The Department for Education is ramping up its efforts to persuade all professionals – including those working in marketing, data and digital – to impart their pearls of wisdom to the next generation by taking up part-time teaching roles in further education alongside their existing jobs.
With full-time, part-time and ad-hoc roles available, and no academic degree or prior teaching qualifications needed to get started, teaching in further education provides a way to develop a so-called “portfolio career” yet many skilled industry professionals do not realise they are already qualified to jump straight in.
In research launched today, the DfE has revealed that over half of all adults in England (52%) would consider developing a portfolio career and 45% of workers would do so if they had more confidence.
The DfE campaign promotes the flexibility of teaching part-time, enabling industry professionals to “change lives without changing careers” by passing on their work-based skills and knowledge to the next generation of learners in their field.
However, while many see the benefits of a portfolio career, imposter syndrome still plagues employees with nearly two-thirds of industry professionals claiming this has prevented them from taking up new opportunities.
The FE Teacher Recruitment Campaign is looking to empower industry workers to overcome these barriers by sharing the stories of industry professionals who have taken their practical ‘real world’ experience from the workplace and applied these in learning environments, giving inspiring, relevant and practical context to students.
Christian Núñez Fuentes, who teaches IT & Digital subjects at Bedford College as part of a portfolio career, commented: “I became a part-time further education teacher three years ago year alongside running my own IT business. I was nervous about what I could bring to the lessons, so lacked self-confidence. But I quickly realised it was my skills and knowledge from a career in the IT industry that made me most valuable to my students and colleagues.
“This grew my confidence over time as I could share what I had learnt over many years to inspire a new generation of students. It helped me grow as a teacher and I completed my training on the job, so I was able to start earning straight away. The benefits really outweighed my self-doubt.
“Looking at the stats released today, I can see I am not alone in my imposter syndrome – often our biggest critics are ourselves. However, I found that sharing what I already knew all while learning a new skill was a great way to improve my confidence and develop my career path.”
The DfE campaign follows the publication of separate research which highlighted fresh evidence that young people are being underprepared for the UK’s growing digital jobs market.
According to a study by The&Partnership, carried out by YouGov, nearly nine out of ten (85%) young people feel they have not learned workplace skills for digital jobs such as computer office skills, knowledge of tech platforms, computer coding, financial skills, and employability skills, and wish they had a chance to learn it in school.
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