Now that I've assisted a principal with hiring someone...

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by BioAngel, Jun 7, 2012.

  1. BioAngel

    BioAngel Science Teacher - Grades 3-6

    Oct 11, 2007
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    Jun 7, 2012

    I just wanted to share some tips on how we chose our candidate (we did narrow it down to one person, but we're calling in another person who just sent in his resume). This is the first time I've ever done anything like this and while my principal will make the final decision, it was an interesting process.

    Some tips:
    1) Gear your whole resume towards that position that you're applying to. If the person had no math experience (this is for a math position) they were automatically dumped. Some teachers clearly created a stretch in some cases, but you could tell they took the time to tweak their resume to fit the needs of our school and the position.

    2) Don't bother with the objective, but make sure that if you do put one it's like one or two sentences. We had one person write a LONG paragraph with as many adjectives as she could come up with and use as much teacher lingo as possible and it was just a turn off to us. (Long as in probably 8 sentences) And it's nice if you tweak the objective to meet that position-- we had one resume that had the wrong school name in it (and that was automatically tossed out).

    3) Cover letters are soo helpful! We really liked the ones that showed what the teachers do besides teach. The one candidate that we want to hire talked a bit about his ministry work and volunteer positions. The second candidate we're looking at explained about how he started bringing his students to math competitions. Yes, this was on their resumes too, but it was nice to read a bit about what they do besides their teaching.

    4) Please make sure you check over your spelling and grammar. And don't get overly personal in your contacts: I had one person write an email where words were skipped and he talked about how he was caring for his mother who recently died (gave the actual date) and said he was "now free". :dizzy: I'm sorry to hear she passed away, but it's not very caring to say you're free to now do what you want to (and I would not want a person like that teaching my child).

    As for the demo lesson: one person used the SmartBoard and it took them 20 minutes to set up because of a tech glitch. Which happens, we get that-- however, please remember that should this happen to you, DO SOMETHING during that time. Switch to a different activity. This person just stood there trying to fix the smartboard and lost half a period. She clearly rushed through her lesson after that and did not periodically check in with the students to make sure they were understanding.

    The candidate who we want to possibly hire, however, did not get over focused with using technology, though he did use some. What was awesome was that he geared his lesson to that week's events going on at our school (field day) and used many real life examples to get students to understand the concepts. He also used word problems, which we love since we're trying to increase reading comprehension for when our students take standardized tests. Finally, he made sure to have students assess their learning throughout the whole lesson and he gave them positive feedback to help them improve if they were having problems. My principal really wanted to see someone who would do that: constantly assess if the students were understanding what was being taught. :thumb:

    I hope this can help some of you who are going through the interviewing process right now. It was a real eye opener for me to see the "behind the scenes" of the interviewing process. Even seeing all the different ways that people write their resumes was interesting.
  3. Teacher Chele

    Teacher Chele Habitué

    Jul 3, 2007
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    Jun 7, 2012

    This is a wonderful help!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thanks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We need more posts from people with the "inside scoop!"
  4. sevenplus

    sevenplus Connoisseur

    Aug 3, 2006
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    Jun 7, 2012

    I was on an interviewing committee this year, too. I am not comfortable giving any details that could allow the candidates to recognize themselves from this post. However I can add this:

    If you don't have much experience with something, it's okay to say that. We hired a new teacher who admitted the things that she had not yet had experience with when they came up in the questions. I appreciated the honesty.

    If your prior position was in a different grade level, make sure you still talk about what you would do in the position you are interviewing for. We had a candidate that had taught a grade several levels away from what we were interviewing for and answered all questions in light of her current grade. At the end of the interview I was not at all convinced that she would be successful in the new position.

    Portfolios were not necessary. However, if you bring one (or work samples), show them when applicable to questions you are asked instead of at the end of the interview.

    Dress professionally!!!

    It's okay to be nervous. It's expected.
  5. Rosebud9802

    Rosebud9802 Rookie

    Jul 7, 2010
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    Jun 7, 2012

    THANKS SO MUCH for the great advice!! I love the suggestion about the cover letter.

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