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  #1  
Old 01-20-2013, 06:16 PM
redtop redtop is offline
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Spouse teaches HS French
General Advice on Job-Seeking

Related to another post I made... my wife is an experienced and very well-qualified French teacher. She has been teaching in Canada for 8 years, and is now looking for a job in the USA. She's open to any large metropolitan area on the East Coast.

She hasn't had to interview in 8 years, has never gone through the job-looking process in the USA, and I can't be of much help. I'm an actuary, and the whole process is different when I look for jobs. My credentials are good anywhere in the world, and when a company is looking for an actuary, if they think I'm the best available candidate, they'll hire me, period.

We are figuring out of course that every state has it's own stupid requirements, and we're somewhat resigned to going through a lot of that nonsense. For example, our first choice for her is Northern Virginia, but Virginia doesn't accept the Praxis, they have their own test, and she wouldn't have had to take it if she had taught in the USA for three years, but Canada doesn't count (I guess they can't tell the difference between Canada and Cameroon). So we plopped down $130, she killed off an afternoon, and got 95% of the questions right. Zzzzzzz.

Enough venting, my question is, what advice does anyone have on getting a job beyond just being the best candidate? She's not desperate to take the 25% pay cut she'll have to take (or more!), we have a little bit of an attitude that if a school doesn't appreciate her qualifications and wants her, for example, to fly to the USA on a weekday for a preliminary interview when they don't even have positions open, that they can take their job and ***** it. She has really good credentials, and they should certainly meet her at least halfway. If she doesn't get a job this year, it won't kill us for her to stay in Canada for another year.

But I'm sure there are things people can tell us that we don't know - since we've never gone through this process with teaching.

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 01-20-2013, 06:26 PM
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bella84 bella84 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redtop View Post

... we have a little bit of an attitude that if a school doesn't appreciate her qualifications and wants her, for example, to fly to the USA on a weekday for a preliminary interview when they don't even have positions open, that they can take their job and ***** it. She has really good credentials, and they should certainly meet her at least halfway.

Thanks in advance.
Assuming she is looking in a public school district, I wouldn't be surprised if she does have to deal with a preliminary screening interview. Public schools are bureaucratic organizations, and they have hiring procedures that must be followed according to school board policy. She may be able to request a phone interview rather than having to fly in for the initial screening interview. When I was looking for out-of-state jobs, I was offered the chance to do the screening interview over the phone. I'd assume that they'd want to meet her in person for more advanced stages of interviewing, however. If she is looking into private schools, they may have more lenient interviewing and hiring procedures. Good luck to her!
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  #3  
Old 01-20-2013, 06:29 PM
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czacza czacza is offline
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It's hard enough to transfer from one state to another...if you are already in the US, could she sub for a while while she gets her paperwork in order? It can take a while..And I do hope she has a better attitude than your posts convey.
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  #4  
Old 01-20-2013, 07:31 PM
redtop redtop is offline
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Replying to the above... of course she would expect a screening interview, but we'd expect them to do it on the phone.

She is not in the US now. She is still living and working in Canada, so substitute teaching is not an option.

And she has a great attitude about teaching. What neither of us had a great attitude about is people expecting her to k*** their a** for the privilege of taking a big pay cut. I don't work for companies that make me grovel to work for them, but once I get a job I give it 110%.
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  #5  
Old 01-20-2013, 07:43 PM
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czacza czacza is offline
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Red...most markets are highly competitive due to pay cuts, a glut of highly qualified teachers competing for a limited number of jobs, displaced teachers...as a member of the hiring committee in a highly competitive district, I can assure you that butt kissing and groveling doesn't work. What gets a candidate hired is being highly qualified, knowledgeable, passionate, flexibility, and a 'fit' for the needs of the school. As far as payscale, it's often dictated by contract, budget constraints, recent hiring decisions and a bit of administrator discretion. Your wife may not get credit for all her out of country teaching experience.
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  #6  
Old 01-21-2013, 08:35 AM
redtop redtop is offline
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Spouse teaches HS French
We understand that she's going to take a pay cut, salary isn't our main issue.

What we're not willing to do is have her fly to the USA for a screening interview, doubly so if there aren't even any specific openings.

We don't expect her to be hired unless she is the best-qualified candidate for a position - but we think her credentials and experience are pretty strong.

But I didn't post this to vent or show an attitude. I posted it for advice - seriously - on how to get an interview, and how to close the deal.
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  #7  
Old 01-21-2013, 11:51 AM
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Caesar753 Caesar753 is offline
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Is she legally able to work in the US? If not, that will be the first step.

Request that interviews be done over the phone or via Skype.

Apply for state teaching licenses in the state(s) where you want to live. Have these in hand before applying to districts within that state.
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  #8  
Old 01-21-2013, 01:00 PM
redtop redtop is offline
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She does have her US residency.

It's almost impossible to get her licensed in every state she might want to teach in. That would be at least a dozen states. I understand your point though. There will be states who will say "Based on your credentials, we believe that in a classroom you could walk on water. But we can't hire you because you didn't pass the "Pennsyltucky Comprehensive Writing Assessment Subpart On When To Use Red Pens And When To Use Blue." We're hoping that in states where they don't recognize her North Carolina license, sanity will prevail and they will at least let her interview pending some of the more nonsensical paperwork.
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  #9  
Old 01-21-2013, 01:04 PM
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Caesar753 Caesar753 is offline
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The job market in most places is extremely competitive. She likely won't even be considered if she doesn't have a license in hand. Sorry.
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  #10  
Old 01-21-2013, 01:05 PM
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Caesar753 Caesar753 is offline
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Also, it seems like you have a really low opinion of the public education system, or at least the licensure aspect of it. Does your wife share these concerns? If so, she might want to stay in Canada. The licensing process is probably the least complicated aspect of teaching here in the US.
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