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A polite suggestion to HT's and Governors who feel lesson observations are crucial when recruit an excellent teacher.

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by anon1008, Jun 1, 2012.

  1. Do you really feel it is fair to observe a brilliant teacher during a lesson then compare brilliant supply teachers and brilliant students against existing class teachers who teach daily during their current/recent employment? Do you really feel that the best candidates have applied for your wonderful teaching positions? I have had nine part-time interviews, to-date, all of which did not have a teaching observation. Of course after wowing them with my brilliant Application forms and excellent Supporting letters, I am observed in everything that I do from the moment I step into their wonderful schools, during my walk around the school, when meeting all the wonderful adults and children, and in the actual friendly interview room too. I have had many very comfortable, professional interview experiences, but have always been beaten by the better teacher with more RECENT classroom experience. (No sour grapes, my turn will come soon!)

    However, I feel I must inform you that even in these dog-eat-dog times many teachers especially supply teachers don?t even consider applying for positions with a teaching observation test, as they feel like they are being stared at like meat ready for the slaughter. It is very daunting for them especially after completing 16 months supply teaching then having to abide by the current ?16 month supply teaching rule?. I for one have a BA Hon?s, QTS, SEN Specialism and have completed ?the rule? but unfortunately I haven?t had any classroom experience for eight months, which is normal in today?s primary school NQT recruitment system, although I have worked for a further eleven months as a one-to-one tutor by teaching literacy and numeracy to primary children ( Wow ! I?m Brill in these areas, as you can imagine). I also have prior experience of working as a TA then a HLTA and have a ?3 yr Foundation degree in teaching and learning support? therefore plenty of school life experience and obviously a genuine love for children too.

    Despite all of this I could not and would not ever stand in front of a judge and jury, who feel that it is the right way to treat individual, quivering wrecks.I am an individual too who genuinely feels that you gain respect to get the best out of children and adults. Also you should treat every one as an individual and as you would like to be treated yourself, and I have VAK preferences too? albeit mine are in the application process and when meeting you all in the interview rooms too.

    >p> So please be considerate the next time you advertise for an experienced professional teacher. Thank you for your time
  2. GloriaSunshine

    GloriaSunshine New commenter

    In interviews, I hate the observed lesson. Come to think of it, now employed, I don't like being observed and judged for performance management. There are poor teachers that can teach a brilliant lesson. There are many teachers who would be reliable, conscientious and able to teach good (or better) lessons every day but who cannot do so in an interview situation. But, it's common practice to ask candidates to teach a lesson. If you won't attend interviews with a sample lesson, you're reducing your chances of employment considerably. Most observers understand that some people get very nervous and will bear that in mind if they see a well planned lesson and someone interacting with the students.
  3. It is the norm, and rightly so, that teachers are observed teaching when applying for jobs. You said that you won't apply for jobs if you have to teach to get them, and many other are with you... There is a recession on. Primary is particularly competative. It is very rare to find lesson obs not part of the interview procedure. Yes it's nervewreaking but that's part of the procedure. You'll be incredibly lucky to get a job if you refuse to attend any that follow normal procedures.

    From people at my school who are looking for new jobs, it seems now to be the norm that you will not only be observed, but if that lesson wouldn't be graded OFSTED good or outstanding they won't even interview you.

    Being asked to teach to get a job as a teacher is normal. Refusing jobs that expect that will not get you far.
  4. Every day I have had of supply I treated like an interview. Consequently when attending interviews, I have always had comments about how confident I come across in the classroom situation. To me being observed is part of my career as a supply teacher, you never know who is going to feedback what to the rest of the staff and head.

    I think you are deluded if you expect to get a job without having an observation, even more so if you really believe that most schools don't observe as part of their recruitment process.
  5. Captain Obvious

    Captain Obvious New commenter

    An interview lesson I don't mind too much. It's being interviewed by students that I dislike - It's up to the qualified staff to decide whether the face fits, not a selection of the more articulate kids.
  6. I would find any teacher who objects to being seen teach quite strange and concerning. I certainly wouldn't employ them!
  7. I agree! Observations are a standard part of teaching, not just used in job interviews... if someone isn't up to being observed in an interview, who's to say how they would cope in subsequent observations if they got the job? And I also disagree with your comment about "I could not and would not ever stand in front of a
    judge and jury, who feel that it is the right way to treat individual,
    quivering wrecks" don't assume that everyone is nervous in these situations - I have never been a 'quivering wreck' in an observed interview lesson!
  8. Agree with the poster above. I have been to several interviews as I have a few temporary posts before securing my permanent post. Please don't assume your situation is 'normal.
    I qualified two years ago and took a maternity post. I then moved at Christmas to another school until the summer. I was offered a permanent post there but turned it down - this has turned out to be exactly the right decision! I moved last September to another temporary contracts and was asked by the head to move year groups at Christmas, as the Year 6 teacher left for promotion. I have now applied for a permanent post at the same school and got the post.
    I have withdrawn from two posts I have been interviewed for, but although nervous, I do quite enjoy the interview process. Perhaps that shows as I gained the first job I went for as an NQT. Then gained the second. For last September I went for 4 interviews (withdrew from 2) and gained the 4th one I went for.
    So no not assume that every NQT is doing supply. Most of the people I did GTP with started on temporary contracts and nearly all have permanent contracts now. I seriously think you are limiting yourself if you are refusing to teach for a teaching post.
  9. RamC

    RamC New commenter

    Being observed teaching is part of the job. You're observed every half term (or more) during your NQT year and then twice yearly for performance management purposes, plus "learning walks" or other observations needed. Being observed means you get feedback on how you are progressing as a teacher, sometimes good, sometimes bad, sometimes fair, sometimes not so much. After I finished my PGCE I was applying for special school positions, and the job came up I wanted. I was absolutely petrified to be teaching a class of PMLD students with 5 TA's, but the observation went well because I was able to highlight my strengths but also make it clear I knew where I needed to progress during my NQT year. And I got the job, first interview. How are schools supposed to differentiate between an excellent writer and an excellent teacher unless they see you teach? It's like saying "well, I am a proficient cook but I won't let you taste any of the food, trust me though I'm great." Bring me the cake or I don't believe you!

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