Interviewing Where I Student Taught: What Should I Expect?

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by ozzy1011, May 30, 2014.

  1. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Hello! I just finished my student teaching placement in April, and the principal just called me today about interviewing for an opening. My title pretty much sums it up...what should I expect?

    He didn't mention anything about a panel, but neither did the school I interviewed with today. Lo and behold, it was a panel of 3. If it is a panel, I know to expect the department head which is good because she observed me teach and passed my resume to the principal while I was still student teaching. Still, I am always more comfortable interviewing with just one person.

    Does anyone have one-on-one interviews anymore?
     
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  3. ScienceEd

    ScienceEd Companion

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    not really. most will have panel interviews. it helps to have different perspectives and that way the hiring committee can make sure the questions get asked. the idea is they will hire the most qualified person for the job, not just someone who "clicks" with them personally.

    don't expect special treatment.

    treat it like any interview job, but highlight what you like about the school environment and how you can add to the learning atmosphere, etc.
     
  4. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Out of roughly 30 districts I interviewed with last year, I had a one-on-one interview exactly twice. Once was a first round screening interview, one was a second round interview after being through a screening interview by district administration (met 1 on 1 with the P). The second was very laid back and I really think I was a filler.

    As far as interviewing with a school you are comfortable with, the worst thing you can do is be too comfortable and confident. I once blew an interview that way. I also sat on a panel for hiring an AP for my school. We interviewed one of our own teachers and she was the worst interview we had. Her answers were shallow because we know her. But comparing her to the competition, it was awful. I'm sure she'd have a much better interview elsewhere.
     
  5. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Thanks for the tips! I'm especially grateful for the reminder to not feel overly confident. I definitely want to nail this interview, and I don't want to feel so cocky that I fail to really sell myself in an earnest and genuine way.
     
  6. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    We had an awesome student teacher I worked with a few years ago got called for an interview. She worked very well with everyone and everyone knew her. But this position was for 3rd grade (she student taught K) and did subbing around the building. She did not prep for the interview. She sorta assumed she was a shoe in. DON'T do that. Prepare, know their web site, know their goals, ask questions even if you think you know the answer. You need to be just as prepared as everyone else. Good luck I bet you'll do great!
     
  7. teach1

    teach1 Companion

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    I agree with the above posters. You definitely want to treat this interview the same way you would treat any interview. I also know a teacher that blew her chance at her student teaching placement because she was too confident.
     
  8. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    I've definitely been preparing for it today. I know that the principal is a big data guy, so I've been formulating some ideas and responses to potential questions. I'm going to give it all I've got. This is definitely where I've been hoping to work since I began my student teaching placement.

    What I've been struggling with is the obligatory "Do you have any questions for us" that will surely come. I know so much about the campus, demographic, and faculty that I'm really not sure what to ask. The only 2 questions I can really think of are

    1. What grade level is this position for? (Though I'm pretty sure it's for 10th)

    and

    2. Does the district have a new teacher induction program or an extended mentorship program of any kind?

    Any other ideas?
     
  9. teach1

    teach1 Companion

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    You could ask about professional development?
     
  10. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    I'm not sure that would work well in my case. I actually attended a couple of trainings and conferences during my placement.

    I was thinking about asking either the principal or the department head what their goals are for the department next year. I feel like this could potentially segue into a response about how I can help the team achieve that goal. Too cocky?
     
  11. teachinIA4137

    teachinIA4137 Rookie

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    I interviewed with my student teaching placement. I knew everyone on the panel (which is most likely what format they'll do it in) which helped my nerves. But just to reiterate: treat it just like a regular interview - in fact, I tried to go way above and beyond studying and practicing and whatnot. I ended up not getting the job because they wanted a coach (and I now suspect they just were doing my co-op a favor :/ ).

    I would bring a portfolio, extra resumes, etc. Leave them with something. Get EVERYONE'S name that is on the panel and send them a personalized thank you note. I did handwritten but a typed up letter might do the trick if you can get it back to them right away.
    Try to talk about student teaching in their school as much as possible. Since you're a new teacher I would ask about professional development, any opportunities they may have for after-school tutoring, their mentoring program, etc. I tried to steer clear of any questions that I should have already known the answer to because I student taught there.

    Good luck!
     
  12. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Well, it wasn't a panel. I hope that doesn't mean I was a filler.
    It went well, but I won't know until next week at the latest.

    He did ask if I'm talking to anyone else, and I answered honestly that I have a few other interviews scheduled this week. He said, "Do me a favor; if anybody makes an offer, call me."

    We shall see. I have another interview in an hour and a half or so. Setting up two interviews in one day may not have been the best idea. I need coffee.
     
  13. allaragallagher

    allaragallagher Comrade

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    Gosh, I wish I was as busy interviewing as you. Keep up the good work!
     
  14. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    This sounds very promising!!

    I've done that before. In some ways it was nice (didn't have to get ready twice, but in other ways it was worse. I couldn't remember if I had mentioned something or not.
     
  15. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Oh, the horror. That last interview was just...bad.

    There were at least 2 questions that I just rambled on and on about without actually answering. Total verbal diarrhea - laden with buzz words and non-information. One of those questions I actually had earlier in the day and answered just fine, by the way. This time, I opened my mouth and my mind went completely blank.

    I was so very nervous because I was interviewing with the level lead, the department head, and an AP. I could tell that the two teachers were just rock stars, and I found it super intimidating. The expressions on their faces...I could see both pity and confusion.

    Oh well. It was good practice?
     
  16. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Thank you. I hope it keeps going because I haven't had any takers just yet.
     
  17. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    You never know. You may feel like it was verbal diarrhea but it was really what they wanted to hear... just in a LONG drawn out, around the beaten path kinda way. Some groups see through all that!

    I hope hope hope you get what is best for you!
     
  18. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Thank you. :unsure: Time will tell.
     
  19. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Crossing my fingers for good news!
     
  20. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    Oh, man! I just got a call from the principal from student teaching.

    He told me that he knows I have other interviews set up, and he doesn't want me to go canceling anything, but he does want me to know that he intends to offer me the position. He said that he has put in calls to my references and is waiting to hear from them. Additionally, he says that one more step needs to be taken with HR before he can make me an official offer. Unless there are any snags, he will be making an offer.

    I'm pumped! I don't foresee any snags with my references. My cooperating teacher is on his campus right now, and she loves me. My former boss of nearly seven years and I are still on great terms, and my university supervisor has always been positive about me.

    As for the step with HR...I'm not sure what that means, but I suppose he needs official approval. Hopefully, he gets it.

    Cross those fingers for me!
     
  21. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    That sounds great!
     
  22. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Fingers are crossed!
     
  23. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    Not to be Debbie Downer but keep going on interviews. My good friend was promised something similar and never got the offer. She was heart broken and mad and passed on interviews. So I DOUBT that will happen to you just keep it in the back of your mind.
     
  24. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    I'm definitely not cancelling anything, but it's looking pretty good. I heard from the principal again this morning. He had spoken to 2 out of the required 3 references and needed help getting a hold of the 3rd. Basically, my university supervisor offices out of her home rather than the university, and I had written the university office number on my application.

    He told me that that is all he needs in order to recommend me for hire to HR. HR runs the background check (which takes a day or so) and then he will make the offer.

    I'm feeling very good about it, but I do realize weird things happen. I'm holding off on celebrating until I have the official offer.
     
  25. snowball2014

    snowball2014 Rookie

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    Celebrate.

    99.9% of the time, the job goes to the applicant who completed their student teaching at that school- you had the job before they even finished accepting applications.
     
  26. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    That is not the case in my area :2cents:
     
  27. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    I'd agree with Giraffe... it isn't always true. But things to look promising! Just keep moving forward!! And hopefully you can decline other positions from those other schools!!
     
  28. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    I got the job! He made the official offer this afternoon, and I accepted!

    Thanks for all the well wishes and grounding comments in this time of stress. It is much appreciated.
     
  29. chemnerd19

    chemnerd19 Companion

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    CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!! :)


    :hugs:
     
  30. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

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    YAY! I am so happy for you! See it all worked out! Now, go have a drink to celebrate! You earned it!
     
  31. teach1

    teach1 Companion

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    congrats! good for you! :)
     
  32. FarFromHome

    FarFromHome Connoisseur

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    Congrats!
     
  33. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    You don't have to twist my arm, will do ;)
     
  34. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Congrats!
     
  35. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    Congratulations!!
     
  36. snowball2014

    snowball2014 Rookie

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    True, there are times when one applicant has connections (friends on school board, father went to grad school with the principal, etc) that far outrank another candidate simply having completed their student teaching at the school in question. Corruption aside however, the other applicants in this particular instance had virtually no shot at the job. Even their best interview is only ever going to be 15 minutes, compared to this poster who spent 3-6 months chumming it up with the principal and teachers.
    * Nothing against this poster, she may well have been the most qualified, unfortunately she'll never know.
     
  37. snowball2014

    snowball2014 Rookie

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    By the way Ozzy1011, congratulations.

    I'm sincerely happy for you, I just take issue with the fallibility of the scenario.

    *Good luck next year
     
  38. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    I'm a first year teacher, so I highly doubt I've been the "most qualified" for any job I've applied for. The great thing is that I don't need to think otherwise to feel proud of my accomplishment.

    On a side note, I certainly did treat my placement as an extended job interview. And I was wonderful. Consummate professionalism for the win!
     
  39. snowball2014

    snowball2014 Rookie

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    "...I highly doubt I've been the "most qualified" for any job I've applied for... The great thing is that I don't need to think otherwise to feel proud of my accomplishment. "

    -Let's hope you're an English teacher, this statement would make an excellent example of an Oxymoron, or more properly, an oxymoronic statement


    ***All joking aside, relax kid, you got the job, and in no different a manner than half the other teachers out there
     
  40. ozzy1011

    ozzy1011 Rookie

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    I am unfazed. In fact, I'm more relaxed than I've been in months. I have a job!

    I do wish to point out, though, that taken in context there is no contradiction. Surely, you understand that "my accomplishment" refers to getting a teaching job. It is an accomplishment no matter how it was won. They don't just hand them out to any old schmo around here. I don't need to perceive myself as the most accomplished teacher to feel accomplished as a teacher. Make sense?

    I appreciate your congratulations, but your condescension does make it seem a wee bit disingenuous.
     
  41. snowball2014

    snowball2014 Rookie

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    There was no condescension, surely the better part of yourself understood my posts as a condemnation of a faulted system, little else.
    -As to there being no contradiction however, regarding your 'accomplishment', I would have to conclude that at some level you recognize the validity of my premise, why else the defensive and self-righteous response
    ("I certainly did treat my placement as an extended job interview. And I was wonderful.") ?

    ***Since you're so intent with making this a personal issue, fine,
    -You had an in, a leg up, an advantage over the other applicants, most importantly you now have the job. Things like this happen every day, in all fields of work. There is no shame. Take care and good luck (sincerely).
     

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