Options for improving my chances

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by otterpop, Jun 8, 2014.

  1. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Jun 8, 2014

    I recently graduated with an MAT: Elementary Ed. (PreK-6). I'm on the west coast and the area where I am is super saturated. I would love a job but pretty much have zero hopes of getting one. So, I'm wondering what others think about these options as far as increasing my hireabilty in this area in future years:

    1. Move to another area where I can obtain an elementary teaching job
    2. Substitute teach in the area I want to be in
    3. Take a (much) lower paying preschool/PreK/private kindergarten teaching job in the area where I'm located

    I have pros and cons associated with each one and feel so undecided. I really want my own classroom, but people tell me that substituting is the best way to get into a district. However, I'm in a highly competitive area, typically 100+ applicants per job, and I just don't know how useful it will be. There are people who have been substituting and waiting for jobs for years, or laid off teachers who will be the next to be hired.

    This is all pretty much rambling, because I know that all of the above options are viable, but I'm curious how others would handle the situation. There are so many people in a similar boat, but it doesn't make it any easier to accept. I went to school for so long working up to this point, and now I'm here, it seems I'll never get to do what I wanted do all along. I know I'm a great candidate, but the problem is, there are a lot of great candidates out there!
     
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  3. Flanny108

    Flanny108 Rookie

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    Jun 8, 2014

    I was in a similar situation quite a few years ago and took the option to move to another state. I know friends that I graduated with took several years to get jobs, so it seemed like the right decision. I will tell you that moving away from my family has been very difficult. I am 6 hours away and miss them terribly. I have a life here now, so there's no going back. If you are close to your family, I would stay to just stay put and try some substitute teaching and hope that it turns into a regular position.

    If you are a free spirit and want to move, I think now is probably the best time to do it.

    I wouldn't take a lower paying position. I have been out of work for two years, and in all of my interviews they wanted to hire me back for the grade that I taught last, which I was not fond of. I'd be worried that principals would see you are experienced as a preschool teacher and not want to interview for an elementary position because all of your experience is with the little ones.

    Good luck!
     
  4. DressageLady

    DressageLady Comrade

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    Jun 8, 2014

    I really can't speak to the options of moving or taking a lower paying position. But I can speak to the option of using substitute teaching as a way to get your foot in the door.

    Here, in my area, subs are not hired to fill permanent positions. It happens once in a blue moon, but I have spoken with a lot of subs over the past couple of years and they all tell me that subbing has not helped them land a permanent, contracted position. So my advice would be to speak to subs in your area and find out from them how much upward mobility they have in your area. If landing a permanent job is your goal, find out if your local subs see that happening.

    Good luck!
    Sheilah
     
  5. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Jun 8, 2014

    If you're willing to move to a "less desirable" area, that's your best option. I don't think pre-K would do anything for your resume, and like others said I haven't typically seen subs hired for permanent positions. I teach in CO and the rural areas of the state are desperate for teachers. Of course you'd have to be willing to live in a rural area of the state, haha. I'm in Denver now but I taught in the mountains for two years to build up my resume before moving to a better location. I enjoyed my school a lot , but it was tough because I didn't have much of a life outside of school. My only friends were coworkers (there simply wasn't anyone else out there, haha) and most were married with children while I was fresh out of college at 22. I don't regret it though because I don't think I would have been able to really start my career otherwise. Now I work in a good district AND I love where I live and have tons of friends outside of school. My district pretty much will not hire first year teachers, so working here wouldn't have been a possibility if I hadn't have started somewhere else to get some experience. Even places 2 hours outside of Denver don't get a lot of applicants. I remember seeing those districts at job fairs and they'd be practically begging candidates to come over to their tables while the Denver districts had lines wrapped all the way around the room.

    The other thing to think about is how close you are with family that lives locally. I personally only went home for major holidays in college (worked at a residential camp in the summers, so not even then), so my set up now is not that different even though I'm much further away. If you're the type to be home every weekend/go home for every birthday, sporting event, etc. it just wouldn't work for you. I had friends like that in college and they chose to stay in our home state, which I think was the right decision for them because I don't see them "making it" far away from family. However, they're all still subbing or working in positions outside of our original certification.
     
  6. PrincessDaisy

    PrincessDaisy Rookie

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    Not only that, in my experience people have asked me "If you don't get the job would you being willing to the building sub?". I always want to scream NO. Of course doing that will get your chances taken away. The only teaching interview I got where I was hired, the interview also asked me that. I agree with others. Subbing isn't the way to go.

    If you can afford it, I would work in a prek/private prek. I feel people who have that experience are more likely to get a job than someone who just subbed. Like true story I know someone who was a prek teacher in an Abbott prechool for five years who got hired for a 6th grade position over the sub who was covering who was also certified. Something similar happened to me. I was the building sub in school and mostly covered prek and am p-3 certified and was skipped over for an alt. route "teacher". :mad: Subs are mostly seen as garbage, Why I refuse to sub ever again.
     
  7. otterpop

    otterpop Phenom

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    Jun 9, 2014

    I can't tell you all how grateful I am to get the thoughtful responses! Thank you for sharing your experiences. :)

    In my state, I think subs have more respect than in other places, because there are no fewer requirements for substitutes than regular teachers. You can't teach with any college diploma or anything like that, you have to be fully licensed. Subs do get hired... it could just take a while.

    I talked with my SO last night and he would be up for moving to a more rural part of the state. He's the main reason that I worry about moving to a smaller area, because there aren't a lot of career options for him there, but I can search for rural areas within 45 minutes or so of a larger town (population ~20,000+; it's what I would want, anyway). I think it could be a good option . Another state would be okay too - there isn't much difference in my mind between an 8 hour car ride and a 2-3 hour plane ride as far as convenience goes for visiting family.
     
  8. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Jun 9, 2014

    I don't know how far you want to move, but central Florida has just begun hiring and they hire hundreds of teachers every summer. There would possibly be good job prospects for your SO, also.
     
  9. Flanny108

    Flanny108 Rookie

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    I guess it really depends on your area. I got my job from a long term sub, and so did a very good friend of mine.
     
  10. heatherewf

    heatherewf Rookie

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    Jun 9, 2014

    If you can move, do it. I would if I could - a lot of girls I graduated with found jobs in other states very easily and here I am, still searching nearly 4 years later.

    I took a job as a tutor in an elementary school. Unfortunately, my district is closing an elementary school and RIFFing teachers. However, the principal understands my desire to find a teaching job and offered to be a reference for me. She also sat down with me to do a mock interview and critique my interview answers, as well as provided suggestions of how to explain my position to give powerful answers on interviews. So, this position has turned into a great resource to help me get a job. If you can find something like that in a district where you want to work, you will have access to those resources and in addition, you'll have the ability to apply for internal job postings. Yes, it pays less than a full time job, BUT it pays more than subbing while still getting your name and face in the school every day. Good luck!
     

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