Someone left a comment on another article on my blog yesterday that I wanted to address more in-depth with a Survival Kit of sorts to help you find a new teacher job. I posted a teaser this morning to see what kind of responses the community would come up. So far, I have read some incredible (and almost all positive) pointers.
- I’ve written a great deal about classroom management in the past here
- I’ve written about how I changed course and overcame a poor history of teaching in March of my second year of teaching
I suppose this is sort of a follow-up to The Honeymoon Is Over: What Killed My First Teaching Job And 7 Tips For Getting Your Next Job.
In that initial post from April of 2008, I outlined the things that I did when I was struggling to figure out how to get kids to be quiet and get my classroom under control. This time, we’re going to focus on some things that you can practically do to be sure you are employed when August comes, whether those changes really take effect or not.
First things first
Make sure you have your resume updated and ready to send out. I recommend having it available as a PDF to avoid any formatting differences between your computer and anyone else who may read it. You can create them for free with PDFCreator. Even if you end up not leaving your current job, it never hurts to have an updated resume on hand. Check these out for more help with crafting your resume.
Decide if you really need to leave
Sometime despair trumps our reasoning. Emotionalism isn’t the best reason to to leave a job. I can’t honestly say that it’s the worst reason, but you need to run the plan through your logical filters first. Before you decide to move on, take a look at these articles:
- When Is It Time To Relocate?
- Why I Hated Teaching During My First Two Years
- Recession 2009 And Its Impact On Teaching
- Valid Reasons Teachers Quit
Look for a job
Before you ever quit your job, it would be wise to have a new job lined up. Most job searching is done online these days, although most job openings are actually filled by people who have been recommended to the job search committee. Did you get that? Reread it if you need to.
What should become evident then, is that your interpersonal skills are really more important than the information that your resume contains. The resume gets you the interview, but your interpersonal skills (interview) get you a job. Here are some articles to perhaps help with handling relationship skills somewhat:
- 4 Ways To Effectively Deal With Important People
- 4 Tip’s For Being Respected
- Habit 3: Relationship Procedures
- Less Stress: Deepen Your Relationships With Friends
- Where Do You Want To Teach? Navigating The U.S. State Educator Certification Criteria
Find a potential job
Each state and each subject area undoubtedly has their own ways of finding and posting job openings. For music teachers in Texas, this would be the TMEA Job Vacancy Database. Even with that, there are a few other sites that a savvy job-seeker will use (TBA/TCDA/TODA, TASA, ATSSB). And that’s just for music. Most districts post their jobs on their own district websites too. The deal is, search as if your job depended on it!
Be prepared for the interview
Today, Seth posted Things to remember on a job interview. In it, he links to www.howtonailaninterview.com, a great site with 22 tips on having a great interview (complete with videos of what not to do).
I wouldn’t necessarily recommend going full out with the letter-writing, but a well-crafted thank you note goes a long way. At the bare minimum, you should make a phone follow-up to indicate that you are interested in the position. This is another opportunity to show the potential employer that you are interested in working for them.
Remember: You are not alone
Hope is an amazing thing! It always helps to know that you’re not alone. Check out these past articles and read the comments.
There is hope for you, regardless of whether you decide to quit teaching altogether or not.