Third job rejection - can't even get a maternity leave position

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Taylor556, Mar 26, 2019.

  1. Taylor556

    Taylor556 Rookie

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    Mar 26, 2019

    Hi everyone! I need advice on a couple different things.

    For one, I did not have a positive student teaching experience. My mentor teacher was psycho, and no I'm not exaggerating. I had to go inside twice during recess because I was sick. I let her and the other teachers out there know. She didn't believe that I was really sick and said I left the students unsupervised and went to the principal and let him know. There was way more that happened. The principal listened to her on everything, including her saying I have poor classroom management. He said it was a safety concern. That was not true. There was one boy in the class that was a major behavior issue and I couldn't get him in line. Ironically, he's now been removed from the class. Surprise, Surprise.

    Anyway, I did not ask for a letter of recommendation from her. I asked for one from my college supervisor. He wrote me one. However, on EVERY job application, you have to list your student teaching unless you've been teaching for 3 years or more. If any principal I try to obtain a job from calls the principal at the school where I did my student teaching or calls the mentor teacher I'm done. I won't be believed over a principal.

    Today I just got my third job rejection. It was for a maternity leave and I am 99% certain I was competing against only 2 other people. The interview went REALLY well! Looking back at it, there's not much I would change. It went extremely well. They were very impressed with my answers. They said I checked everything they were looking for in regards to my reading block. They were impressed when I brought up specific curriculum names and even brought someone else in the room to have me repeat one of my answers. However, he asked the principal's name at the school where I did my student teaching. He said he used to work in the area and that his name didn't look familiar. I gave it (didn't have a choice) and now I'm wondering if he contacted him.

    After the interview, I sent excellent thank you notes to all four people who interviewed me. Both the principal and assistant principal responded to my email and thanked me and said it was nice to meet me. So when the principal called me 3 days later, I thought I had the job but it was a rejection call. He told me they decided to go with another candidate.

    Question 1: How do I get a job despite my horrible student teaching experience? Surely I can't be the only one who had a bad experience and didn't get along with my mentor teacher.

    Question 2: Do you think he contacted the principal at the school where I did my student teaching? I don't understand how they can be this impressed with me but not want to hire me. And I only had 2 people to compete against.

    Question 3: Why can't I get a job?!! I've interviewed for 2 maternity leave positions and one position where the teacher left to pursue another opportunity. Rejected every time. Two of them called, one sent me an email. The way I see it is this interview that went as close to flawlessly as an interview can go, if I didn't get the job this time with that amazing interview, I'll never get one. It literally went that well. So when I got a rejection call, it was mindblowing. And it looks bad that nobody will hire me and I'm just having to sub. But it's really pathetic when I can't get a maternity leave position when I'm competing against only two other people.
     
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  3. Aces

    Aces Cohort

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    Mar 26, 2019

    Question 1&3 are the same question, just worded differently. Thus the answer is the same: finding a job is always a numbers game. It's the sheer amount of applications and the number of interviews that you get which is what gets you the job. When you have no experience, no recommendations from your student teaching, it makes it harder to get the job, but it's not impossible. Just got to work harder.

    Question 2: I don't think you'll like the answer. Yes he probably contacted them, even if he didn't, it doesn't matter. Obviously you did not impress them as much as you think you did, because if you had, you would have gotten the job. Either you impress them more than the other candidates and you get the job, or you don't impress them enough.

    More over, be honest with yourself about how it went and your own flaws. I don't think the full story is being said, it almost sounds like you're pumping yourself up to make yourself look good. Not a slight against you, but that's how it reads to me. For instance the issue of the student who was a behavioral issue. What did you do to correct the behavior? Regardless of what students throw at us, it reflects on us how we handle the situation. We cannot control the actions of others, only our own. So based on the information we have, I would say it's a fair assessment of the situation that you exhibited poor classroom management. It's okay to get admins involved for a student — that's what we're here for. But you also have to make sure you take the steps in order to fix the problem, too.

    More importantly, what have you learned from the situation? What have you gained?
     
  4. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Mar 26, 2019

    The job market is really, really, really tough in many places right now. In my area, getting three interviews would be considered a victory, even if a job offer wasn't the end result. It takes many new graduates several years before they are able to land a permanent teaching contract. I'm hopeful that you aren't ready to throw in the towel because it sounds as though you are.

    You don't have any control over what is being said (I hope that you addressed what you feel are false accusations with the program supervisor of your student teaching program), but you do have control over what you are doing now. When you are subbing, be visible. Introduce yourself to the office staff, the administrators and the teachers you come in contact with. If you spend several days in a school, ask the P if they could come in to do an informal evaluation. Volunteer in a neighbourhood school on days when you aren't subbing. Build a network. Keep applying and keep interviewing; look at each interview as a new connection in your network and as an opportunity to hone your interview skills.

    Good luck in your search.
     
  5. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    Mar 26, 2019

    Some people get 20 rejections before getting a job. Honestly, only 3 is nothing complain about even though it seems like a lot.
     
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  6. tchr4vr

    tchr4vr Companion

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    Mar 26, 2019

    When I was looking for work out of state, many moons ago, I submitted 150 job applications. I got 2 interviews. I know part of that was being out of state. But even when I have looked for work in state, it's tough. We have about 10 districts locally that I can work at. I have had a few years where I have applied in every district, to every job that is available, and have not gotten an interview. I have 15+ years experience, multiple certifications and glowing recommendations. It is a numbers game. Keep trying, don't give up. Eventually, a position will come along.
     
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  7. futuremathsprof

    futuremathsprof Aficionado

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    Mar 26, 2019

    Holy cow, 150 interviews?! I would never have the stamina to do that. I guess I’m just lucky in that I only applied to 5 districts and was asked to interview at each one. And of the five that I interviewed at, I was offered a job at 3, but only because I walked out of the other two (there was shooting down the street at one) and the taxes, union dues, and other deductions at the other were simply too much (like 40-50% of my projected take-home pay).
     
  8. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Connoisseur

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    Mar 26, 2019

    10 and 12 years ago when I was searching for jobs I put out more than 200 applications. Had over 20 interviews. Like others have said the job market in some places are tough. I had to go out of my comfort zone, move my family 500 miles before I found the right place. For one district that I applied at multiple times there were 33 openings and over 6000 applicants so just getting an interview was more than unexpected, it was like an honor. Just keep trying, eventually you will find the right spot for you. Good luck in the future.
     
  9. Taylor556

    Taylor556 Rookie

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    Mar 26, 2019

    Thank you to everyone who helped and offered good advice! To the first poster, I just wanted to say that I wasn't the problem when it came to this student. I took numerous steps to resolve the behavior: involving him more in lessons, giving him jobs, calling his parents, giving/taking away Dojo points for positive and negative behavior. Nothing helped. Nothing. After all else failed, I sent him to the principal. He was removed from the classroom and expelled. He threatened to hurt the principal so funny how I'm being blamed here. We do the best we can as teachers but you can't reach everyone.

    Also, I do have a letter of recommendation from my college supervisor during my student teaching, just not one from my mentor teacher or the principal at the school.

    I'm not making the interview sound better than it was. I've had some interviews that were so bad and I lost my train of thought and there were so many things that were terrible about it. I can admit that. I can admit when an interview went terrible. But I'm literally being honest about this one. This interview was close to flawless (not flawless, no interview is). But as close to flawless as you can get. My best interview yet. They loved my answers and even admitted how my reading block is exactly what they're looking for and they even called someone else into the room who wasn't in there initially to hear my answers. So I'm not pumping myself up to make myself sound good, with all due respect. But it is what it is at this point. Can't change it.
     
  10. Baroness

    Baroness Rookie

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    Mar 26, 2019

    Keep trying! Apply everywhere! Even if they aren't hiring, just send in your resume.
     
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  11. nklauste

    nklauste Comrade

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    Mar 27, 2019

    The best way to get experience is to sub. I have been offered a total of 5 jobs throughout my job searches (some were multiple offers in a single year), but I have been turned down after interviewing for probably 50+ jobs! You just have to keep pushing ahead and getting experience wherever you can.
     
  12. Lei286

    Lei286 Rookie

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    Apr 17, 2019

    I hated my student teaching experience as well. My cooperating teacher and I did not get along and I felt like she would set an expectation and then undermine me in front of the students when I would try to follow through with that expectation. I was SO happy when it was done! So I sympathize...

    I'm also terrible at interviews! I finally got a job after being a para/long-term and daily sub and doing anything related to students around the age I wanted to teach.

    Could you volunteer at a school through the school district? Or be a sub or para? Sucks but at least then you can get to know staff and admin at one partilcur place/district and they can write you recommendations instead. Was there a teacher at the school where you student taught that would be willing to write a recommendation for you that you better connected with?
     
  13. runsw/scissors

    runsw/scissors Phenom

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    It sounds to me like a case of bad reccommendations. Polish your resume. Practice your interview responses. Make sure you prepare to address your student teaching experiences without throwing your cooperating teacher under the bus. That will only make you look bad. If you still get no where after a couple interviews you may want to do some detective work. Is your rec file opened or closed to you? My college really pushed for me to have a closed file, but I refused to do it. Since I was able to see my file with all the records and letters, I ordered a copy to be sent to me and went through the letters with a principal I was on good terms with. She read through them with an eye of someone looking to hire and told me which were less than glowing and why. I was able to remove those and find people who could write better letters to replace the bad one. If you can't do this, could you have someone from a school call and act like they are looking to hire and get a copy of the letters or speak to the recs you used? That can be enlightening as well. Don't rule out parents you had good relationships with. I like the idea about volunteering at schools to get more experience and meet more people who can write you letters of recommendation.
     
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  14. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    *References are KEY especially when you are first starting out. If the interview went well, but he didn't land a job, it very well could be that the reference check killed it. What he could do is call his references and ask "hey did so -and-so from a school contact you?" If the answer is yes, then it suggests that the school DID do reference checks and was probably /possibly considering hiring the OP, but stopped cold. And yes it probably was from the school. You can use a reference check service and have them call to see what's being said; they call and then will send you notes about how it went. Alternatively, you need to get as much experience as possible and at this point subbing may be the way. You can sub for a while, get experience, network and get new references. You have a ''black mark'' on your folder and you want to try and minimize that as much as possible. If the choice comes down to two candidates and one is squeaky clean with great references and the other isn't... who do you think they will pick?
    Despite the "teaching shortage'' BS claim, there are still enough teachers for districts to be super picky and will find any reason to dismiss a candidate. :( @Taylor556
     
  15. aeteacher1986

    aeteacher1986 Rookie

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    I totally agree with subbing! I have moved often due to my husband's work and I always start by subbing and using that to get my foot in the door. It has worked numerous times. It is unfortunate to not have a permanent classroom, but I always think of it like I am scoping out the area, just like they are scoping out long term subs or potential teachers!
     
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  16. miss_roxy

    miss_roxy Rookie

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    May 12, 2019

    Be patient, continue teaching as a sub. Pick the school you want a job at and sub there as much as you can. Volunteer for events, develop repertoire with staff and students, shine as a teacher whenever you visit. When a job opening comes up they will think of you, and they will take their own experience of your actual work ethic over your practicum reference.
    Another option is to consider moving to a remote or rural district where there are teacher shortages, in order to gain experience and cultivate positive references.
     
  17. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    May 18, 2019 at 12:18 PM

    You WILL get something. We've all been there. You may get a job you really don't want (i.e. not the best school, not the best fit) BUT try it and your perserverence in that school year WILL get you where you want to be.

    A former colleague of mine was railroaded by our former principal and AP. One of her references got word that they were passive aggressively bad mouthing her in the reference calls and forms. She took the only job she received in a not great district (rough students and parents) and had a rough year, she perservered and endured herself to her principal and she got a great reference and will now be teaching at the school zoned to her house and where her children go.

    It does work out. The end of the summer will definitely open more doors. Come July 1st, many places have the deadline to resign and principals will be looking for those positions being filled.

    I've been hired twice in July/August and twice in June. March-May, IMO has to be neoptism or 100% who you know because I've gone to job fairs and never had a bite with those. June job fairs and applying though did yield success.
     

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