Jobs in Private Schools
In this fictional conversation, a job seeker and I chat about looking for employment in a private school.
Q. Do I need to have a teaching certificate to teach in a private school?
A. Not necessarily. It depends on the school. Some schools will employ you without a teaching certificate with the requirement that you obtain one within a stated time frame, typically a year.
Q. Do I need an education degree to teach in a private school?
A. Most private schools value degrees in a subject. For example, if you are presenting yourself as an English teacher, they will look for a bachelor's degree with a major in American or English Language and Literature. The teaching skills and methodology which you could learn if you did an education degree will be useful; however, most private schools will require
The questions which you will encounter in your job interview for a private school teaching job depend on the experience and skill of your interviewer. Most of the time the interviewer will be well-trained and experienced. She will ask questions which are legal. However, you should be aware that even the most experienced interviews can and do slip up occasionally and ask questions which are illegal according to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The Civil Rights Act of l964 “prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex and national origin.” Put another way, you have rights and it is very important that you know and understand them.
Read Daniel Bortz' article on Monster.com, Illegal interview questions that employers shouldn't ask you. That will give you an overview of how things work in the corporate world as well as in small business like private schools. The problem with small organizations is that they don't always have the human resources professionals on staff to remind them of legalities such as what you can and cannot ask at a job interview.
Here are some of the things which are considered illegal for the interviewer to ask about. Incidentally, both federal and state laws consider questions about these issues illegal.
- Race, Color, or National Origin
- Sex, Gender Identity, or Sexual Orientation
- Pregnancy status
- Age or Genetic Information
- Marital Status or Number of Children
So, what do you do when an interviewer asks about any of these things? Don't answer. Depending on the situation, you could
Here is a guide for teachers and administrators seeking employment in private schools. Think of it as a roadmap for the job search process. I wrote this for teachers, as well as admissions and business office professionals and those seeking positions as dean of students and head of school. I have drawn most of the advice from my own experience in the field. Some of it is plain, old-fashioned common sense. I have also included some tips and strategies for dealing with today's job markets. You will find plenty of practical advice about applying, networking, using job boards and much more. I know that your goal is to get that all important first interview. So, with that in mind, let's get started.
You must follow each individual school's specific application instructions to the letter. If you don't follow their instructions, the staff member charged with screening applications will probably not file your application in the "To Be Interviewed" folder. Your application will end up in a folder with all the other applications which don't appear to meet their requirements at first glance. Back in the days before email and Monster.com, I had to open the mail from teachers looking for employment with the Anglican Education Association in The Bahamas. I could tell at a glance whether we would interview the applicant. Cover letters hand-written on a page torn from an exercise book never made the cut.
This video offers tips for completing emplyment applications.
Is your skill-set still on Release 1.0? This is a tough question for many of us teachers to deal with. Why? Because many of us are convinced that we don't need to update our skill-set now that we have found our dream teaching position in a wonderful school. We are set, right? Not exactly. As we all know things can change in a flash. Against this backdrop, you and I will explore your skill-set and offer some suggestions as to how to do some necessary upgrades.
Why do you need to upgrade your skill-set?
As I pointed out in the opening paragraph, your circumstances can change in a flash. The most common reason for suddenly needing a new teaching position is a major change in your family circumstances. A member of your family who lives in another state has an accident or becomes seriously ill requiring your presence in the area. While you could take Family Medical Leave, it has become obvious to you that the best solution is for you to move closer to your family member so that you can supervise his care and generally be there for him. That means you will need to look for a new teaching job.
In the following TEDx Talk, Jean-Michel Gauthier explains why your job applications are getting ignored.
The important thing to understand is that life can deal some unexpected cards. You thought you were set. Suddenly you are not. That is the reason