After the past 5 months of helping my brother-in-law seek teaching jobs I have realized that not everyone seeks employment in education as hardcore as I did. I want to share with you how persistently I pursued my teaching position.
I graduated college in December of 2010 and knew that it would not be likely to find a teaching position at that time of year. I was put on the substitute teacher list for both school systems in my hometown. I printed business cards with my information (both my maiden name and married name for people who didn’t know that I had recently married). I placed one in each teacher’s mailbox at the six schools closest to my home. I also dropped resumes off for each of the principals in those six schools.
I then subbed as many days as possible. I never turned someone down unless I was already subbing for another teacher. Each time I was at a school I would:
- Drop a resume in the principal’s office
- Smile and talk with all adults I encounter in the building (especially lunchroom staff and janitors—they get ignored most of the time, but make a HUGE impact in the school)
- Leave a detailed report for the teacher I subbed for
- Talk with other teachers on the grade level during lunch and planning offering to help in any capacity
- Memorize student’s names to make them feel special the next time you are in that school
I also always had my portfolios with me in case an opportunity to speak with a principal came up. In my portfolio I had:
- letters of recommendation
For experienced teachers you may also want to include:
- pictures from your currently classroom
- letters from parents of students
I applied for every job within a 60 mile radius of my home and would call schools requesting speaking to with the principal after two days. Many times I was unable to speak with them, but that didn’t stop me.
After I knew several teachers in a school I requested permission from them to invite the principal to watch me teach when I subbed for them. They granted me permission and I emailed the principal. He did not come observe me, but he did stop by the classroom and reassure me that he knew who I was.
This is not the end all be all on how to get a teaching job, but it worked for me! If you are job hunting, my thoughts and prayers go out to you. If you already have a job, remember how blessed you are to have that job!