Welcome to the third instalment in a series of blogs that provide information on occupational roles that employers struggle to fill. In this article we take a look at the role of the maths teacher.
There are regional differences in the skills and occupations where employers are experiencing shortages and throughout this series we will endeavor to provide information on where the greatest demand for the occupations and skills exist geographically.
What does a maths teacher do?
Like any teacher, a maths teacher does more than simply stand in front of a class and teach students how to perform calculations, complete algebraic equations and understand trigonometry. Teachers inspire young people to learn and help them to understand the subject that they specialise in teaching.
Maths is a core subject in education and a functional use of mathematics is a requirement for life generally. The thing with maths as a subject is that it isn’t enough to have a teacher who is a brilliant mathematician themselves. They need to have the ability to share that knowledge with their students – as we all know, if you fall behind in maths, it is very hard to catch up – rather like if you miss a step in a complex calculation ironically.
Becoming a teacher can lead to a lifelong and fulfilling career where you are able, at the end of the day, year or your long career, see the very real results of your hard work in the young people who succeed. This for many people who are drawn to the profession is what makes teaching the best career for them.
Maths teachers, along with teachers of chemistry and physics are very much in demand and this is reflected in the offers available to support training for the job. While you train to become a maths teacher, you could benefit from a tax-free £25,000 bursary or a £27,500 scholarship.
How do you get a job as a maths teacher?
For all teaching posts you will need GCSEs (grade 9 – 4) in English and maths
You will need level 3 qualifications to get onto a degree programme (a blend of science, English and maths might be a good option to cover the bases.)
You will need a good degree (2:1 or above). This is a requirement of accessing a bursary or scholarship. You could study for a degree in Mathematics with Education and Qualified Teacher Status, alternatively you could study for a maths degree and then undertake a teacher training course to gain qualified teacher status (QTS). If your degree is not directly linked to the subject that you intend to teach (perhaps you have completed a degree in another STEM subject), then you could complete a subject knowledge enhancement course so as to prepare to teach at secondary level.
The great thing about wanting to become a secondary school teacher is that you can ask your own teacher about how they did it and get some advice straight from the horse’s mouth.
The skills that you need as a maths teacher
· Great subject knowledge
· The ability to inspire young people
· General IT skills for admin work and lesson preparation
· The confidence and ability to manage behaviour
Average salaries for maths teachers
Starting salaries are between £22,500 and £33,000 (more in inner London) and increase with experience to between £35,500 and £38,250 (more in inner London)
To find out more about how to get into teaching, visit www.getintoteaching.education.gov.ukSee skills shortage occupation 4