So many references...

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by Nikkia, Dec 21, 2020.

  1. Nikkia

    Nikkia New Member

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    Dec 21, 2020

    How many people do I need to contact about being a reference? Technically, applications will ask for 3-5, but they also ask for the contact info of all prior bosses, all cooperating teachers, and all former supervisors. That really adds up! And I need to contact all of these people and ask them to be willing to receive a phone call about me? As someone who is both shy and introverted, I really hate everything about the job searching process, but reaching out to several people I don’t see anymore to ask them for favors is the part I hate the most. I doubt all of them are going to be contacted, so it feels unnecessary in addition to being overwhelming. Do you have any insight or advice for this most dreaded activity?
     
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  3. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    I've never seen applications ask for that many references. 3 at most which also included past bosses but did not specify that they HAD to be past bosses. Do you mean typically they will ask for that many? Maybe it varies by region but that has not been the case where I have applied. I am also fairy certain they wouldn't care to speak with my cooperating teacher since I don't even know if he's still alive. That just seems excessive unless you JUST graduated.
     
  4. viola_x_wittrockiana

    viola_x_wittrockiana Comrade

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    Dec 21, 2020

    It's unlikely they'll call all of your references. You can stretch your list by using multiple people from the same job. I use my boss from the CC I was at and the person who did my employee evaluations because they weren't the same person.

    You probably don't need to call certain people to ask if they'll do it because it's understood as part of their role that those kinds of calls will happen. Your student-teaching university supervisor, for example, knows to expect calls. The same goes for people like store managers if you worked retail. You do need to contact anyone you worked with/for in a less formal setting, like tutoring or babysitting, or any co-workers you might be listing.

    You might also want to check policies for prior employers. Two of mine have the HR policy of not commenting on job performance. They'll only confirm that people worked there and say if you're eligible for re-hire or not. My last admins were forbidden from writing letters of rec. by district HR.
     
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  5. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Personally, I never bothered reaching out to those "old" contacts. I put down their information, but I assumed in practicality they'd never be contacted, and I never heard of anyone who was. In my area schools will absolutely contact your current/most recent P. I once worked for a nutcase and I tried every way imaginable to get around this, and there just wasn't one. Everywhere said it was district policy that they talk to this person. Otherwise, some called the other people I listed as actual references and some didn't.

    Applications in my area require you to put down your supervisor for every job and ask, "Can this person be contacted?" If you have more recent references, it's very unlikely they'll actually bother with it. I also filled out many applications that wanted you to put every job you've had within the past 10 years, including non-teaching jobs. The last time I was seriously job hunting I had 3 years of experience, so that included every HS and college job I had. No way were they going to bother contacting my old lifeguarding boss, but I put her info down to satisfy the application requirements. And yes, I also had ones that wanted my CT and university supervisor for ST.

    I would personally only ask permission for the people who you list as your actual references. And I'm not sure what your current employment situation is, but consider how you'll handle the situation with your current boss if you have one. My experience is that's the one person everyone will want to talk to.
     
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  6. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Our applications ask for three: a supervisor, a co-worker, and a personal.
     
  7. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    This may sound insane, but have backups. I was tentatively offered a job over the summer, and the hiring principal was losing his MIND finding three people to answer the phone. It even got to the point he called my off-season boss... also my MIL.

    :toofunny:
     
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  8. Nikkia

    Nikkia New Member

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    Dec 23, 2020

    A lot of schools I've been looking at use Applitrack, which asks for all of this information. However, I just realized that I now have over three years of teaching experience, so I am no longer asked to provide student teaching contact info, which does cut my list in half. I still hate it, but five is a lot less daunting than ten. Thank you for bringing that to my attention!
     
  9. Nikkia

    Nikkia New Member

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    Yeah, I'd really rather my current boss not know that I'm looking for another job, so I'm hoping potential employers would be willing to wait to talk with her until they're seriously considering hiring me.
     
  10. CaliforniaRPCV

    CaliforniaRPCV Comrade

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    Dec 24, 2020

    I see I am not alone in this. Are these schools? There is something wrong with employers that have this policy that, at the same time, ask applicants for references.
     
  11. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    When I was applying and it asked "can we contact this person?" when you listed your principal, I put, "Yes, as a final step prior to making an offer." Most principals I interviewed with were very understanding and totally willing to wait until I was the "top candidate" to make the reference call. Because my P at the time was a nutcase, I didn't want her contacted at all, but there was unfortunately no way around that. But plenty of people were willing to work with me on the timing.
     
  12. viola_x_wittrockiana

    viola_x_wittrockiana Comrade

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    One is the school that covid-RIF'd me. We were told at a staff meeting in maybe November? that there'd been an edict issued from HQ that HR wouldn't comment and the admins were not allowed to give us letters of rec. Admins kind of rolled their eyes and were sorry about the situation. We teachers were/are allowed to be references for each other, but we have to make it explicitly clear that we're speaking as co-workers on the same level, even if we're not.

    The other is ed. sector, but not a school. I can see why they do that, kind of, since there's so much turnover from project to project that would be hard to find somebody who actually worked with someone specific. They hire a 300-600 seasonal people every year with I think about 30 permanent employees.

    I rather agree that it's hypocritical for a business/school to ask for what they're not willing to give. I hope that doesn't work against me when I go back to hunting for a classroom job in a few months, especially since I only have one other local reference.
     

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