Catholic School Interview

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by Jlyn07, Jun 16, 2009.

  1. Jlyn07

    Jlyn07 Comrade

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    Jun 16, 2009

    I have an interview for a Catholic school on Monday. I don't know the first thing about Catholic schools and am not Catholic. The job posting didn't specify anything about teaching religion so I'm assuming it's going to be a regular ed position but do you think the questions they ask will be different? Any advice at all?

    Thanks!
     
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  3. Kangaroo22

    Kangaroo22 Virtuoso

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    Jun 16, 2009

    I think that they'll ask a lot of the same questions, but might ask how you would incorporate faith or be comfortable teaching religion. Good luck!
     
  4. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Good luck!
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jun 16, 2009

    What grade/subject?
     
  6. Jlyn07

    Jlyn07 Comrade

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    Jun 16, 2009

    I'm not sure of the grade; it'll be elementary, they had Preschool, First and Fourth listed on the ad but they didn't tell me when they called to set up the interview.
     
  7. teacherfan

    teacherfan Cohort

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    When I went to a Catholic school interview they did not ask any questions about religion just the "regular" interview questions that have been brought up on this site. I didn't get the job :(
     
  8. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    Elementary school positions will likely be looking for somebody who's Catholic, or at least has a strong working knowledge of the Church's practices and teachings. As the primary teacher, most Catholic elementary school teachers actually teach and model the faith. As a Catholic parent, I would yank my kids the moment I found out their non subject specific teacher wasn't catholic, and schools know there are many parents out there just like me. If I'm paying good money to send my kids to a Catholic school, they'd better be learning the faith, and that can't happen if their teacher doesn't know anything about it.

    Now that all the negative stuff is out of the way, if I was in your shoes I would spend an awful lot of time between now and the interview studying about the Catholic church just so you have an idea of what its all about. As a non-Catholic, you'd stand a much better chance if you had a good knowledge about the church and its practices.
     
  9. lou reed

    lou reed Companion

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    Jun 17, 2009

    If you're a non-Catholic hired at a catholic school, a Catholic teacher will teach religion for you. At my school, 1/3 of the staff is probably non-Catholic but none of them are able to teach religion.
     
  10. Jlyn07

    Jlyn07 Comrade

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Thanks for the replies. I can see the argument about wanting a Catholic teacher in a Catholic school but their ad didn't specify so I applied anyway. Some other people I've talked to said a lot of religious schools have many non-religious people employed there.

    I'll go prepared and hope for the best.
     
  11. tcherjen

    tcherjen Comrade

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    Jun 18, 2009

    Good luck! :)
     
  12. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    Jul 11, 2009

    I know this is an older posting...but i thought I would comment since i have something to say about this.

    I am a non-Catholic who worked for 4 years in a Catholic School. Being the music teacher I even had to teach the liturgical music as well as the music for the Catholic services, and the children's Communion, Reconciliation, and Confirmation.

    The ONLY one who seemed to have a problem with me NOT being Catholic (or the only one I EVER heard having a problem with it) was the Minister of music for the church...an older nun who was QUITE controlling and mean-spirited. (Boy, do I have stories about Life with Sister B) One person had mentioned to her that I should be used as the cantor at the school services since the kids knew my voice and would follow it well. the nun was FURIOUS..."NEVER!" and chose instead to have them follow this old operatic soprano. The kids would snicker and hardly follow her. The maddening part though was that *I* would be blamed if the kids didn't sing in church up to the minister's likings. Hey-chose GOOD contemporary Christian music and have a person with a NORMAL voice lead them...and they would have done great. (On the few opportunities that these directions WERE followed- the kids boomed!)

    After the kids first learned that I WASN'T Catholic, I became a window to the outside. A sort-of messenger of the forbidden. Hahahahaha. The jr high would ask me..."so what do YOU believe?" Finally to get rid of the questions I told them that the differences were amazingly few.

    We believe saints are wonderful followers of God...but we don't pray to them (or hold them as high of honor as the Catholic faith does). Though Mary is looked upon as the mother of Jesus...an we believe the facts of her life are the same as Catholics believe them to be...we don't place her as high either..and we don't pray to her. (She was the mother of Jesus - what an honor..but not to be prayed to.)
    We don't go to confession... we believe our prayers are heard as they are said directly....thus we aren't given directions of what to do because of our sins. This is fine with many-but some feel that they aren't yet forgiven-so they do "acts" to make up for things, on their own. (With this I was tipping my hat in the Catholics favor... I didn't say ..acts/directions aren't needed..nor that the intercession of a priest isn't needed...THAT would be slamming the faith of these children, and THAT was the LAST thing I would EVER EVER do).
    Besides that.. it's more ritual and procedures of the actual church service and the timing of the sacraments (first communion in the Lutheran faith-at the time I was a child, came with confirmation. Later it was moved to around fifth grade).
    What we have in common is MUCH more precious! The love of God...the wondrous salvation through his Son, Jesus...and a calling to be followers of Christ- and to serve his Kingdom.

    This satisfied them...and I was never asked about it again. (I'm sure reports of the conversation got around to those higher up and to the parents and parish. - Word spread like WILDFIRE! It must have been ok because I never heard any back-lash...and believe me, i would have!)


    888888


    Added....

    I WAS asked if i was Catholic at my interview (though the answer was clearly on my application). I said no.

    What WAS I? - I considered myself Lutheran - and attended a Lutheran church my entire life. (At that time)

    And then I went on to describe how I believed my faith was a cornerstone in my life. (I had been a strong believer all my life and taught Sunday School since I was in 6th grade.) It was actually a wonderful conversation. And obviously did the trick.
     
  13. Simba

    Simba Comrade

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    Jul 11, 2009

    Great reply McKennaL!!

    Sound advice.
     
  14. Jlyn07

    Jlyn07 Comrade

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    Jul 11, 2009

    This was my original post - the interview went great but I haven't heard from them. I think what made me not get the job was that I'm not religious. They didn't ask if I was Catholic but on the application (that they gave me after the interview was over & I mailed back to them) I had to put what religion I was, what church I attended regularly and why I wanted to teach at a Catholic school. I'm Protestant but never go to church so I think that hurt my chances. I think if I had belonged to a church I probably would have gotten the job; they seemed to really like me and gave me a tour of the school that day.
     
  15. ambritlit

    ambritlit Companion

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    Jul 11, 2009

    I'm not Catholic, but I taught at a Catholic high school for two years. They were very interested in having someone who was active in church, even as a Protestant. The principal said that I was not expected to instruct in Catholic doctrine, but I was expected to open each class with a prayer or devotion - whatever I wanted to do was fine but he asked me more than once if I was comfortable praying in class. They also stressed that it is the teacher's job to model that attitude of Christ to students and the contract had a morality clause.
     
  16. Windy City

    Windy City Companion

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    Jul 11, 2009

    I specifically requested to student teach in a Catholic school because I wanted to see what it was like in relation to public schools. I am not Catholic, and consider myself a Buddhist.

    As a non-Catholic, I would not want to work in a Catholic school (or any school where I did not practice that religion). There are waaaaay too many rules and rituals that must be followed and practiced, and it is uncomfortable standing there while the students are doing these things and you, as the teacher, are not. There are so many times during the day when you have to pray, recite verses, make the sign of the cross, etc...

    It's even more obvious in Mass where you still have to march down the aisle, only crossing your arms instead of taking the bread from the priest. It's a huge public display to the entire school that you are not Catholic.

    I also think that it lends less credibility to the teacher if they are not doing the same things that the students were doing. Plus, the teacher was required to teach 30 minutes religion every day. It would not be to the schools advantage to hire somebody to teach, only to have to find somebody else in the building to fill in on that one class each day.

    I am glad that I did my student teaching in a Catholic school, because it helped me realize that I would not want to work there as a full-time teacher. It's certainly nothing against the religion, the students, or the people. It's just the fact that I would not be able to participate in too many aspects of daily school life.
     
  17. ambritlit

    ambritlit Companion

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    I think it just depends on the school. Ours was very inclusive. Approximately 30% of our student body was non-Catholic, including Buddhists and Muslims. Several members of the faculty were non-Catholic. No one blinked an eye when I didn't cross myself or take communion. It was a non-issue. One of my closest friends there ended up being a religion teacher. We had one nun on staff and everyone absolutely adored her. She came to see me on the last day and hugged me and we cried because I was leaving. Although I am firmly protestant, the acceptance I felt at our Catholic school rivals any church setting I've ever been in.
     
  18. Simba

    Simba Comrade

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    Jul 12, 2009

    I think it does depend on the school.

    Do your research before the interview to be prepared, and then "probe" the individual doing the interview to see what he/she is actually looking for.
     
  19. BerniceBobs

    BerniceBobs Comrade

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    Jul 12, 2009

    I'll say ten hail Mary's for you!
    Kidding, from what I understand it is no longer necessary for you to be Catholic to teach in an Catholic school.
     
  20. MathManTim

    MathManTim Companion

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    Jul 12, 2009

    This is *exactly* what the principals of the two local Catholic high schools told me when I interviewed with them. Of course, I actually *am* Catholic, so it wasn't a big deal.

    MathManTim
     

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