Recently, I've started applying for teaching positions in various states. I've noticed that most of the school districts require that I have three references before they'll even consider my apiplication. One school district only excluded family members as references. So I typed up three different glowing references of myself from templates I found on the Internet. I made five copies of each and mailed them separately to three different former colleagues along with a self-addressed stamped envelope and directions: (Sign the five five copies and mail them back to me.) This was not a big problem, although I don't know why the references had to be originals. Some school districts make matters much harder. The references have to be former supervisors. And no creative writing allowed. These supervisors have to complete a specific form, sign, and mail it back directly to the school district. So I had to make three phone calls to track down one of my former supervisors, who I haven't seen or talked to for several years, and bother him about this stupid reference form. Now this former supervisor was (and still is) a swell guy, and of course he was very happy to help me out, etc. But Jeez, the guy's retired, and I felt like a heel callling him at his home like that. Once I got the three supervisors' references part of my application package taken care of, I was instructed to schedule an interview. Much to my chagrin, I noticed on the school district's interview scheduling web site there were dozens and dozens of other applicants scheduled for the next few weeks. Why can't these school districts require these references once an applicant is seriously being considered for the job? Has anyone else had this problem? I know I'm in a different situation than most. I retired from my first teaching career last year. I think many of my former supervisors wouldn't even remember me, if they're still alive!