Job Offer//So nervous

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by Sab, Jul 25, 2017.

  1. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Jul 25, 2017

    After doing about 14 interviews, I finally got a job offer via email today...I emailed back accepting and the principal said he would give HR my info and they'd get the hiring process started right away. I'm still trying not to be too excited until I sign a contract! And I'm stressing out soooooo much. I honestly was not expecting to get this job at ALL. I almost didn't go to the interview because I felt like I'd have no chance at this school.
    I feel so unprepared and panicked about everything. This would be my first year teaching. I've only student taught in elementary, and this is middle school. Does anyone have tips on that? How do you do the seating chart? Or do you let students sit where they want?
    Also, I've been staying with my parents until I figure out where I find a job, but the commute would be 2.5 hours from here! I obviously need to move, but it's already almost August! I'm worried I won't be able to find a place, and the area is soooooo expensive. I should probably start looking but I don't want to sign a lease before signing the contract and I'm just stressed about finding something affordable.
    Is there anything I should ask before signing the contract? Should I ask about induction? At this point I feel like I'd have to take it whether they cover induction or not, though. I don't even know exactly how many classes I'd be teaching or whether I'd have a prep! How should I expect the contract signing to go? Will I have time to take it home and read it or will they just call me in to sign there? When after that would I likely get the curriculum? I don't even know how to begin planning my first year.
    I know this is long, I just needed to vent a bit. Any advice about any aspects of this would be appreciated! And for anyone still searching - go to all interviews even if you think getting the job is a long shot!
     
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  3. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    Jul 25, 2017

    Congratulations!!

    How big is the district? When you go to sign, ask HR if there is a new teacher orientation. If you are in California, most districts offer BTSA (induction) but at some smaller districts it may be offered through the county. You have several years to complete it, so don't fret about that just yet. Typically you go and sign your contract, rather then take it home. In my district you also learn about your benefit options at the same time, and those you usually take home and read through, then submit the completed paperwork later.

    Access to the curriculum and which preps you will teach will generally come from your principal. Perhaps send him/her an email after you've signed the contract. Or before if you are worried. Your interview usually gives you a good idea of what they expect you to teach.

    You might want to look for a room to rent, rather than your own apartment, to start. Do you know anyone out that way to help you with making connections?

    I am also a middle school teacher. I believe very strongly in assigned seating from Day 1.
     
  4. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Jul 25, 2017

    It's a pretty big district. I'll definitely ask for curriculum as soon as I sign the contract...just waiting to hear from HR so I know when that will be. They didn't go over exactly what I would be teaching at the interview as when I went it was actually for a different position, then they told me they had this position available, but said they'd keep the questions open-ended so I could be talking about either rather than specific subjects. Is what exactly I'm teaching going to be in the contract? And I will definitely take a room, I don't think I'd be able to afford my own apartment! Don't know many people in the area though so I'll be checking Craigslist. Just worried about how quickly the beginning of the school year is approaching and how much I have to do before then! And I'll feel so much better once I sign so I know for sure.
    When you assign seating in middle school, do you just have students stand around the edge of the room and read each name as you show them their spot? How often do you change it up?
     
  5. nyjets88

    nyjets88 Rookie

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    Jul 25, 2017

    Can't help with most since I just got a job too and am signing my contract next week, so I have some of the same questions.

    But for seating, yes at least start with assigned seating. It can depend on the school. When I student taught middle school i had no assigned seats and had very few problems, but it was also an affluent district. In my LTS job in a much more diverse district not having assigned seats would have been disaster. As the year went on I tried letting the kids pick their seats in my advanced, and by far best behaved class, and while that wasn't terrible I still didn't really like it and made new seats the next day.

    Edit:
    There are programs you can make a seating chart on and then just project it to the class. If you use powerschool you can do it right in there. I usually changed them up once a month
     
  6. LouiseB

    LouiseB Cohort

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    Jul 25, 2017

    Be happy you got a job! I would start looking in areas around where you will teach for housing. You might want to contact the principal to see if he has any ideas for housing. When does school start?

    I want to assure you that most people feel overwhelmed with landing their first job. You have some added stress because you are at a different grade level than you thought and you will have to move. There is time to move and time to get what needs to be done. What will you be teaching at middle school?
    I'm glad that things have worked out for you.
     
  7. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Jul 25, 2017

    First thing...take a deep breath!
    Now, start a to-do list. Order your list from immediate most necessary to things that can wait a while.
    When you sign your contract, ask if they have curriculum plans and other things you may need.
    Be careful with craigslist...just be careful.
    You could check with the P and see if any teachers are looking for a roommate...you could also look into extended stay hotels.
    And...congratulations!!!
     
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  8. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Thanks guys! I'll be teaching science and math! I'm excited cause I love those subjects but a bit worried because I don't have too much experience with teaching science. I got to do it a little during my student teaching but we had like 30 mins a day for it (when we weren't doing social studies units) and no real equipment, so pretty different than having it be one of my main subjects and being able to teach in a place where there's a science lab!!
     
  9. hellokimmie84

    hellokimmie84 Rookie

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    Jul 25, 2017

    Congrats!! I know this has been a long journey for you! I signed my contract a week after the verbal offer. I think it all depends on how organized the HR department is, hopefully, they will be quick about it. Mine went over everything, pay, benefits, union dues, and orientations that I have to go to starting next week. Bigger districts should cover inductions.

    In regards to seating, I personally would do assigned seating in middle school. Otherwise, it can be hard to take back control when they're around certain peers. With housing, search areas within 30 mins the school you'll be teaching. Plan accordingly since I think most California districts are paid at the end of each month, and make sure you verify with HR whether you will get paid at the end of Aug or the end of September. Keep us updated on the process!
     
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  10. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Jul 27, 2017

    Still haven't heard from HR...I know it's only been like 2 days, but would it be acceptable to email the principal tomorrow and ask when I should expect to hear? I'm looking at places in the area on Sunday and just want to be sure to get the contract done before signing a lease!
    Should I ask anything else in the email? What the curriculum is and how to get it? What classes exactly I'll be teaching?? Or will that be in the contract and I'll just seem really annoying and over-eager bugging the principal about it now?

    Okay right after I posted that I got an email! It says to consider the email "confirmation of my acceptance" and asks that I do not continue to interview with any schools or districts. Then it also says their credentials team may reach out to me in the near future to confirm my eligibility to serve this role, afterwards I should get an email about next steps, and let them know if I don't hear anything within the next couple weeks...Also school starts the FIFTEENTH OF AUGUST omg I'm freaking out. Should I email the principal and ask for curriculum/class keys etc or just wait for this HR process to be official???
     
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2017
  11. Bunnie

    Bunnie Devotee

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    Jul 27, 2017

    Contact HR tomorrow. After you speak to HR contact your principal regarding all your other questions.
     
  12. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Jul 28, 2017

    The principal signed me up for a content workshop and connected me with a co-teacher over email, so I am feeling more confident about the offer, though I am still anxious to get the contract done with and super super nervous for my first year! Have a lot to do in the next couple weeks...
     
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  13. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Aug 5, 2017

    I just got an email from the district and I'm so stressed

    I have trainings Wednesday through Saturday next week, then Monday-Friday the following week, and school starts the next Monday.

    There's like 5 million things this email is telling me to do before school starts, like get a TB test, get fingerprinted in their district office, etc etc and I literally feel like I have no time at all, Monday and Tuesday I guess are the last business days I'll even have free before school. Also the email says there will be new teacher orientations then but they're optional and registration is already closed!!! I would like to go because I have no idea how to do anything but I can't!!! And these sound like useful trainings like on induction, the attendance system, the grading system, etc while most of my other ones are on content which is good too but I feel like I need new teacher help and I'm not going to know how to do anything. Also they want me to come sign my contract during one of my trainings on Wednesday. I don't even know what exact classes I'm teaching yet and I haven't even been able to find a place in the area so my commute is going to be ridiculous. I feel like I have no time to set up my classroom or plan anything. I'm sooo overwhelmed, I have no idea how to handle all of this; I so wish I'd gotten hired earlier in the summer
     
  14. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Isn't like a 2 hour commute? I would look at renting a hotel room from a hotel where you can rent by the week that has kitchenettes in the rooms. That way you can stay after your trainings to work on your room, etc.

    Contact your principal and see if they can get you into one of the new teacher orientations. Oftentimes, closed sessions can be reopened for late hires.
     
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  15. Sab

    Sab Companion

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    Yes! I have a relative slightly closer I can stay with but will still be like a bit over an hour, and I don't know when exactly I can move in with them. I might look into Airbnbs or sublets in the area too. I just can't afford to spend much on that right now!
    And even though I would like to go to the new teacher orientations, because those are the last business days I have free before school starts I probably need to go get fingerprinting and TB tests and stuff done those days!
    I just feel so unprepared, but I can't even really plan right now because I don't know all the classes I'm teaching, don't have any curriculum and don't know anything really about teaching at the school. I'm also nervous to teach some of the content because I feel like I probably need a lot of review. The person who was in this position before me had single subject science and math credentials and a BA in a science field, which I don't have.
     
  16. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    1. Find out hours for fingerprinting - they may have evening hours.
    2. You almost certainly could have had the TB test done this weekend, and maybe could still have it done tomorrow at some Urgent Care facility.
    3. Honestly, that new teacher orientation is REALLY important. Work to get yourself included. Being at the school for the orientation will make it easier to reach out to those who will be more informed about your content and curriculum needs. Don't reinvent the wheel. Don't get so distracted that nothing meaningful takes place.
    4. More important to get the classes completed and the training to sink in. Find out who your coworkers will be, and if they can offer a helping hand, point you in the right direction in the beginning.
    5. You say it is a big district - you almost certainly will not be the only one to be teaching your content. Use their expertise as a stepping stone into your own take on things. The first week in science can deal with a lot of broad spectrum inquiry activities that will cover virtually any science you cover. I don't teach math, so you'll have to get someone else to help you with that.
    6. The school knows what you do and do not have in ways of education. I would expect them to support you as you are learning - not forever, but while you are getting your bearings.
    7. Will you have a mentor? If so, reach out to that person.
     
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  17. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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  18. Rainbowbird

    Rainbowbird Groupie

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    Aug 5, 2017

    Congratulations, and I second all of the great advice on here. I remember I was hired for my first job out of college 4 days before school began. Those 4 days included a weekend. I didn't have to worry about relocating, but the room I was to be teaching in was completely empty, save for a pile of boxes, new supplies yet to be unpacked, and the furniture pushed up against the wall. I enlisted the help of family and friends to get ready. If there is someone who can go with you I think it would make a big difference. While custodians can help with heavy lifting, there is so much to do that having one more person to do unpacking, organizing, bulletin boards, and even help you move furniture because inevitably, you're going to want to tweak things as you move about the room and get settled. Good luck and know that we've all been there. Even experienced teachers. I am moving grade levels and rooms this year, and OMG do I ever have a load of work waiting for me!
     
  19. AlwaysAttend

    AlwaysAttend Fanatic

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    Aug 5, 2017

    You can get a tb test at a CVS Minute clinic I think. Just remember you also need to go back a few days later so they can check it.
     
  20. Luv2TeachInTX

    Luv2TeachInTX Comrade

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    Aug 5, 2017

    First of all, congrats! Getting your first teaching job is an exciting time.

    As far as the content you're going to be teaching, if you know the subject and the grade level (say 6th grade science and math) all you have to do is look up the standards to get a general idea.

    Also, I would reach out to your principal ASAP and ask how soon you can get access to your room, when your schedule will be finalized and what it looks like, and where you can get access to the district pacing guides/curriculum.

    I would also take advantage of reaching out to one of your content coteachers as well, as they will be able to give you a lot of information about the school, culture, curriculum, etc.

    Congrats again!
     
  21. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    For math, take a look here at the Week of Inspirational Math activities. They are a great way to start you year--setting the stage for encouraging a growth mindset and collaborative problem-solving.
     
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