So resignation date has passed. You’ve handed in your notice. And now you have until the new school year in September to land your dream teaching job in the UK. How do you do it?
Finding a new job is daunting. It is likely that you have been in your current role or at the same school for a while now, and a change can feel both welcome and overwhelming. With around 1600 teaching jobs in England at any one time, there are lots of jobs out there - and lots of teachers looking for them.
So how do you make sure you get the right role for you? It’s about more than simply searching ‘teaching jobs near me.’ You need to think smart with our advice.
Choosing the role
Really think about where you want to go in your career. General advice is that you should think about the role you want after this one, and make sure that the job offers you the opportunity to develop the skills and experience you will need to further your career in the long term. Consider the career progression available within that school. Are you likely to be able to get a promotion, and advance through the ranks, or will you need to move school again? Some people like changing school, whereas others prefer to get to know a place. It’s always good to keep aware of what might be needed for a future role, so you can figure out how to get it at your current role.
Think about the culture
It is not just about the subject you teach. Think about the type of school it is that you are applying for. You can be passionate about your subject, but if the school isn’t the right fit, it won’t be fun to teach. Think about class sizes and school sizes. Are they known for being creative, or more academic? What about religion? Languages? All these things will have an impact on what your day to day life is like. Teaching jobs in London are more likely to feature an ethnically diverse population where multiple languages are spoken.
Do your research. Read the Ofsted reports to get impartial advice. The Department for Education makes comparisons with schools of a similar profile and can tell you about things like absence rates, trends in performance, demographic etc. See if the Parent Teacher Association has a website and what they say. Search the new name of the school in the news function on Google and see what is being written about it. Join local Facebook groups and see if people are commenting on it. These can be routes to useful information that will help you build a picture of the school and its environment.
Getting them to choose you
Read the job description
It sounds obvious, yet it can be where people fall down. You need to make sure that you have specifically addressed everything that they are asking for in the teaching job description with clear and real world experience from your teaching career to date. It’s just about making it easy for them to choose you. Most will operate an assessment scorecard, so make it simple for them to tick against their criteria.
Often applicants will tell a hiring teacher or panel what they have done. Which is relevant. But what is more relevant is the impact that action has had on students, grades, and the school. It is essential to really showcase the end outcome of a particular intervention, or way of teaching, and how that has changed the student experience and end results. It was worth having a document where you keep a record of your wins, so you have them for easy access when filling out application forms for teaching jobs.
Professional development doesn’t stand still. It’s important to keep learning. Make sure that before your interview you read up on important debates and issues in your subject area, to show that you’re genuinely interested in and keep up to date with developments. You need to show that you can instil passion in students, and that comes from showing enthusiasm yourself.
With this advice, you will not only find a great teaching job, but absolutely nail the application and the interview.
Do you have any great advice? We would love to know!