Get involved. Stay involved.
Meaningless awards and affiliations
The badges you earned while you were a Boy Scout meant a great deal at the time. But they are not relevant in an employment application. On the other hand if you were a National Merit Scholar, that deserves a line. Put that right before the entry about your Fulbright Scholarship or Rhodes Scholarship. Ok, you get the point. Anything to do with academic achievement is something to be proud of. On a private school employment application academic achievement trumps just about everything else. At a minimum it should get you an interview. Remember: you will be teaching young people who want to learn. Your strong academic performance can and will inspire your students.
Everything in your job application should support the impression which you are trying to create in the reader's mind. "This is somebody we need to interview." You will be teaching young people. They will have enough off the wall influences of their own. The school would rather hire adults who can be exemplars and role models of steadiness and resolve. Their clientele, i.e., parents, expect that and much more. Mainstream hobbies and interests will not raise red flags. Include one or two on your application. Since you are being interviewed for a teaching...
Why You Need to Project Value Private schools have historically valued staff who are well-credentialed, enthusiastic and flexible. The reason why stems from the reality that private schools have just as many staff as they need. No more. What that means is that when there are gaps in the team , for whatever reason, the school needs somebody to fill that gap competently and cheerfully. On the fly.
Indications of Value
Credentials Start with your credentials. Make certain that your academic qualifications align with the school's stated requirements as well as offering an additional specialty or two. For example, if you have a Masters in French language and literature and are applying for the school's French teacher position, it won't hurt to be proficient in Spanish or Portugese or Italian as well.
If it has been several years since you completed your formal graduate studies, be sure to offer some recent courses, workshops and seminars which you have attended. It is important to show your prospective employer that you have not stopped learning. Make sure that there is no expiration on your "Sell By" date.
Experience Experience can be an advantage. But be aware that in these very competitive times your experience could also be a disadvantage. Years ago...