Job interview tomorrow

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by Rhesus, Apr 6, 2014.

  1. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 6, 2014

    First one of the hiring season:)

    Unfortunately, it is in the middle of the day so I have to take the day off to go. I hate how this works out, because I always feel slightly deceitful and neglectful of my responsibilities to my current school. That's how it goes, though. I do not feel comfortable telling my principal that I am interviewing because there is a long-standing culture of administrative hostility towards teachers who are known to be considering other positions.

    I like my current school, but it is very far. This job is at a school 40 minutes from home, which is a huge improvement over the 80-90 minute drive to my current school.

    Last year I had several interviews, and I felt that my experience and advanced degrees were a liability. This is a financially healthy district, so maybe that won't work against me.
     
  2.  
  3. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,662
    Likes Received:
    1,588

    Apr 6, 2014

    Good luck!
     
  4. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    13,982
    Likes Received:
    1,797

    Apr 6, 2014

    Fingers crossed for you!
     
  5. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2007
    Messages:
    2,691
    Likes Received:
    460

    Apr 6, 2014

    Good luck!
     
  6. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 6, 2014

    Thanks for the well-wishes. I interview pretty well and confidently, so I'm not too worried about that. My concern is that being mid-career and fairly highly credentialed, I'm an expensive hire and undesirable for that reason.

    The position is to replace a retirement. I would be the only teacher of my subject in the school.

    Also, I always feel duplicitous and somewhat sneaky - and therefore guilty - when interviewing because of the attitude at my school about such things. Teachers have been preemptively non-renewed in the past when it was known they were looking.
     
  7. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2013
    Messages:
    199
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 6, 2014

    Good luck! It seems pretty unfair that your school would be that way considering the insane commute you have, but I guess I could see it from their point of view as well.

    It does always seem to be a big question on whether school districts want you because you are highly qualified or don't becuase you are expensive. Hopefully it works out for you since the district is financially healthy!
     
  8. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 6, 2014


    It's a parochial school where I am right now, and they tend to take it personally and get resentful when someone leaves. It is like you are betraying their mission or something. Therefore, I feel the need to be discreet until a contract is signed, but I don't like sneaking around. I like working at the school, but the commute is long and the pay is short.
     
  9. Kangaroo22

    Kangaroo22 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Messages:
    6,216
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 6, 2014

    Good luck!
     
  10. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    7,075
    Likes Received:
    15

    Apr 6, 2014

    Good luck!
     
  11. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 7, 2014

    Okay, just got back from the interview.

    It was just a quick, screening-type of interview. The interviewers were the world language district coordinator, an assistant principal, the retiring teacher I'd be replacing, and a high school senior from the program I'd be teaching.

    They asked fairly ordinary questions, and I got the impression that they'd have me back for round two.

    I was not given the chance to ask many questions myself, so I have not had a chance yet to really formulate an opinion about the job one way or the other. Interviews work in both directions, after all. It does seem like a good school that is supportive of its language programs.
     
  12. ScienceEd

    ScienceEd Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Messages:
    237
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 7, 2014

    :) hope you post when you hear back from the school :)
     
  13. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 8, 2014

    I was called back today for round two. I'm supposed to teach a demo to a senior honors class on Monday.:thumb: they also contacted my references.

    They wanted me to come again this week, but I very politely and apologetically explained that I really cannot easily take two days off in the same week at my current school like that, but I am on spring break next week (and they are in session). They were most understanding and accommodating.

    I am waiting now to receive some info about the class I'm supposed to teach.
     
  14. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    165

    Apr 8, 2014

    That's great! Good luck!
     
  15. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2007
    Messages:
    17,362
    Likes Received:
    46

    Apr 9, 2014

    Good luck!
     
  16. Kangaroo22

    Kangaroo22 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2008
    Messages:
    6,216
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 10, 2014

    Good luck!
     
  17. chemnerd19

    chemnerd19 Companion

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    106
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 11, 2014

    Good luck! :) I will be praying! :) Keep us updated if you wish.
     
  18. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 11, 2014

    My round two demo lesson on Monday has been rescheduled for Tuesday. NBD, gives me more time to recover from chaperoning the prom tomorrow...

    When I was given the particulars for the demo lesson, I was kind of shocked. This is for a foreign language position. The material I am supposed to cover in an honors level 4 senior class is what is typically covered in a level 2 sophomore class in any comparable high school - they are two years behind! It does not at all gel with the school's program of studies description either.

    Red flag?

    How do I broach this matter (and yes, it must be broached) without sounding like I am trashing their program? The current teacher, whom I'd be replacing due to his imminent retirement, is part of the interview committee which makes things even more awkward. I can't very well insinuate that he's not doing his job, even if that seems so.
     
  19. charlottesome

    charlottesome Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 11, 2014

    If you want the job, don't broach the subject. Just do a good job on the demo!
     
  20. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 11, 2014

    I would be the only teacher in the school of my subject. I feel like I need to know what they expect out of this program and where they want it to be or go. Knowing that would determine if I want the job or not, because I would not be satisfied teaching under par.
     
  21. ayla

    ayla Companion

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Messages:
    137
    Likes Received:
    1

    Apr 11, 2014

    I had an interview at a private school that turned out the same. See how the kids are. The kids I taught at this demo were supposed to be on grade level 4th graders and were lower than my 3rd grade RTI students. After the interview I immediately emailed and said I was not interested anymore!!!
     
  22. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 12, 2014

    If the kids are good, and if the admin understands they have a problem, and if they are all sincerely committed to having it spruced up, and if they do not low-ball me on the salary schedule, I could still be interested.

    The hard parts will be (a) Bringing up the issues inoffensively, and (b) gauging the sincerity of their responses.
     
  23. cheeryteacher

    cheeryteacher Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2006
    Messages:
    2,237
    Likes Received:
    9

    Apr 12, 2014

    I don't think I would bring it up. It's possible that they are giving you a topic that is so basic because if you can't teach that then you would not be a good fit.
    It's also possible that the teacher that is retiring has let the kids slide and the admin didn't notice the difference, especially with it being a foreign language.

    If you do decide to bring it up, tread lightly. You wouldn't want to offend the retiring teacher and he gives you a bad review. Also, you need to remember that as the only teacher for the language you will have a lot of freedom to shape the program. If the program isn't up to standards it may be a challenge to bring it up, but the revamping phase would only last a few years. I would be more concerned whith whether the school was a good fit and a place I could see myself at for years to come.
     
  24. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2014

    Cheeryteacher has good advice. I'm going to have to ferret information out more subtly, I guess. I'm going to ask questions like:

    1. Are you satisfied with the current program?

    2. Where would you like to see this program in the next couple of years?

    3. My vision of such a program and the way that I've always conducted mine is by doing xyz. Does xyz fit in with your school's vision?


    What do you think of that approach?
     
  25. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    May 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,662
    Likes Received:
    1,588

    Apr 14, 2014

    I don't think I would ask the first question if the present teacher is on the interview committee.
     
  26. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2014

    Right. That one only comes out (maybe) if he's not participating in this round. I got the impression that the district level coordinator understands that things aren't as they should be.
     
  27. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    165

    Apr 14, 2014

    I think question 2 is fine. But I wouldn't ask 1 and 3.

    Why not ask something like, What do you anticipate the next teacher in the role would add/bring to the program? Or ask how much creative freedom would you allow someone in this role since you'll be the only teacher in the subject.

    Then maybe restate question 3 and say some of the things you envision for the future and is this something they foresee happening. But leave out the part of this is how you've done things.

    I totally get that you want to work at a school that aligns with your vision but you don't want to come off as a know it all who will only accept the job if you can do things your way. It's very possible that the want "fresh ideas" but you need to tread lightly since the current teacher is on the hiring committee. I've shared "fresh and new" ideas at a team meeting once a few years ago and I ****** off a colleague who has taught for 30+ years because they were so set in their ways.
     
  28. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2014

    I get what you're saying, Bunnie, but I'm in a position to be kind of picky and I did once have a horrible experience years back where a program was presented to me one way and the reality was quite different, so it is important for me to have an accurate, honest presentation of the school's expectations. I have no problem politely walking away if I don't think this is a great fit, but I don't want to be an ass. I would not phrase things in an interview as bluntly as I am here, so I appreciate the suggestions for softening my questions up.

    The reason I wanted to ask question three was to indicate that I had experience delivering the sort of program that I think/hope they want. I like the way you rephrased it though, which sounds less arrogant than my version.
     
  29. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    165

    Apr 14, 2014

    I know what you mean. There are certain things as educators that we personally aren't willing to compromise on when it comes to what we think is our best fit. Especially since it seems you are pretty confident in your subject area and know what you want. My only other advice would be to take that confidence to sell yourself as the best candidate but definitely be softer in trying to find out if what you truly want in a school is what they are offering.

    Good luck and can't wait to hear how it goes!
     
  30. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    165

    Apr 14, 2014

    Also I liked they way you said you want an honest representation of the schools expectations. Maybe use that wording in your questioning.

    What are the schools expectations as a whole for the program looking forward to next year? Or something like that.
     
  31. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Messages:
    606
    Likes Received:
    130

    Apr 14, 2014

    Can you ask about the AP exam in your subject area? Do students take it, if they do, how many and what are the scores like? Do your current 4th year students take it now? That might be a way to edge into questions that will give you a feel for the rigor of the current program.
     
  32. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2014

    There is no AP level class offered at the school for my subject. They are doing two years of work in four years. I mean literally. The point the level 4 seniors are at is what sophs do in level 2. I am familiar with the book they are using and I cannot fathom how it could be stretched out like that. This is what had the wind up my back so badly.

    I did describe in the first interview how I teach my level 3 and 4 classes as dual enrollment courses for college credit though the flagship state university here (many schools in my state offer classes under this program along with AP). I said that I was strongly interested in continuing to do that wherever I go.
     
  33. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2011
    Messages:
    606
    Likes Received:
    130

    Apr 14, 2014

    I asked because at my daughter's school, seniors taking your subject take the AP exam after 4 years of study. I wasn't sure how common that was. It seems as if you know for certain that your subject is very decelerated at this school. In your shoes, I wouldn't broach the issue until an offer were made, then I would discuss the issue with a fair amount of candor with the principal.
     
  34. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 14, 2014



    What you describe is the way it conventionally is done in most schools; textbook work in level 1 and 2, then real, authentic literature in levels 3 and 4. Level 4 is often AP.

    The other foreign languages offered there (Spanish, French) have AP. My language there (Latin) does not, and never makes it beyond the year two textbook. I can improve this, but they have to want to.
     
  35. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 15, 2014

    Okay, so today was the second round. I went in and taught a demo lesson the to level 4 class, and that went well. I did my best to showcase a blend of teacher-directed instruction with monitoring some student work in pairs, and I integrated cultural material with the grammar lesson I was asked to present.

    However, I was frustrated that there was no Q&A time afterwards. I have questions to ask! I imagine they were busy with their daily duties.

    I've been called back for a third time tomorrow morning (thank goodness I have this week off) to meet the building principal. Maybe there will be some Q&A time then.

    The kids were nice in the class and in the halls during passing time. There was a pretty calm and cheerful vibe at the school.
     
  36. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    165

    Apr 15, 2014

    That's great! Did they tell you right after the demo to go in tomorrow or was that a phone call later in the day? Either way fingers crossed, it's looking good.

    On a side note I hate that they didn't just do the demo and meeting with the principal the same day. I mean what if you weren't on spring break?
     
  37. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 15, 2014

    They told me that they'd call today as I was leaving, and the principal's secretary called a couple of hours later. You are right, Bunnie, about spring break. Can you imagine taking all these days off from school for this?

    On a side note, shortly after I got home I saw a bobcat outside my kitchen window stalking our ducks and I had to chase it off. The school's mascot is the bobcat. An omen? :D
     
  38. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2009
    Messages:
    1,136
    Likes Received:
    165

    Apr 15, 2014

    Honestly it looks pretty good then, fingers crossed! They also might have interviewed other candidates last week when you weren't able to return and once they saw your demo they figured to ask you back ASAP since you are on spring break. Can't wait for the update tomorrow.

    A good omen indeed!
     
  39. Rhesus

    Rhesus Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2013
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    3

    Apr 16, 2014

    Well, I signed on. New job for Rhesus in the fall!:)

    I'll miss my current school, but I think this will be a good change for me.
     
  40. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    13,982
    Likes Received:
    1,797

    Apr 16, 2014

    Congrats, Rhesus!
     
  41. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    7,075
    Likes Received:
    15

    Apr 16, 2014

    Congratulations!
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. futuremathsprof
Total: 494 (members: 2, guests: 470, robots: 22)
test