I've got 2 MASTERS degrees and can't find a job PLEASE HELP!!!!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by 2masters@nojob, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. 2masters@nojob

    2masters@nojob Rookie

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    Jul 30, 2007

    I have a Master's degree in Rhetoric and Composition, and I am completing an MAT elementary program. I have been teaching college composition and developmental courses part-time for the past 4 years, I substitute taught for 1 year, and I took over a high school English position for 1/2 of last school year. I have submitted my application to schools in three counties, but have only gotten one call for an interview. What can I do to market my skills and experience?
     
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  3. teacherece

    teacherece Cohort

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    Jul 30, 2007

    Wow...what grade are you looking to teach? Most schools looking for a new teacher won't hire someone who alread has their masters' because it puts them way to far laterally on the scale. I'm waiting to get tenure before starting my program. Good luck though!
     
  4. collteach

    collteach Comrade

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    Jul 30, 2007

    Several of my professors in college warned us about having "too much" education prior to acquiring our first teaching position. Perhaps you need to have some elementary teachers look at your resume' and help you with a mock interview to see if there are areas in which you could improve for the elementary market. The fact that you taught college and high school may actually work against you. I have met several teachers who went from high school to elementary, and most were fabulous, but a few expected their elementary students to be like little adults. That could make some principals nervous, as there is a huge difference between teaching at the secondary level and the elementary level. Heck, I moved down from 7th grade to 4th grade and it was a big change.

    Have you sent your resume' and cover letters to all schools you are interested in interviewing with? Is it possible to visit schools with those things in hand? I truly think that you need to be sure to give the principals a sense of who you are, so they are not just looking at those degrees and thinking about the bottom line $$$.
     
  5. 2masters@nojob

    2masters@nojob Rookie

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    It is a good idea to get elementary teachers to look at my resume. Is it ethical to remove information from my resume? I think it is sad when you have to dumb yourself down to get a job. :mellow: I know that I still have a lot to learn in the classroom. I disliked the time I spent in a high school class (and I was only emergency certified for the position).

    One other question: how do you avoid saying too much in an interview? :huh: It is hard to decipher when they want a short answer and when you should elaborate.
     
  6. Miss_J

    Miss_J Habitué

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    Jul 30, 2007

    I don't think you can or should hide your education from a potential employer, but it is the same where I live. THere are a lot of people going for each position, and they want to best and cheapest. A masters degree shoots my pay up almost 10,000 a year. They do not like to start with people at that level. That being said, my best friend at work was hired with her masters. They just liked her that much! She is very organized and straight and clear with all questions. So, it is possible. just keep working for it.

    As far as the interview questions, I just finished interviewing people in our district and we did not have the problem of people talking too much, it was actually the opposite. We wanted to hear more than the buzz words, we wanted to hear examples of what you have done or what you are going to do. I suggest backing every buzzword up with a short example. We did tell people at the start of the interview to keep answers to 3 minutes or less, but 3 minutes is a lot longer than you would think. Most of them did not take even 1/2 the time to answer.
     
  7. Research_Parent

    Research_Parent Cohort

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    Jul 31, 2007

    Okay, so here's a case when you probably want to move your educational qualifications to the bottom of your resume and spend the majority of your resume talking about your experience working with kids and in classroom(s).

    Yes, its nice that you have LOTS of education/training that qualifies you to teach. We know you have the training, so switch the emphasis on your resume.

    No, you don't have to dumb it down, merely change the highlights.
     
  8. Lyquidphyre

    Lyquidphyre Comrade

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    Jul 31, 2007

    It's at that point in the summer where spots are full and openings hard to find- it might not have anything to do with your education! Start calling elementary schools to ask about open positions and email principals with your resume and your interest in the school. For example, "Dear Mr. XXX, I was wondering if you had any XXX openings. If so, I would love to set up and interview. Attached is my resume and letter of intent" and if they get an opening they are going to, hopefully, remember that email instead of just going to the candidate pool. You just have to be aggressive =o)
     
  9. jenejoy

    jenejoy Companion

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    Jul 31, 2007

    That's a tough one. I would agree with how you present yourself on your resume is a Biggie but it's also pretty late in the game to be looking. Typically at least here on the West Coast you need to make yourself known starting in January and February. Most of our Districts positions are gone for new hires by the beginning of April. I would start personally introducing yourself to various principals at school you are interested in by walking in a new resume that includes a photo for later reference and by being willing to sub where you want to work. Use every sub position as a job interview and try to be seen and meet people in the know. This of course is assuming that you do not have a job by the start of the year but it is amazing how getting yourself out there when the rush is over helps land a future position. Hang in there and good luck! By the way have you thought of moving to a different area. I had to move to California when I started teaching because it was difficult to land a position in Oregon. Just a thought, don't know your situation.
     
  10. Lyquidphyre

    Lyquidphyre Comrade

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    Jul 31, 2007

    I've always heard photos are ONLY for use in the fine arts (acting, singing, dancing), in any other case it looks weird. But, I do agree about subbing =o)
     
  11. jenejoy

    jenejoy Companion

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    Jul 31, 2007

    Well my Mom is a Principal and she has hired several teachers who's resume wouldn't have stood out unless they had a small photo attached. When I was looking for a job several years ago I was told exactly what you just said and from several of Mom's colleagues I was told that if I have made personal contact with a Principal a photo was welcomed to help distinguish myself from other applicants. People typically remember faces not names, especially when the name is only on a piece of paper. It may not be for everyone but it definitely worked for me and few other people I know. Go figure, I guess it's worth the risk if you don't have much to lose.
     
  12. Lyquidphyre

    Lyquidphyre Comrade

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    I guess if it is when you make personal contact with the person then it wouldn't be as strange.. but I think to just have a picture attached in an email (or as an image on your resume) would be a little odd =o)
     
  13. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    Jul 31, 2007

    I did a Masters Cert Program, and everyone I know that I went to school with is teaching. They were all hired with a Masters and are just fine. I don't know if it's a money issue-- if they like you they will hired you.

    When I was job searching, I put together a color photo page, and included a brief explanation of each picture. It talked about me, my philosophy, units I developed, etc. I made about 2 dozen of these, and sent one with every application. I got several interviews that way-- but was not hired. I got my first job at a job fair... which you should check out if they have them in your area. When I got my current job, I actually created a portfolio and sent it in with the cover letter. Sometimes you need to go above the rest.
     
  14. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    Jul 31, 2007

    There is a spot on our local systems application for a photo. I put a photo on mine and got an interview because the principal remembered me from substituting years before. I have been on a couple of interview panels and agree that we want to hear more than buzz words but don't drone on and on. We interviewed on guy that just about put me to sleep. I wondered how he would ever keep the attention of middle school students.
     
  15. paperheart

    paperheart Groupie

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    Jul 31, 2007

    In my area a Masters is not a deterrent in most cases, at least if you have teaching experience. I will say we did have one guy when I was on the interviewing panel that was going for his Masters and taking a year off from teaching after half a year of teaching. It sort of raised a flag as to why this man just stopped teaching. He couldn't really explain why AND his other answers made us think he wasn't very competent (i.e. "my last class was very talkative and I don't think there is much you can do about that." )

    One thing that I noticed was some people are far too formal and stiff when they are interviewing. They didn't show any personality so you couldn't get a sense of what their students would experience in the classroom. I'm sure they were just nervous and trying their best, understandably, but that was a major deterrent to them not getting hired.

    Are you open to a job in an area of need: at an low-achieving school, high demand subject (math, etc.)? That would up your chances.
     

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