Hi all...I was wondering if some of you who are teaching or
administrators could give me your take on getting hired at
my age (49)? I was bitten by the teaching bug late, but I
have finally found my calling. I have some teaching
experience, but will not have my certificate until Spring
of 2012. Also, I am an English teacher, so I know this
doesn't help. Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
I know of people who are older, probably in their 40s who have gotten teaching positions. It is possible to find a job at this age. But, I also know of people who are in their 50's who have been teaching for years in other areas, moved to another state and cannot find a job. One person thought that her experience in teaching would help her find a job, but she claimed that most schools are looking for younger, more energetic teachers. My response was, I'm young and I haven't found a job yet either!
So, its more of who you know than how old you are. If you know someone, though a relative or friend, then you are more likely to get a job.
I'm a late-bloomer, too. I love that I waited. I've seen that most districts like to hire experienced teachers, but I've also found that some districts cannot afford to pay an experienced teacher a good wage for a Master's. I was a little dis-heartened when five seasoned teachers w/ a Master's were "replaced", ( this includes me), with inexperienced teachers. Less to pay from a hurting budget.
I feel that I'm better prepared to teach at an older age. Maybe, I gathered a little more patience? :-) Don't be discouraged, keep trying for it. This depends on the state, too. Good luck! :-)
I started in Fall 2001 and simply had a lot of dumb luck. I was 50 years old, walked in my first day as a substitute teacher, the school needed someone to cover for this teacher (who was seriously ill but not retired), and I stayed the rest of the year (even tho I didn't complete my credential till 2003). I'm still at the same school where I started out ten years ago, never taught anywhere else.
But that was at a time when they weren't laying off teachers! The one sliver of good news if yr new to teaching now is that there are fewer people entering the profession (2003 - 90,000 people in teacher ed programs in California; 2010 - 45,000 people in teacher ed programs in California). They can only keep cutting so much. They can't leave all those kids without teachers.
I too was lucky that when I got my credential at age 42 and got a job where I was student teaching. I was bumpted from my job last year and was not able to find a job. I don't know if it was because of my age (50 now) or if the job market is just that bad. I know some schools don't want to pay the 8 years worth of experience I have. I'm a young looking energetic, atheletic person and most people don't think I look my age.
I think it is a hit or miss thing, I hope you find a job.
I came to teaching after a navy career of 10+ years. I had my MSed in 1997 in my first year teaching. I was rather taken aback at several points over the years at the level of professionalism and courtesy in this profession. It seems education depends on young and inexperienced teachers who buy in to all of the feel good, warm and fuzzy stuff that has school test scores in the toilet. Mind you (in NC on end of grade tests) 53% is considered proficient. I have also found a rather large number of career teachers who "know it all" and are immune to new ideas. In my first year teaching a career teacher told me (since I was new out of grad school I had some newer ideas) not to bother her with anything new, she just gets in her classroom and "does her own thing." Frankly, I think education is affraid of older teachers who know what the working world is really like.
I am a second career teacher andI love it. I am 60 and had no problem finding a job. I have raised my children (not out with them), I understand children, I like fresh ideas, I am dependable, and I have a sound work ethic. My district appreciates that. With that being said - you never know what will come with the financial shape our states and districts are in. I am having the time of my life!!!
I have worked with younger teachers who do not want to try something "new" (meaning a little bit of work - out of the box). They enjoy cutsie, but substance is not what they understand as yet. Some also have so much going on with their families and children that it is difficult for them to have a good attendance record. Go for it!
I also agree with the PPs. The biggest problem right now in getting hired is that the budgets in most states are slashing education funding. I think once things turn around, they will be hiring again. California is projecting that in five years there will be a huge teacher shortage.
While I raised my kids, I went back to school and earned my degree and my credential. I was hired at 40 and had no problem with my age. I found that because I had my own children, that I quickly adapted to teaching and it was a natural fit for me. At my school, there have been many teachers hired (before the budget mess) that were older as well. Good luck to you.
I've always wanted to teach but, situations in my life made it impossible to return to school to get courses needed for certification. I will with to teach and am 50 years old! I figure if I'm going to be working til I'm horizontal, I might as well be doing something I enjoy. Please let me know how you are finding the job market.
I never really thought of 40s being older, but I'm having the same problem. I was a stay at home mom for a long time, and returned to teaching at 40. I subbed for three years and taught for five in parochial schools. I needed to leave there, because I was 20 yrs older than the next oldest teacher, and it was a bad fit. I'm surprised to find it difficult to get a job based on my age. I understand not "fitting" as the older lady among kids just out of college, but I'm also facing age discrimination among my peers, where they get along well with me, and love having me around, but when it comes to hiring, they think they should go with "younger blood."
Twenty years until retirement is a long time to be unemployed.