co-founded by a former journalist, Lucy Kellaway, who at the age of 58 gave up her job at the Financial Times to retrain as a maths teacher.

Lucy Kellaway said, “I decided to become a teacher at 58 because I realised I wasn’t getting any better at my job. I setup Now Teach because there wasn’t a straightforward way for experienced career-changers like me to get into teaching. Four years later, we’ve recruited over 200 people to retrain. That’s over 1,800 years of experience.

“We’re looking for people with a desire to teach young people who have significant experience at work. You’ve seen something of life and you want to share that with young people.”

Wayne Smith, who moved to Birmingham after living abroad and is training as a Chemistry teacher at Park Hall Academy in Castle Bromwich, said: “I came to the UK when I was 13 after being born in Kolkata. I had the privilege of great schooling and for many years I worked in IT but eventually decided I needed more and began planning to become a teacher.

“Finding out about Now Teach was really inspiring. While other people my age are preparing to retire, I’m excited and energised about a new career. The training is challenging but I really want to make a difference and make my experience count.”

Now Teach is actively seeking successful people, from any profession, who might be interested in teaching – particularly subjects where there is a shortage: maths, sciences, computing and languages.

If you are interested in changing career, come and talk to Wayne and the rest of the Now Teach team at our next Birmingham event on 20 November in central Birmingham.

To find out more about Wayne and Lucy’s stories and Now Teach’s work in Birmingham, call Lizzie Place on 07581721514 or email: elizabeth.place@nowteach.org.uk.