Received 2 Offers - Give Advice + need advice

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by consciousteach, Jul 17, 2017.

  1. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    I’m a first year alternate route candidate in NJ who just got my Science/Student of Disabilities cert two months ago. Since then I have applied to about forty positions in many districts, including a private and a charter school. This afternoon I received a tentative offer from a charter school to teach middle school science and another offer form a public school. I still have have an interview tomorrow. The charter schools is having their board meeting tomorrow. But I told them yes. I do not know if I should choose from the charter school or abbot public.

    The charter school is longer hours. They said it would be more work, but we would have more flexibility. I do not know how much micromanaged it will be as I tried to find reviews on Glassdoor but couldn't. The salary is decent, but I do not know about the benefits. They gave me the offer after the interview. They don't have a smart board and students share Ipads. I don't think it has too many discipline problems since it is a charter.

    The public school has more resources. It is in an abbot district that is known for problems. But this offer came after the panel interview. The HR person called, and didn't even tell me the salary or benefits. I feel so rushed because they both came so fast. I didn't officially sign anything yet though even though I kind of committed to the charter.

    Can you help me?
     
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  3. justwanttoteach

    justwanttoteach Cohort

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    Can you look at the salary benefits on Website/HR section?
    I am unsure how Charters work in NJ. However, I know that in CA many if not all Charter schools are At Will employers. Which means they can fire you at any time for any reason no matter how long you have been working there. Whereas, in CA if you are teaching at school with a union it is based on Seniority after your first 2 years in the district. In my district many of our behavior students are sent to the Charter school primarily because they have shown to not do well in the traditional setting and Charter seems to have lower classes sizes and or room to get in to too much trouble. If it were me, I would do the public schoool....but do what is best for you! Get back to the ASAP so as to avoid burning bridges.
     
  4. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

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    Abbott districts do have funding and money. Many/most are in urban areas. I would choose a public school position over a charter school position any day of the week. I was an AR candidate when I started, and I was thrilled to find my first job in a public school. Many of my cohort members were in charter schools and I saw the hours they expected to put in while being an at will employee. For me it would be no contest.
     
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2017
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  5. pennyandme

    pennyandme Rookie

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    I'm coming out of lurkdom for this! Granted my experiences may be the exception....this may help you a little.

    My first year of teaching was at a charter school and it was absolutely the worst year of my life. I was given a lot of "freedom", but that was code for no curriculum and micromanaging instructional practices on a teacher by teacher basis. Basically, what was okay for one teacher was not okay for the next. Our evaluations were verbal and we were given nothing in writing. The bosses cherry picked what they wanted and their expectations changed daily with very little direction or warning.

    Because there was no union, teachers were picked on and bullied. They were suspended without pay or warning for reasons that would never fly in a public school setting. If the students misbehaved, it was because of the teacher (even though many were late transfers because of behavior issues in a public setting). It was easier to punish the teacher than the student because if a student is out the school doesn't get funding. At a charter school you have no rights. You are expected to work longer hours with more work for lower pay and no union. Administrators are able to get away with this because you are at will and there's no one there to monitor them or keep them in check.

    I would choose a public school based on more protection and rules that have to be followed. Public schools have a set of rules and expectations that both teachers and administrators have to follow, while charters tend to fly by the seats of their pants.

    I hope I didn't scare you too much! This charter may be great but I would definitely research. Maybe check the school report cards and any social media they may have. Good luck deciding!
     
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  6. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

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    Jul 17, 2017

    Welcome to the forums. It's always fine to "lurk", but we're glad you've taken the plunge into member status. Let us know if we can be of any help.:welcome:
     
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  7. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    Thanks for the responses everyone. I have until Wednesday to tell the public school. And the charter school is signing the agenda tomorrow. I found kind of fishy how they offered me the job after just 90 minutes. This is so hard.
     
  8. pennyandme

    pennyandme Rookie

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    One good thing about charter schools and being "At-Will" is that you have the right to leave at any time. If you do decide last minute to take the public school job, you won't be penalized unless it is explicitly written in your contract that you can't leave.
     
  9. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    Also wanted to add that they mentioned contract. So would you guys still choose a traditional public school over that
     
  10. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

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    IMHO a contract with a public school has clout. If you don't want that job, don't take it. What I witnessed was that the "contract" from the charter schools protect the school much more than the teacher. I have heard about the bullying and lack of clear agenda that is the same for every teacher from teachers trying to live through it. Granted, I was on the outside looking in, but I wouldn't have wanted to switch positions with them for all the tea in China.
     
  11. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    For me, other things being relatively equal, I would choose the public school over the charter. Did you get a better feeling from either principal? I have to add, the charter making a quick offer doesn't strike me as fishy. It's hiring season and if you have a strong candidate, it makes sense to move quickly before someone else scoops them up.
     
  12. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    I would also take a public school position over a charter in a heartbeat. Charters actually have good reputations among the general public in my area and are well known to have "easier" students. On the surface it seems like it would be a better work environment, but every single teacher I've known IRL who has worked in a charter (and I'm talking 10+ people) has had an absolutely miserable experience. At least in my area, they tend to be run by people who have no background in education but think they know better than the professionals and can "fix" education. The at will thing is no joke either. I had one friend fired mid-year because some parents complained about her homework policy and she didn't change it, and I had another friend let go mid-year because their enrollment declined. The salary/benefits information for the public school should be available on their website. If you can't find it, call HR and ask.
     
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  13. pennyandme

    pennyandme Rookie

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    After my experience at the charter school, I actually took a $20,000+ pay cut and opted for a Teacher's Assistant job just so I could recover and get my head together. I was infinitely happier. I wouldn't go back to a charter school for a million dollars. I know that the 9 teachers who quit in one school year would agree with me. ;)
     
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  14. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

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    Just a head's up - if you go with the charter, make sure that you specify going with the AR program that works in public schools. Unless something has changed, you can get, in essence, a charter school certificate that can't be used at public schools. I haven't worried about that stuff in a while, but I just shook my head over NJ having a charter only certificate. Never made any sense to me at all.
     
  15. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    I really appreciate all this good advice from everyone. This means alot. Now, after hearing all this I am leaning towards the public. It was just that I was receiving so many rejections that I was taken aback and told the principal that I was committing. I didn't even meet the head principal for the middle school. It was an elementary school principal and vice principal that gave me the offer
     
  16. vickilyn

    vickilyn Maven

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    Do you have firm offers from both, or only the charter, with the hope of the public school? Makes a difference.

    If you haven't signed on any dotted line, you have the right to interview, hold firm, or change your mind. Make sure that you are happy with the job. You will have to work on your AR coursework, start on your TOSD coursework, and find your way in the system. Make sure you have made the choice that allows you to have the time to learn your job while meeting the education expectations of your job.
     
  17. pennyandme

    pennyandme Rookie

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    That's definitely a normal reaction! I've definitely been there. Every offer sounds amazing when you've been searching with seemingly no end in sight. At the end of the day, the decision is yours. Do what feels right for you. Congratulations on the offer by the way!
     
  18. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    Vickilyn,

    By firm offer do you mean verbal? The charter school welcomed me to the team and recommended me to the Board and they are signing tomorrow.

    The HR lady for the public said that I have been offered a position. She told me to come in with my transcript and everything. I told her I would need more time. This was all earlier today.
     
  19. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    How exactly did you leave things with the public school HR? Did you say you needed more time to decide, or more time to get your paperwork together? What time frame did they give you in response to you saying that? If you want the public school job, get your paperwork together and make an appointment with HR. Once you sign on with them, let the charter school know you've changed your mind, and are declining their offer.
     
  20. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    mathteachertobe,

    I just asked can I have a few more days to decide? She said I have until Thursday. I told her I will get back to her by Wednesday. But now I will get back to her by tomorrow morning. Now, I'm in a bit of a jam because earlier today I confirmed an interview for tomorrow at another school and I know I'm not even going to accept. But I don't want to tell the principal last minute and burn bridges after he's been emailing me all weekend.
     
  21. consciousteach

    consciousteach Rookie

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    Also would it be rude to just email the charter school principal my decision to withdraw. I don't want to speak to her over the phone. But I do not want to be unprofessional and ghost them either.
     

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