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Dear Theo: Not Visiting the School?

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by Lilybett, Jun 19, 2011.

  1. Hi Theo (and anyone else!),
    So I've got a couple of job apps to get done today and am just wondering about the whole "visits"-thing. In the last few weeks, I have not been visiting schools cos I've been working on supply. In job apps I've submitted, I apologised in the covering letter for not having visited, citing the ad hoc and often last-minute nature of supply work but said I'd researched the school and knew its strengths were _____ and it was working to improve _____ and so I would be a good addtion because ______. I thought this would be okay - I know of people who got jobs at schools they never visited - but suddenly I haven't been getting interviews. Previously, my apps have almost always got me shortlisted, it's just at the interview stage I stuff it up!! [​IMG]
    All I can think is that I haven't been visiting the schools. Am I saying the wrong thing about it in my cover letter? I felt like it would be worse to just not mention it... The only other thing I can think, is that in the last few weeks, I've had to check the box saying I'm unavailable for interview 22-24 June (WIMBLEDON!!!). Or, of course, they can see I'm a dreadful *** and don't want to shortlist me. But I'm just not very clear on why this cretinousness has only come through in the last few apps. Please help me word the next ones better, so they forgive me for not visiting the school!
    Many thanks xx
     
  2. Hi Theo (and anyone else!),
    So I've got a couple of job apps to get done today and am just wondering about the whole "visits"-thing. In the last few weeks, I have not been visiting schools cos I've been working on supply. In job apps I've submitted, I apologised in the covering letter for not having visited, citing the ad hoc and often last-minute nature of supply work but said I'd researched the school and knew its strengths were _____ and it was working to improve _____ and so I would be a good addtion because ______. I thought this would be okay - I know of people who got jobs at schools they never visited - but suddenly I haven't been getting interviews. Previously, my apps have almost always got me shortlisted, it's just at the interview stage I stuff it up!! [​IMG]
    All I can think is that I haven't been visiting the schools. Am I saying the wrong thing about it in my cover letter? I felt like it would be worse to just not mention it... The only other thing I can think, is that in the last few weeks, I've had to check the box saying I'm unavailable for interview 22-24 June (WIMBLEDON!!!). Or, of course, they can see I'm a dreadful *** and don't want to shortlist me. But I'm just not very clear on why this cretinousness has only come through in the last few apps. Please help me word the next ones better, so they forgive me for not visiting the school!
    Many thanks xx
     
  3. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Are you seriously more keen to go to Wimbledon (I assume you aren't playing) than to secure a teaching position? If so, then this would probably explain the lack of interviews. I'd not mention the unavailable part and then once they invite you, decide then which is more important to you. It is entirely possible the interviews are not on those days, so not point making yourself look bad for nothing.

    Not visiting isn't a problem for the reasons you give, and writing the explanation is fine (Well it is what I have done in the past and has worked for me.) though I've always put it in the last paragraph, but I doubt that matters much.
     
  4. Haha. Nope, of course I want a job more. Well. I've been jobhunting and jobhunting and jobhunting for a year now. I was offered the tickets in March and decided that if I got a job, I would return the tickets and not try to wangle the days off in term-time! No job - I'm going. There's NO WAY I'm missing Wimbledon only to find that I'm still a miserable, poor supply teacher come September, anyway! It's only this batch of two or three applications for which I checked the 'Are there any days you will be unavailable for interview?'-box. And I didn't say I was off to watch the tennis. So anyway, the apps I'm doing today, the interviews will be after Wimbledon. Do you think I had no luck because I said there were 3 days I was unavailable? That's interesting and reassuring. Merci, Minnie x
     
  5. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    I agree with Minnie - go for the interview and not the tennis!
    Don't click unavailable - if they are undecided whether to shortlist you or someone else, and you are unavailable on the day they are interviewing, they will select the other person. Don't be fooled into thinking that they will decide their interview days to suit you, because they won't.
    A good explanation for not visiting seems fine to me, especially if you actually ring the school and ask a few questions, and mention this in your letter.
    Below is some general advice about getting to interviews - hope it helps you.
    Point 1 Are you getting notification of all possible
    jobs? Do several JobAlerts here on the TES Forum, for all your
    subjects, and then repeat them all for the independent schools.
    Point 2 Are you following the advice in the shortlisting clickables inside the Welcome thread?
    Lots
    of posters have found it gets them interviews - and jobs. Headteachers
    say that they appreciate candidates who do what I advise.
    Please take Theo's advice!
    taking Theo's Advice
    The benefit of an executive summary
    read theo's advice and do the executive summary people, it really does work, seriously!!!!
    Dear Theo: Executive summary works- I have an interview
    Point 3 Are
    you making the most of all the advantages that come from doing supply?
    Some applicants tend to be apologetic about supply; you should present
    it as a positive.
    Dear Theo- work history too bitty and too much supply- help!
    Point 4 Have
    you tried doing an interview practice with someone who will give you
    blunt feedback? You might, for example, being doing something quite
    simple, like screwing up your face in a glare when you are conisdering
    an answer, which can be very off-putting. And which a school is
    unlikely to tell you about.
    Point 5 And finally,
    if all has failed because you are already doing all this, then you
    should be thinking of getting on a train to come to the seminars on
    Sunday 26 June.
    www.tesweekendworkshop29.eventbrite.com
    Going to a seminar has worked for many posters
    Dear Theo.....I got the job!!!!!
    Good Luck!

    _____________________________________________________________
    TheoGriff. Member of the TES Careers Advice Service.
    I
    do Application and Interview one-to-ones, and often contribute to the
    Job Application Seminar Workshops. We look at application letters,
    executive summaries and interviews, with practical exercises that people
    really appreciate.
    See the full programme www.tes.co.uk/careerseminars

    E-mail Julia on advice@tsleducation.com for how to book a meeting with me personally.Look forward to seeing you!

     

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