Why not me?

Discussion in 'Job Seekers' started by msmac21, Jul 24, 2014.

  1. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 24, 2014

    First off, thanks to anyone who actually reads this because this is a "I'm feeling sorry for myself" post.

    Any positive encouragement on here would be much appreciated. I'm starting to get in depression mode because as of now I STILL don't have a teaching job for next year. I have been tirelessly searching for two years in an area where every position gets thousands of applicants.

    It just hurts to think that other people are getting jobs and not me. I'm sitting here trying to think of what is so bad about me that I'm not getting hired. I've sent out about 100 applications since April. I've had 6 interviews. Only one of those was second round.

    I know so many of you on here have been in my shoes. I just don't know what to do at this point except keep trudging along. I do NOT want to go back to day-to-day subbing next year. I just can't do it :( Any advice, positive words, tell me to stop feeling sorry for myself? I am really down today.
     
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  3. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Hugs.

    Are you able to work? Can you apply for Para positions?
     
  4. mathteachertobe

    mathteachertobe Cohort

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    Jul 24, 2014

    I remember well how demoralizing job hunting can be. I'm sorry you haven't found something yet.

    My advice is to email ALL the principals at ALL the schools you are willing to work at, send them your resume and explain your interest in any positions they may find unfilled. In the last weeks before school starts, many Ps find themselves with unexpected openings. Many people (including me) have found a job this way.
     
  5. cafekarma

    cafekarma Rookie

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    Jul 24, 2014

    msmac21, here is what I have to offer in terms of encouraging words. I have sent out countless applications this year and have been on 4 interviews. I'm already feeling discouraged and fantasizing about throwing in the towel. When I read about people like you who have been searching for 2 years, I feel inspired. You haven't given up! You're still out there working hard to get a position, and I admire that. That determination shows what a great teacher you must be. I wish you all the best and look forward to reading your name on the Jobs List one day soon.
     
  6. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Are you willing to relocate?

    The fact that you're getting interviews means that you probably have a good cover letter and resume. It might be time to beef up your interviewing skills. Does your university have a career services office that can help with that? Or maybe your state has a job placement service that also has classes or one-on-one sessions for developing interviewing skills?
     
  7. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jul 24, 2014

    :hugs:, msmac!

    It's a tough market in the 'tri-state area'. Hold your head up..you're getting some interviews which is more than many job seekers can say in our part of the country.
    Take a look at the cover letter, resume and interviewing threads here on the forums. You might find some ideas that inspire you to tweak some of your paperwork or help with some interview questions.
    Then send out your polished up package to EVERY public, private and charter within a reasonable commute/relocation possibility. It doesn't matter if these districts/schools already have your application or if they don't ave openings posted...it's nearly August. Random openings do happen that just haven't been posted yet. It's worth it to see what opportunities may be out there!
    Good luck!
     
  8. joeboo22

    joeboo22 Rookie

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    Jul 24, 2014

    relocate relocate relocate? If your not tied to your area, the best option would be to relocate where you will get a job, whether that be indian reservations or inner cities. After 1 or 2 years you will be able to get a job almost anywhere. Its hard work but its worth it.
     
  9. sunshine24

    sunshine24 Comrade

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    Jul 24, 2014

    I know exactly how you feel. I got my BS and Childhood Ed cert in Dec 2010 and my MS and Spec Ed cert in May 2012. I knew it would be difficult, but I never dreamed that it would take me 4 years to land a full time job.

    I know how bad day-to-day subbing can be. The unsteady income and unsteady job schedule got me even more discouraged, so I really feel you. I just got hired 2 weeks ago and I still cant really believe that it finally happened. Like you, I had got it in my head that it would never happen for me. The whole process is just so discouraging.

    The only advice that I have is to keep sending out resumes. Email principals, walk copies into the schools, and snail mail a copy too. The only thing we, as job seekers, can really do is persevere and know that it will happen one day. I echo what the other posters have said about relocation. This was not an option for me, but I know others have moved cross country just to find work.

    Good Luck!!
     
  10. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Keep at it! Try the more aggressive approach of contacting principals without openings. We just had 2 openings come up at my school in the last couple days. For one of the jobs, there are no applicants at all. I just heard about the other opening today so it hasn't even been posted. I know my P would be happy to hear from someone out of the blue.
    Have you considered adding another certification? We are MS and it seems there are lots of K-4 people and HS people, but not so many for middle grades.
     
  11. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Thank you to everyone for their responses. As many said, I have emailed principals and send out resumes to a lot of districts. I have not received replies. Principals in this area seem to be pretty famous for that. I'm going to start branching out to districts further out and emailing them.

    As far as relocating... it isn't an option at the moment. Partly because we just moved and can't get out of our lease, but also because I don't want to leave my family. I have young siblings and I really don't want to miss their entire childhood. It's a tough call to make, believe me. I beat myself up over that choice every single day.

    Guess I just have to keep pushing!
     
  12. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 24, 2014

    I'm glad to hear that about my CL/resume Caesar. I was thinking the same thing. If they were terrible I wouldn't have gotten interviews.

    I hadn't thought about the interviews with career services part! That's a great tip! I've used them for CL/resume polishing, but not interviews! I will try that- thank you!
     
  13. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Mary, if you don't mind me asking, what area of PA are you in? Maybe I can apply to your school! Could you PM me?

    I just added special ed in December when I got my Masters. I'm K-6 elem. and Pre-K-8 special ed. I'm currently saving up to try and take my Praxis in a couple subjects but I'm pretty broke at the moment.

    I'd love to hear what district/area those openings are in! It's rare that I see posters from PA on here!
     
  14. DressageLady

    DressageLady Comrade

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    Jul 24, 2014

    msmac21,
    I know how you feel. I graduated in December 2012 (had to go back and finish the last 8 weeks of my student teaching in Jan. 2013 due to having emergency surgery half way through my last semester, but was graduated and employable in December, 2012).

    I subbed for the rest of that winter and spring, and applied to five districts. I had a ton of related experience and had glowing letter of recommendation from my cooperating school and university supervisor. I knew it was a tight job market, and I knew that I was going to have to work hard to get a job. But I never thought I would be shut out entirely.

    All last summer I watched my former classmates get hired. I knew the good, the bad and the ugly about each of them and was often very, very demoralized when someone who had been a very shaky teacher candidate would announce via Facebook that they had been hired. While I sat.

    I had four interviews last year. I thought they went very well, but obviously the offer went to someone else. One position that I very much wanted went to a good friend who was waiting to interview as I was leaving from mine. I was equally happy for her, because she is an amazing person, and depressed for me! It took every once of good will I could find to offer her congratulations. I knew she deserved it, but it was still difficult.

    I was also told to relocate. But I can't. I am older, teaching is a second career for me, and our lives are here: my husband's work, my son was just starting high school last year. We own our home. We can't move. I hated subbing with a deep and abiding passion. I hated never knowing from day to day if I would be working, or where I would be if I were lucky enough to get a call.

    So I applied for a classified position and was hired as a paraprofessional in a 56 combo class. I was an aide, and there were days when the idea of wasting my degree and credential on prepping materials for other teachers made me want to cry. But it was a job, and I was in a classroom. Plus, I could apply as an internal applicant for teaching positions within the district, which I was told by the HR office would give me an advantage.

    This hiring season started in March with planned openings (retirements) and I quickly discovered that the district had changed the application policy for classified employees: we could no longer apply as internal applicants. That was a huge blow. I felt like I had spent the entire last year for nothing.

    But in actuality, I had learned a lot. I revamped my resume. I revamped my cover letters. I spent a lot of time reflecting on my previous interviews and was embarrassed to think that I had considered them great!

    And I applied in all the same districts again. I kept a record this year. I had 84 applications out this year, as well as personally contacting two principals that had interviewed me last year. And got four interview requests from those applications. And I got hired!

    So don't give up. Do whatever you have to do. Apply for para jobs! There is no shame there! Just keep trying. Tighten your resume up. Reflect on your past interviews and work on making the next interview better than the last.

    I have been so sick with envy that I unfriended every last one of my Facebook friends who I had gone through the Education Program with. I didn't want to hear about their new jobs, or how much fun they were having. And I certainly didn't want to hear any of them complain! I gathered up my teacher supply catalogs and put them out of sight. I did whatever I had to do to A) acknowledge that I felt horribly disappointed and envious and, B) after a suitable time licking my wounds, I got back out there and started the whole thing all over again for a second year.

    You can totally do this! Don't give up!
    Sheilah
     
  15. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Jul 24, 2014

    I PMed you.
     
  16. ktmiller222

    ktmiller222 Cohort

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Apply for para or assistant positions.
    What areas are you certified in? Can you go get additional certifications so you are more marketable?

    I've been trying for four years to get a teaching job. It sucks.
    Good luck!
     
  17. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    Jul 24, 2014

    PA is definitely a tough market. Just keep at it as best as you can. Also, if you haven't already, make sure to not just check PA Reap but the individual web pages for all schools you're willing to drive to. Then be sure to check them daily and apply the day you see the posting. Some only have the posting up for a day or two. Increase your "acceptable" driving range if possible. I've been in two different schools during my 6 years of teaching and both times I've had coworkers who commute 1 1/2 hours. When I student taught I know my cooperating teacher drove 50 min. While a long commute is far from fun, if you can get a couple years under your belt in a school far from home, you can then hopefully get something closer to home.

    As far as adding on certs, these days it's harder to add on as the middle school Paraxis exams that you were able to add on to a K-6 cert have gone away. Though I got my first job via a FACS add on so I definitely know of the benefit of an add on.

    ESL is a good add on, but requires course work not just the Praxis exam. I got mine through an Intermediate Unit and it was all on-line. It's a bit different now as you need to do field hours, but this is the place I got mine from:
    http://www.iu1.org/services/esl-certification
    The cost is about $2,000 for all the courses I think, so cheaper than going to a traditional university to add on the cert, but a lot more than just a Praxis exam.
     
  18. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    Jul 24, 2014

    Slight edit as far as add on for middle years:
    What I meant is that the Praxis exams specifically for grades 7-9 are gone as far as I know, though I think you can still do an add on for middle school subjects by taking the grades 7-12 secondary Praxis exams.
     
  19. MissPapa

    MissPapa Comrade

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    Jul 25, 2014

    msmac21 - When did you graduate? I got my masters in May 2013 and have been looking until I got a job this summer. It was a very daunting experience. Hell, ONE school called me to "offer" me a job only to call back to tell me they made a mistake and that they were offering another person whose name is similar to mine the job. THAT gave me psychological problems (found out while I was in Six Flags, had a terrible breakdown in front of my fiancé). I had to do another year of subbing, which sucked. BUT I got 2 long-term assignments, one which led me to a job (not at that school, but the school that hired me was friends with the principal who knew the principal who was hiring me).

    I also had friends who graduated with me who got jobs. I felt like I was doing something wrong…

    Keep trying. Also try your hardest to get to know any principal you work for. These days, it's who you know. It's definitely hard because of ALL the schools I subbed at, only like 2 or 3 principals gave me the time of day on positive notes. And definitely see if you need to edit anything like your resume, portfolio, cover letter, you answers to typical questions, etc. And in interview questions, don't be afraid to give yourself a bit time to think about how you're going to answer that question. A clear answer is a lot better than rushing it out and stuttering :)

    Everyone's time comes when the timing's right.
     
  20. Teacher Gii

    Teacher Gii Companion

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    Jul 25, 2014

    This is a really beautiful quote, and I can relate to it personally. I'm actually a little emo now. :thumb:
     
  21. abat_jour

    abat_jour Companion

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    Jul 25, 2014

    I think you said you can't but try to find a way to get out of PA. Why would you want to work somewhere that is so ridiculous with hiring?
     
  22. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 27, 2014


    Sheilah everything you said in your post is me in a nutshell!!! I am totally copying you and unfriending people on Facebook because that gets me really down more than anything!! I appreciate the time you took to tell me your story because it reminds me I'm not alone! Sometimes it can feel that way when my boyfriend and family don't understand! Which is why I come on here : ) thanks Sheilah!!!!
     
  23. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 27, 2014

    I'm elementary K-6 and special ed Pre-K-8 (Masters degree). I just got the masters in special ed and I'm trying to save up to take the Praxis for other subjects but I'm really struggling with money this summer. Ah ktmiller, I feel your pain, I can't imagine waiting four years!!! PA STINKS! Good luck to you too!
     
  24. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    MsMar, thanks for the advice! I've been trying to get the money to take either English 7-12 or social studies 7-12. You sound like you're in the eastern part of the state by mentioning PAreap- I'm in the southwest and there isn't any jobs in this area on PAreap. Jealous because there's a TON of jobs out your way!!!
     
  25. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Thanks MissPapa! I like that quote too. I graduated in May 2011 but didn't get certified until May 2012. So I've been trying since 2012. I'm in the same boat with watching everyone get hired and not me. That's good advice about the interviews! I'm always confident in my answers but I bet I could do better if I slowed down a bit! Congrats on the job! : )
     
  26. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Jul 27, 2014

    PA is my home. Ridiculous or not, my family is here. I have younger siblings and I won't miss a year of their lives and tons of milestones to relocate. They are extremely important to me and my happiness. It's not in the cards for me to pick up and move for me as it may be for others.
     
  27. msmac21

    msmac21 Companion

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    Don't be emo Teacher Gii! Did you hear back from that job interview? It sounded awesome!!
     
  28. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    Jul 28, 2014

    Maybe they use PA Educator (I think that's what it's called) out your way. I do believe PA Reap is South Eastern PA for the most part. While you will definitely see postings in this neck of the woods, there are a TON of applicants for each elementary job. The positions in the more desirable districts for elementary get 1000 - 2000 applicants (6 years ago I applied for elementary in a district I had been a 6 month LTS in and found out that that had over 1000 applicants for 4 jobs, a newspaper article last year mentioned 2,200 applicants for 6 positions in a district near by). My district had a job posted for one day on our Human Resources page on the district web page and in 24 hours had 87 applicants. Needless to say they didn't post it on PA Reap to get more applicants.

    All of PA is just a very tight market. I have a friend who got her elementary cert 3 or 4 years ago and she's had a few 8 week long LTS positions but has yet to get a full time contract. The only reason I have my job teaching elementary is the three years I did as a FACS teacher (I switched from FACS to elementary within my district when the FACS department was reduced in size). The summer I got my FACS job I applied for both elementary and FACS positions. I had 6 or 7 interviews for FACS and not one for elementary. Sadly these days FACS is being cut though, so it's not as easy of an "in" as it was when I started. Three years ago I tried to leave my district and I had no luck getting a new job. I like it better now so will most likely stay put, but I think if I did want to leave for elementary chances are it wouldn't happen.

    Good luck adding on the 7-12 certs. I do think in PA they like people with more than one cert. With elementary, special ed and something else hopefully you'll be able to get something soon. Just know it's definitely not just you, there are oodles of people in PA feeling like you are. Again, good luck to you and just keep trying :).
     

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