Need suggestions for one particular district...

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by S Dubb, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. S Dubb

    S Dubb Comrade

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    Jul 3, 2007

    I have applied to many open positions in District X throughout the past month or so, but unfortunately for me all I have gotten back is an email saying that my application was reviewed, but I have not been chosen to continue in the process at this time. This is a pretty big district, and positions seem to open up more often than others I have seen, so I keep applying hoping that something will change.

    I have made phone calls to HR (not too many) and edited and re-edited my cover letter numerous times to fit the needs of the positions for which I am applying, but it has not seemed to help. Is there anything that I can do to better my chances with District X, or am I fighting a lost cause here?
     
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  3. TeacherRW

    TeacherRW Cohort

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    Jul 3, 2007

    Be patient and realistic. Many individuals on this board have interviewed several times and still haven't received an offer. Others have gotten dream jobs. When it is meant to be, it'll happen. You have started the communication link between yourself and the district. A couple of things that I would consider are emailing principals directly or sending a packet to them. Also, I would consider going into the main HR Dept and talk to the person who pulls files for principals. S/He might have some "in" for you should you impress them. When I got my job, I had already put in my time in the district subbing for almost 2 years. It was that subbing exposure that lead to my position-- I impressed the principal of the building for which I was completing a Maternity leave. He, in turn, gave a rousing recommendation for me to the hiring principal.

    Have you posted your resume or cover letter here to be revamped? Perhaps we could help you in that respect.
     
  4. Sterlingrio

    Sterlingrio Rookie

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    Jul 3, 2007

    I had that problem once too-- about not hearing back from a district with many openings, so I called and talked to the HR person, she let me know what was less than desireable in my file, or what I still needed.. i cleared the matter up with her, speaking to her directly helped-- next day I had a phone interview with a principal and got hired that day, sight unseen.
     
  5. S Dubb

    S Dubb Comrade

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    Jul 3, 2007

    That's certainly inspiring to hear, and I've been considering doing this myself as well. How did you word your question when you called? This is kind of a gutsy move I feel, and I want to make sure I do it correctly if I call.
     
  6. S Dubb

    S Dubb Comrade

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    Jul 3, 2007

    Thanks for the advice, but I'm not sure why you said to be realistic. I know landing a teaching job is different than most markets, but I'm watching positions fill up and I have yet to be called for an interview.

    Unfortunately District X's website stresses not to directly contact schools/principals regarding applications, and not to send in paper copies (the application is all online).

    I posted my original cover letter here and the community was indeed helpful. Today I re-wrote the bulk of my cover letter to be a tad less formal while still highlighting some points that I'd like known.
     
  7. Sterlingrio

    Sterlingrio Rookie

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    Jul 3, 2007

    It was a while back (8 yrs) I called the "recruiter" or HR person, and asked, "I noticed my friends were recieving letter of intent offers from the xxx (your) district, and I was wondering why I had not heard back from anyone regarding my application. Is there an area of concern that I can or need to address."

    As the lady proceeded to tell me the problem I began to fume and nearly cry as it turns out my "supervisor" who had only visited my classroom 5 times in 2 of the 3 years I worked at the school, did not give a nice telephone reference-- which I then pointed out to the hr person, that I did not know why my supervisor would do such a thing, basically as the super had wrote me a letter of rec. and also my evaluations from her were fine with no noted problems. So as the hr person listened, I further explained the working conditions under my super who had a bad telephone review of me-- i.e. I worked without lunch breaks because the principal or someone in the district reassigned my one para to full time bus driver, leaving me with a grandparent volunteer who I could not leave alone with the students as the vol. was a recovering alcoholic, in addition when I had a dr. appt, as subs were not available I would have to arrange with reg. classroom teachers to keep my students for the day--- i.e. lots of laws were being broken by the district-- and I was only in my 3rd yr of teaching. The HR person continued to listen as I informed her that I worked 3 yrs in the district at one campus under the direction of 2 different principals, 3 different APs, and 3 different special ed directors-- the year I left my campus- 60% of the teaching staff actually decided to leave, and the year before 50% of the midschool staff were all new hires. Nonetheless, and the last special ed director spent more time in my class in 7mths than the principal did in 2yrs... and the 3rd spec. ed dir. obtained her position by default-- she was the h.s. special ed teacher, but the 2nd spec ed director left about 3 mths into the start of the school year because of "bad blood" between her and upper admin. I could go on.. but why bore everyone reading this. :p

    Okay so more of a response than you bargined for but the bottom line was, I asked, and yes I was brave and stood up for myself as a teacher. Maybe I was lucky that the HR person was willing to listen, becuase I had lots to tell, and it was nice to get it off my chest considering the district union reps and state union reps when I asked about my rights to a duty free lunch and even bathroom breaks at times, did nothing to help.
     
  8. kidatheart

    kidatheart Habitué

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    Jul 3, 2007

    I think it spoke volumes that you continued to teach in that district with all that was going on around you - you stayed amidst all that turnover and gave your students some stability...
     
  9. Sterlingrio

    Sterlingrio Rookie

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    Jul 4, 2007

    Nice Response

    That is a really nice way of putting it. I guess I never really thought of it that deeply, but yep, that was it. Although the district only gave 1 year contracts, they asked for new hires to consider staying 3 years-- so I did... really, had they asked me for 4, I would have stuck it out as well-- for the students. One of the little ones got mad when I said he would have a new teacher the following yr. We knew who it was going to be-- so he kept on refering to the new teacher as my husband-- Mr. (my last name). It was cute.

    I have learned though, there is quiet a difference when working in districts that serve a severely low socio economic area-- it's sad, but the truth-- a gap still exists, and often it requires teachers who want the challenge of closing that gap. I should find a thread on teaching in low ses districts...

    later.
     
  10. S Dubb

    S Dubb Comrade

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    Jul 4, 2007

    Thanks so much for the input, Sterlingrio. I think you've given me the courage to call the district tomorrow. I'll post here to let you know how it goes. Wish me luck! :eek:
     
  11. terptoteacher

    terptoteacher Connoisseur

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    Jul 5, 2007

    I think Teacherrw said to be realistic because, just because you applied doesn't mean you'll get an inteview. I know people who have applied to every district around and only get one or two interviews a year-- if that!

    My friend applied to a district that had 67 postings for elementary teaching positions and has not received a call for an interview. They're down to 24 openings left.

    Another friend applied for a 5th grade opening in a VERY small rural district and there were over 54 applicants for the one opening.

    Hang in there!
     
  12. S Dubb

    S Dubb Comrade

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    Jul 5, 2007

    Gotcha. Of course I know that, but I guess I didn't make that clear in my original post. Believe me...if there was any doubt of me knowing that before, I've certainly learned the hard way within the past two months. ;)

    -----​

    ***FOLLOW UP PHONE CALL***

    So I called District X this morning (with butterflies in my stomach of course!). The HR secretary with whom I spoke was very nice. I told her that I was looking to move to the area and that District X is my first choice for districts (which is true). I then asked if there was anything in my application that I can or should address. Thanks again to Sterlingrio for the advice!

    She simply said that there probably isn't anything that I need to address/is "wrong" with my application, but they receive hundreds of applications for a position, and the principals from each school look over all the apps and call those that they believe would best fit with the school's policies/mission/etc.

    While I already knew the answer because it says so on the website (and I even told her this), I asked her if it would be inappropriate to directly contact a principal. She politely said that due to the sheer number of applications they get, it would be overwhelming if everyone contacted the principals. So basically she advised me not to. She did say to keep trying though, so that's what I'm going to do.

    If the HR secretary had told you not to contact the principals directly, what would you do with this advice?
     
  13. willsgirl

    willsgirl Comrade

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    Jul 5, 2007

    Hmmm...it may be out of your hands. If you can't "nudge" the princs., then maybe you've gone as far as you can go in that district. If you're stuff looks OK, per HR, you've asked for pointers (have you?), and you can't directly contact princs. (would a little, tiny email hurt?), then you could begin looking elsewhere, broaden your search. You may not get the district you want, but you may get somthing. And that's a start for the future. BTW, how do you "keep trying" under the above circumstances?
     
  14. Sterlingrio

    Sterlingrio Rookie

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    Jul 16, 2007

    What to do-- know anyone on the schoolboard-- as they can nudge HR ;) That was recently my luck as well, I had incidently met a local schoolboard member who gave me his business card, and said if I was interested in working in "his" district, give him a call... well I applied in the District, then called to let him know I had applied. He then requested I email him my resume and he would make sure HR got it that week-- the following day HR called and set up an interview with me.

    So, unfortunately, but fortuante for me, it becomes a "who you know"-- this is also how I got my student teaching internship-- having worked for a former schoolboard member-- he told me of a student teaching position, and said to mention when I apply that he refered me, and I could use him as a refrence.

    Also, on your application and resume- see if you can update it with HR and maybe revamp philosophy, and maybe some other responses to fit the school mission and needs more-- read the individual schools websites to see their mission statements and program goals. Key words in applications and resumes get noticed--maybe that will help.
     

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