The Educator's PLN

The personal learning network for educators

The right teaching job can make a world of difference to your career, not to mention the impact it will allow you to make on the lives of your potential students.

 

Before you can secure the job of your dreams, you may want to identify a plan of action that will help you build a strategy that will ensure your success at securing your ideal teaching position.

 

Brainstorm

Before you begin applying to every teaching position you can find, you may want to take some time to brainstorm. This can mean listing the types of teaching jobs that you would be passionate about, listing the types of teaching jobs, activities, classes that you have taught in the past and rating them according to how you liked them.

 

Finally, you will want to look closely at the variety of positions that are available and see how your interests and experience line up.

 

Decide where you want to work

Are you interested in finding a position close to home or are you willing to relocate to secure your dream position? If your interests are very specific, you may need to cast your net wider. But if you know that you will only consider taking a position within a particular geographic area, that will cause you to re-evaluate your interests to see how they line up with the teaching jobs that are available in your chosen area. It might help to get an idea of what is currently available by searching the jobs area of an online service like Gumtree.com.au.     

 

Compare schools

When coming up with a list of positions that you would be interested in, it may help to consider the school as a whole, as well as the community it is located in. When you have a clear picture of the school, you can compare each one on your list according to this more holistic criteria. This could affect the type of position you are willing to accept. If you find that you are favoring one school and community above all the others, you may decide that you would be happy with a teaching position slightly different than you first had in mind.

 

A few things to look at when evaluating schools:

  • How important is it to you that the student population be diverse? Are your talents more suited to teaching a particular segment of the population (for example, are you teaching students English as a second language? If so, you'll want to go to an area with a larger immigrant population.)
  • What kind of teacher turnover rate does the school have? A high turnover rate can be an indication of different issues, not all of them negative. But if you notice a particularly high rate of turnover, you may want to ask a few questions to find out why. Possibly talk to teachers who have taught at the school before to get a different perspective than the one administrators will provide. 
  • Is it important for you to teach at a nationally recognized or award-winning school? If you want to be a part of a winning program from day one, that will exclude a great many schools from your search. On the other hand, if you are ambitious and want to be a part of an up and coming program or if you like the challenge of taking a struggling school and helping students achieve, that will give you a different pool of schools to choose from.

 

Your resume

Before you start sending out your resume, take the time to tailor it. Make sure it targets exactly the type of school that you want to teach for. When you send out your application and accompanying resume, be sure to send it to the school as well as to the human resources department at the main district office. Then follow up with both.

 

If you really want this job, don't wait for a phone call. Go ahead and reach out yourself. This could be the difference between securing the interview and being forgotten.

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