Job Hunt Frustration, Venting & Support Thread!

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Leaborb192, Jul 7, 2016.

  1. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Groupie

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    Sep 2, 2017

    I think parents look at from the POV that if the school trusts you, they will too, unless you give them a reason not to.
    :)
     
  2. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    With all due respect, the students would be better served by a substitue teacher serving as a class monitor, kahn academy videos, assessments created by a testing company designed to produce useful data, and a small group of highly trained resource teachers for pullout based on the data.
     
  3. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    I just read an article from an Arizona newspaper that talked about how large groups of parents were showing up to schools practically carrying pitchforks because of the hiring practices.
     
  4. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    AlwaysAttend,

    I tend to be someone who works within the parameters that are set but I feel like your response - asking me if I would call if a posting said do not call - misses the point I was trying to make.

    My point was that if we should or should not apply to a position we are not qualified for really depends on our context. It is important to know how things work in your region when making the decision.

    Where I am we can get temporary (a few days to a year in length) jobs or we can get a contract job which is permanent. My first contract job was in an area that I wasn't qualified to teach in. I got the job because no one who was qualified applied for the job so the only people who were interviewed were unqualified for the subject (but qualified to teach). In my province, we often are asked to teach outside of our subject areas. It is done when both the District feel the person is capable of teaching the subject area and the teacher feels they are capable. Both sides have to agree.

    I would not agree that students are better served with a supply, khan academy and resource teachers. I actually think that if I had to choose between a teacher with strong pedagogy and weak subject knowledge or strong subject knowledge and weak pedagogy, I would always choose the teacher with strong pedagogy. I would also point out that not being qualified in a subject area doesn't necessarily mean I'm not knowledgeable or capable in the subject area. I could get my qualification for that subject. I actually only need 1 course to become qualified but I chose not to pursue it because it wasn't the subject I wanted to teach long term and the Principal was fine with that because they needed someone right away who they felt could teach kids.

    So I know nothing about NJ. Maybe in NJ everyone always teaches their subject. That isn't my reality. I've taught every subject my high school offers except science, music and tech (woodworking/metal/cooking).
     
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  5. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    Anywhere in the country, if your child needed a tutor for HS Biology, would you hire someone who had a bachelors degree in biology or a HS English teacher? Anyone who says English teacher is lying.

    If someone is willing to hire you, it doesn't make it right. Moral choices are made every day. I cannot convince someone to do the right thing because innately, humans are selfish. If enough people turned these positions down the state government would have to make drastic changes to correct the problem or probably face the federal government threatening to take over.

    I can't speak to Canada but I can speak to the fact that the US has 300 million more people and over 89% of the population of Canada is white so the teaching abilities needed are clearly different than Arizona. What I would also say is content knowledge matters and there are lots of studies to back that up.

    I'm not a fan of Alternate Route but if you gave me the choice, I'd choose them. You could genuinely set students back by teaching content incorrectly. The problem in Arizona is they don't even have enough of them because the pay is too low because the union (if it even exists) is ineffective. If I was in charge of the union, I would announce a strike and force the issues into the natural spotlight. They would be ordered back to work, but I would keep making the courts order me back once per month.

    If my entire family didn't live within 45 minutes of me, I'd investigate Charter requirements in Arizona and start a school every year where I plucked alternate route candidates from California and paid them identical wages to what they'd be making in California.

    Here is what I will say. This is a thread meant for people looking for jobs and I shouldn't be trying to convince people of what's right and what's wrong in education. For that, I'm sorry.
     
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  6. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    AlwaysAttend,

    Canada consistently does well in international standards and puts pedagogy ahead of content knowledge so I'm comfortable with our approach. I don't think it was immoral for my Principal to hire me. It would have been appreciated if you could have made your point without questioning my ethics.

    In terms of the topic of this thread, I stand by the idea that if in Leaborb's area people get hired outside of their subject area then there is nothing immoral about applying. Where I work, HR (not teachers or administrators) decides who gets an interview and if they want to interview you outside of their qualification it is because you have met their legal and ethical needs.

    I would also add that in my experience who a candidate is as a person (like the conversation we had about green/yellow/red) is far more important than the number of qualifications. My District just hired someone in a very high level position that wasn't qualified. They did this because it isn't all about the letters behind a candidate's name. They felt the person they hired was the right fit. Legally they are allowed to hire someone in the process of the qualification over someone with the qualification as long as they have provincial approval. In 5 months, the person will be qualified. The District prefers to hire the person with the "right fit" and wait on the qualification over the candidates who are qualified that they just don't see as being the right fit.

    So good luck to everyone applying to positions (irrespective of if they are or are not qualified). My major tip is keep thinking about your soft skills and how to improve them. They make all the difference.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2017
  7. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    The population is playing a major role in those test scores. It's like conparing America to Finland. It can't be done.
     
  8. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    AlwaysAttend,

    From my reading, it seemed you were suggesting that it was immoral for me to accept a job outside my subject area. So in that context I explained that given that the students I teach are meeting the standards my country has set, I'm comfortable with my decision. In Canada, putting pedagogy first and content second is working. I have noted in many of your threads that you really value content knowledge. For example, when we were talking about math you noted that you thought math teachers should have to have x number of university credits. I noted that in my province a qualified math teacher does not need that many credits. So my experience is simply different and has led to a different perspective. I work in the classrooms of approximately 30 teachers a year and my experience is that content knowledge is important but not as important as pedagogical knowledge and a willingness to continue to learn in both areas.

    So I would continue to encourage Leaborb to apply for positions that he believes he could successfully fill.
     
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  9. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    I was trying to move the discussion elsewhere but my final comment is trying to explain the point I'm making. Its like suggesting a student gets the same education at Harvard and a state school. It isn't reality. They could be brilliant and get straight A's, but imagine the possibilities of the better learning environment.

    The best interests of a student are met when they have an expert on pedagogy and content. No teacher worth their salt is one or the other. Even after you have both, you still need to learn how to function in a classroom.

    I'm not attacking you personally, I'm also not going to tell you the setup you describe is what's in the best interests of students. It's the same reason I don't go on the test takers thread and tell the people who fail basic skills tests 5 times that they should study more. If they can't pass the tests in 3 tries they have no business teaching kids. If their colleges had told them that, they would have saved them a lot of money.
     
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  10. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Enthusiast

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    Mods, please don't shut down this useful thread. I promise I won't post anymore no matter what!
     
  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Neither is ok
     
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  12. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Groupie

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    Yep and I'll continue to encourage others, including the OP, who asked about his science degree. I mean it's probable that the school would hire you until they could find a qualified replacement anyway. One of my classmates did a couple of LTS gigs in elementary school last year. They moved her around because they really needed her. The SPED teacher died unexpectedly died and they really needed a replacement, so they put her there. She was not qualified at all for the job, but took it because she needed a job and they needed her.
    Yeah the idea of just hiring a sub and putting them in front of the computer isn't a solution, because one could argue why not do that for ALL teachers? :(
    I'm not here to convince or persuade anyone to do anything. I simply mentioned to the OP give it a shot if he's desperate for a job and feels he could fill a need that a school has. In my area it's really not unheard of for one type of science teacher to fill another. I remember in HS when our chem teacher went on maternity leave she was replaced by a Bio teacher who ''hadn't taken chem in years.''
    It wasn't ideal, but it was the best that they could do.
     
  13. Always__Learning

    Always__Learning Companion

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    Glad it was of some help Leaborb. I think for me it is about teachers applying to things that they feel they can do. I would never suggest someone apply to something they don't feel capable of. If they feel they can interview well for the position and can be effective in the role, I would recommend applying if that is the context of the region. Applying is the candidate's job. HR gets to decide if they meet the requirements. Where I work both our union and our administrators would tell new teachers this. Where I work, if there are qualified applicants, the Principal would never even know the candidate had applied. HR forwards the names of who the Principal is to interview. HR sorts applicants based on the parameters. HR would never be upset with someone for applying outside of their subject. It is simply part of the process.

    In my case the subject was one I had a lot of experience in but which I didn't see myself teaching for 30 years, so I hadn't pursued the qualification. The Principal had a very short time line at a bad time of year at a rare moment where there were no qualified applicants. She wanted to give the contract (which in the end will cost the District about 2 million dollars over the course of my career) to someone she wanted working for the District for the next 30-35 years. In that context, she felt I was the right hire. Where I am people do not get hired because they are going to teach X for 35 years. (I would never have imagined that I would end up in all the cool roles I've ended up in or that I'd have the credentials I have now when I started.) They get hired because the District is willing to invest 2 million dollars in them. So subject knowledge matters but not as much as the one's emotional intelligence, openness to change and pedagogy. My P knew they would move me into another subject within a year or two and hire a qualified person to teach this subject at a better time of year when they had a strong group of candidates with qualifications to hire from.
     
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  14. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Groupie

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    :thumbs:
     
  15. mrsboxley

    mrsboxley Rookie

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    Okay, I think it's time for me to give up on teaching. I graduated from a one- year post- bac program in 2012, certified in MS English. I applied for everything I was even vaguely qualified for over the following three years. I stopped counting after I hit 280--yes, 280 jobs. I got jobs as a para, which was cool, but not what I was trained for. I added Secondary English and School Nurse. Nothing. I moved to a different state that has "a shortage of teachers." I got hired for the 2nd job I applied for, adding Elementary Ed. By testing out. Mind you, I'm good at Math and Science, but I have never taken any instruction whatsoever in TEACHING Math or Science.
    I taught 5th Grade last year. The P made it clear from the beginning that he was giving me the "lowest-scoring kids in the school," but that I mustn't ever tell anyone that. Turns out, he sandbags 2-3 teachers each year, scapegoating them to the school board, blaming the teachers in order to cover his own ass while he applies for Superintendent jobs.
    I taught my heart out last year. I had kids coming to school who used to skip school 20+ days a year. For me, they only missed 2 or 3. That has to mean SOMETHING.
    We teachers were evaluated based on our students' Math scores, and the school as a whole did poorly, as they have been for years. Mine were a bit worse than the school average. Why wouldn't they be??? They were the lowest students in the school, as chosen by the P! And I didn't have a mentor at ALL, even though it is required by law in this state. And we had no Math Interventionist. The thing is, when the P called me in to tell me he wasn't rehiring me, and I asked him why, he hemmed and hawed and said "test scores," but as I said, my students' scores weren't much worse than anybody else's!
    Then, to beat all, he said he would give me a good reference and letter of recommendation--BUT he never coughed up the letter. AND, when I applied fora HS English position in the district, the {[]{#|€|} sandbagged me AGAIN, telling the HS P that I "had an unsuccessful year" last year.
    I honestly don't thing I'm a bad teacher. My students love me. I taught the curriculum as well as I could, given I has NO support at ALL. And I also made sure they were introduced to some important cultural figures, such as Woody Guthrie, Louis Armstrong, and Elvis. We talked about last fall's election, even though it wasn't "in the curriculum." Most importantly, when those students were in my class, they treated each other with kindness and respect. And the kid who had had a 1:1during all his previous years because he swore at teachers and threw desks--that kid did not ONCE throw anything the whole year. His mom said I was the best teacher he'd ever had.
    But you know what? I'm done. I've invested thousands and thousands of dollars in Grad School and thousands more on teaching supplies that sit in my closet, like a spinster's dusty hope chest. My heart and my spirit are broken. I give up. With an aching heart, I'm going back to Nursing.
     
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