Find Job Listings
The advantage jobseekers in the 21st century have over previous generations is without doubt the Web. The Internet allows you to learn about job openings immediately they are posted online. This also applies to teachers and administrators looking for employment in private schools. Most schools will at the very least have an Employment link on their sites. There may not be much on it at certain times of the year when there are no vacancies. But at least it's a link to which you can return from time to time to see what openings a school has. Job boards and agencies provide online listings as well. Bear in mind that there are peak times to the private school job search process. Typically November through February is the
time when your colleagues are out there looking as well. Schools generally like to have contracts for the next academic year signed and sealed by the beginning of March. As a result you will probably find the most online listings beginning in the fall. Are there exceptions? Of course, but they are just that: exceptions. Schools will always have unexpected openings. Teachers and administrators will occasionally find themselves in the midst of unexpected and unplanned for life events and changes. However, as a rule, try to plan your jobsearch for private school employment well in advance. That gives you the advantage of being able to turn down a job offer which doesn't quite match your requirements, instead of having to take whatever you get.
One way to use the Web in your job search is to gather information. Yes, you want to know about the job opening. But you also want to know whether the job is what you are really looking for. Explore the school's website from top to bottom. Read all the mission statements. See what courses they offer. Do they jibe with what you want to teach? Where did the past several years' graduates matriculate? Or did they? What is the financial situation? Did the school squander its endowment on bad investments? Is it fiscally conservative and well-managed? Does the school show up in Google searches with bad press about lawsuits or stories about students being expelled for scandalous reasons? You need to do your due diligence carefully. The Web allows you to do that with relative ease.
When you find a job listing, email your friends and colleagues. Ask them questions about the school, its curriculum, the teaching conditions and all the other things which matter to you. After all, you are probably thinking about leaving your present position for reasons having to do with what you have to teach any way. So, focus on the important issues first. The Web can make that part of your due diligence and fact checking fairly easy. The only caveat is that you need to keep your data and information organized. Tip: A spreadsheet is one way to organize information.
More and more schools are accepting applications online. It just makes good sense from a backend point of view. All those applications can be stored and retrieved efficiently if they are in electronic format. They can be forwarded and copied with ease as well. Those of us who had to handle job applications the old fashioned way can only marvel at the efficiency and ease with which computers dispatch this formerly most tiresome chore.
Applying online, however, does not give you license to be sloppy or to make mistakes. If anything you need to exercise even more care and caution with any materials which are submitted electronically. That's because they are virtually permanent (pun intended) and will remain on the school's servers for many years. Applying online does not give you permission 2 use
txt lang. Leave that to your cellphone and your friends. This is a formal job application even if it is online.
Interviews might be conducted by Skype if you live at a distance from the school. Generally a school will use a video phone interview to determine if it is mutually worthwhile to arrange a face-to-face interview. If you find yourself in that situation, try to schedule the interview at a time when you can be at home in front of your own computer. Having the school's website open and available will be very helpful to you. It will allow you to remember points you wish to discuss as well as allowing you to sound reasonably knowledgeable about the school.
Tip: make sure that anybody else in your home understands that absolute peace and quiet is essential while you are doing the interview. There can be no background noise at all as microphones always seem to pick up any sound. That includes pets.
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