Question for Administrators!

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by tiffanys, Jul 28, 2008.

  1. tiffanys

    tiffanys Companion

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    Jul 28, 2008

    Hello,

    I have been on this forum for a while now and I have noticed that some administrators take part in the chit chat.

    If I could, I would like to pose a question to you all.

    What makes you give the candidate with no experience an interview?

    What is your advice to candidates with no experience?
     
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  3. USCgrad

    USCgrad Companion

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    Jul 28, 2008

    great questions.....and what kind of application packets stand out amongst the others??
     
  4. 4myclass

    4myclass Cohort

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    Jul 28, 2008

    What exactly are you looking for when you look through applications or when you interview?
     
  5. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    Jul 29, 2008

    I hope you do not mind me responding. I just received my administrative credential and am interviewing for those positions now. I have sat on our interview committees for the better part of seven years now.

    As for applications.....follow the instructions. Don't include more than what is necessary but don't leave items out either. If an applicant can't follow directions, they won't get an interview. Be direct and to the point. Always include a cover letter introducing yourself. In this letter, let your strengths shine through. Even if you don't have experience, your passion for this career will be evident.

    During the interview, make sure you are dressed in business attire. You would be amazed at how many applicants show up underdressed. Ladies, you should be in a skirt or slacks with a business jacket. Gentlemen, a suit. This is a very important part and is discussed by every panel I've ever sat on. I cannot tell you how many times we've said, "I liked him/her but why didn't he/she dress appropriately?? I wonder how he'd/she'd dress for class??"

    During the interview, make sure you answer the questions specifically. Bring a cheat sheet with you.....a clipboard with a paper on it that clearly states your answers to common questions that you know you will be asked (tell us about yourself, etc.). Don't write out your full answers, just jot down the buzz words to spur your memory. Refer to this cheat sheet and have blank paper behind it to jot down questions we may ask you, particularly scenario based questions. Take your time to answer, ask for the question to be repeated, refer to your notes. It is very impressive for a panel/interviewer to see that you are prepared. We DON'T expect you to have quality answers memorized and we fully understand that your mind will go blank with all of us sitting there.

    Never, ever ramble. Answer the questions specifically but do NOT go on and on. If you are rambling, the panel is often rolling their eyes in their head. You come off as unclear on what you want to say and unsure of what a proper answer would be. We are looking for confidence, calm and cool confidence.

    If you bring a portfolio, make sure it includes info we are interested in. We already have your letters of reference so we wouldn't need to browse through a portfolio of that. We already have your resume, transcripts, etc. As a new, inexperienced teacher, use your portfolio to build a plan for your school year. Include that info. We will be interested in how prepared you are for the year and what strategies/techniques you plan to incorporate. Tab areas such as classroom management, parent communication, etc., and gather resources for those areas. Then, your portfolio will be useful to us but also to YOU when the year starts. If possible, use the portfolio to answer questions, refer to the correct section, etc. Leave the portfolio with the panel/interviewer when you leave and inform them you can pick it up later. Or....better yet, make a copy of the portfolio into a simple 3 prong pocket folder and leave that with them....keep the nice one for yourself. If you have a panel interview, call ahead and ask how many people will be on the panel, then make a pocket folder portfolio for each panel member. When you refer to a specific section to answer a question, they can refer at the same time and clearly see what you are talking about. They can also browse through it later.

    Okay, guys, in otherwords......you have to knock their socks off!!! You have to stand out, especially if many people are applying for one position. Have the confidence you need.....know that you deserve this job and that you will do a better job than any of the other applicants....if you believe it, they will believe it too. :)
     
  6. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jul 29, 2008

    TiffanyL-thank you for taking the time to responding with your experiences. I have done everything that you have stated, and STILL no offers and no interviews since June. :(
     
  7. MsWK

    MsWK Habitué

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    Jul 29, 2008

    What makes you give the candidate with no experience an interview?

    Their cover letter tells me why they want to work for my organization. Their resume clearly outlines their relevant preparation.

    What is your advice to candidates with no experience?
    Tailor, tailor, tailor! Tailor your cover letter so that I know why you want to work at my school. Highlight the preparation that is relevant. Don't make me go searching.

    what kind of application packets stand out amongst the others??
    The ones that are clearly addressed to me, that show knowledge of my organization and how the applicant can fit in it. The ones without spelling errors. The ones that don't make me dig to find out why this person applied.

    What exactly are you looking for when you look through applications or when you interview?
    I'm looking for all of the above, plus, I want to see that you meet our minimum requirements. If we ask for someone with a BA in ECE + 2 years experience, then I want to see that spelled out.

    Here's my advice as far as what gets resumes moved to the bottom of the pile:
    • A resume without contact information!
    • Misspelled words
    • Phrases that make me think your philosophy of education is outdated, i.e., "watched children play" or "disciplined kids who couldn't behave"
    • Job hopping or leaving a school before the end of the year
    • A general cover letter, one geared toward another position, or addressed to another person
    • A salary requirement that is way beyond what we pay
    • Too many years of experience in the same place without additional responsibilities (i.e., 10 years of being an assistant teacher)
    • I'm sure there's others, but that's off the top of my head
     
  8. TiffanyL

    TiffanyL Cohort

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    Jul 29, 2008

    QUOTE: TiffanyL-thank you for taking the time to responding with your experiences. I have done everything that you have stated, and STILL no offers and no interviews since June.


    Are you possibly in an area where teaching positions are hard to come by? If so, you may really struggle, as you describe. The reason for this would be that there may be other applicants who shine as bright as you, but who have experience. If that is the case, I am sure you are frustrated because how are you to ever gain experience, if you can't land a job.

    As difficult as it sounds, you may have to seek out jobs where teacher shortages are more prominent.
     
  9. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jul 29, 2008

    I'm not sure how the market is here. I didn't think it was that bad. I have 2 years experience teaching. We have a college about 30-45 minutes away from us so I'm sure that there is a lot of competition there.
     

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