The first years of practice can be a time of great hope and exhilaration -- and fatigue and anxiety. This group is designed to allow new teachers and veterans alike to connect and share that sense of community that is so important in the first years.

looking for work and filling out job applications

Celine Mazoyer French teacher

I have started filling out job applications, writing letters of application, resume, personal statement... and I am sure it is a busy time for all of us looking for a job.

I have used one web site that has helped me to build my documents : http://resumes-for-teachers.com/

But still it is hard for a new teacher to know what to put in those documents in order to make it a successful application.
How, as a newly qualified teacher, can I work on my applications so that my resume is not taken out from the list because of my lack of experience?

What are the challenges you face when looking for a job or filling out applications?

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Science Teacher from the Capital District Region, New York

Hi Teri,

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Hi Teri,

I'm interested to hear more about your experiences with cold-calling. Many of the school districts here (in NY) are on an online system (OLAS), and I've been told offices will now only pay attention to submitted applications via OLAS. I tried to do a phone-call follow up once to check on the status of a paper resume (per recommendation of colleague who gave me the job tip) and it was a nasty experience :( I'm afraid to attempt cold-calling after that!

Can definitely relate w/ the predicament of more teachers than jobs... I just had my substitute interview this week (as a backup plan) and I was told point blank within the first few seconds there were more subs than open positions! A bit disheartening...

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Hi Cheska,
I have a feeling that reception to cold calling may vary with the principal or district. I still think it is a valid concept. Sure, you may get a bad reaction here or there, but on the other hand, really wanting the position and letting the person in charge know that may make the difference. Besides, I feel so desperate, I'll take the chance. If you know people who have been hired, try to find out if they did anything special or why they think they were selected.

The key in cold calling, I think, is not to make a pest of yourself. Surely, one hand-shake visit per principal would not do much harm?

I can't say much for the cold calling technique because I'm still unemployed! However, I do know, in my heart of hearts, that I've done everything I could possibly do to make myself a viable candidate: cold-calling; on-line portfolio; demonstration classroom website; 38 page classroom management action plan (took the Harry Wong on-line course); classroom discipline plan; plan for substitutes; lesson plans keyed to our state's mandated "curriculum", the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills, very high scores on all of our state tests (TExES); ESL test made a perfect score!; Brain Gym 101 seminar (expensive!); several continuing ed. seminars at our local education service center; attended all the teacher job fairs.

I read recently that we are in the worst economic climate since the Great Depression. Here's why I think my classmates and I have not been hired (about 120 out of approximately 600 active available candidates in my alternative certification program were hired this summer.)

- teachers who would like to retire don't feel safe doing so; many have lost value in their money market IRAs
- teachers who would like to change careers can't find another job
- teachers who have been laid off (massive layoffs in my part of the world) compete against newbies like me and my classmates.

I do think there's hope for us but it will be a long wait.

Hi Lisa, I have years of

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Hi Lisa,
I have years of experience in teaching and my Masters in Curriculum & Instruction. I left my position 5 years ago where I had taught for 7 years to move to another area for my husband's job. In a nutshell, large area, many schools, I didn't see a problem getting a job. It not only took me 3 years to get hired but within the year that I started they started laying off people because of financial shortfalls in the districts,(and surrounding districts). So, last one hired, one of the first to be let go. I am applying again, but I am just not sure what is crucial to say in my application. Can you help?

Edu Consultant. Blogger & Social Media Marketing at Edutopia

Julie Burns

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Hi Julie, I'm sorry not to have gotten back to you sooner. Preparing to leave for San Francisco this week to present at ASCD, so very busy. I'm so sorry to hear about your journey. So many friends I know here in Cali are in the similar situations. As you are applying, be honest with framing your situation, but it's helpful to give a "professional" spin on what you were doing during the break in employment. Were you volunteering at school or in the community? Were you taking classes? Were you subbing? Were you volunteering at a local/school library? On the PTA? Give it as much positive professional focus as you can. Don't say "I was just job-searching". Do you blog? You should and be sure to highlight that work!
I also highly recommend that you apply to positions outside the public school district. Not sure if you've used it, but "Indeed" is a great way to get a compilation of jobs based on your interest. There are some great positions out there,depending on the state you live in, so check them out.
Keep me posted on your progress!
~Lisa

Edu Consultant. Blogger & Social Media Marketing at Edutopia

Julie Burns

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Hey Julie...One more thing. Be sure that you have created a web presence for yourself that future employers can use to find you. Join LinkedIN, create a Google Profile and a Visual CV here the link http://www.visualcv.com
All the best!
~Lisa

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