I have seen lots of teachers say how depressed and disheartened they have become when applying for jobs, so I decided to jot these notes down in the hope they will help someone.
These do not guarantee you the job or an interview but I think they help in the shortlisting process. I am by no means an expert but they may help an NQT
Of course some of your letter will be copy and paste but always make it specific for the post you are referring to.
- Get the school name correct and spelt right and refer to it when you can.
- Address the letter to Head and make sure you spell their name right.
- Read the Ofsted report – which bit is most relevant to the post you are applying for? Quote it and use it
- What is your educational philosophy? You need to know this and explain how it links with the role.
- Read the job description and person specification. Before you even start your letter I suggest you google this and theogriff to how to lay this out. There are plenty of advice on the old TES forums. Getting these skills down helps focus your letter
- Make sure you cover what the school wants from the job and person specification in the letter. Yes, lots will be similar from school to school, but notice the language that is used and replicate this in the letter. How are you skills and experience suited to the role you are applying for?
- Is it clear in your letter why you want to work in that school? Think students, culture and community – all headteachers and governors are proud of their schools. Make sure you have referred the school vision, ethos and values.
- What makes you special? What is going to make you stand out from the next candidate? This does not mean 3 paragraphs about how you helped a little old lady in Tesco’s when you were 17, but a focus on those skills and how they tie into the job you are applying for.
- It is OK saying you are a great at this and that but remember to back it up with evidence and the impact it has on students as well as colleagues and you.
- Get a friend, trusted colleague, person in that role to read through and double check for errors. I am terrible at spotting my errors, you have more counted 5 in this short blog. Proof reading is important.
The wait – the wait is horrid and the fact not many schools contact you to say ‘”sorry, thanks but its a no” may seem a little unfair. Lets be honest an application and supporting statement could take 5 to 10 hours. That is a long time?
Resilience is an import skill for a teacher to have, all of us will be unsuccessful at some point -but we pick ourselves up again. We at least want to transfer this to our students.
I wish you the very best of luck in your next application – and the hardest part is the interview.
These might help as well:
Let me know if you found this advice usefulFollow @TJohns85