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Feedback

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by Clarys, Apr 13, 2011.

  1. Do you ask for feedback if you're unsuccessful?
    Just a pondering really, I've got into the habit of asking everytime it's clear I've not obtained an interview and to be honest I'm totally fed up. So far this year I've been told my philosophy education isn't clear - although my opening line details it VERY clearly! I've also been told I don't tell the school what I can do for them, erm, I examplify my good points/skills/experiences and explain how I'd use them in the classroom/school.
    The best feedback I've had so far started 'Your application was one of 75, does that say it all?' The person giving the feedback was lovely, but that's all they could hold up as feedback - my letter is strong, my experiences good, but in this case I'm just not experienced enough, where as all other feeedback I'have had the school has employed an NQT.
    I'm at a loss, just ranting here really. So far in the 6/8 weeks since Feb 1/2 term I've applied for 30+ jobs, in my specialism and second subject and guess how many interviews I've had - YEP! NONE! Even by my reckoning those are poor odds, but as Theo has pointed out in another thread there are 100s chasing 10s of jobs. I'm disheartened and don't know what to do, leave teaching? perservere? supply?
    I'm seriously considering rewriting my letter to be a simple 'Dear Headteacher. I am a good teacher, invite me to interview and see me practice my philosophy of education in your classroom. I allow my work to speak for itself which is why I can't articulate it in a letter. Oh and I know I'm MPS6 but that brings experience and skills an NQT just doesn't have. Yours sincerely, Clarys.' Would this approach work or will the HT ring me to laugh at me?
     
  2. Do you ask for feedback if you're unsuccessful?
    Just a pondering really, I've got into the habit of asking everytime it's clear I've not obtained an interview and to be honest I'm totally fed up. So far this year I've been told my philosophy education isn't clear - although my opening line details it VERY clearly! I've also been told I don't tell the school what I can do for them, erm, I examplify my good points/skills/experiences and explain how I'd use them in the classroom/school.
    The best feedback I've had so far started 'Your application was one of 75, does that say it all?' The person giving the feedback was lovely, but that's all they could hold up as feedback - my letter is strong, my experiences good, but in this case I'm just not experienced enough, where as all other feeedback I'have had the school has employed an NQT.
    I'm at a loss, just ranting here really. So far in the 6/8 weeks since Feb 1/2 term I've applied for 30+ jobs, in my specialism and second subject and guess how many interviews I've had - YEP! NONE! Even by my reckoning those are poor odds, but as Theo has pointed out in another thread there are 100s chasing 10s of jobs. I'm disheartened and don't know what to do, leave teaching? perservere? supply?
    I'm seriously considering rewriting my letter to be a simple 'Dear Headteacher. I am a good teacher, invite me to interview and see me practice my philosophy of education in your classroom. I allow my work to speak for itself which is why I can't articulate it in a letter. Oh and I know I'm MPS6 but that brings experience and skills an NQT just doesn't have. Yours sincerely, Clarys.' Would this approach work or will the HT ring me to laugh at me?
     
  3. I share your pain....
    I have yet to get shortlisted too. My head and deputy head have both helped me with my app letter and so I'm confident I'm on the right lines.
    It' so difficult to keep positive, but we must do. With every non response (surely a blanket email to all those not shortlisted would be far kinder than this neverending nothingness!) I just say... "their loss!"

     
  4. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I've been at this job application thing a bit longer than most and I generally no longer ask for feedback, it's not wort anything- just a 'politically correct reason' for why you didn't get picked which will not result in legal action.
     
  5. Really positive story from 'ballerina' above. If you do ask for feedback it's important to be realistic - if a school is reviewing 25 applications for one post, it's unlikely that they'll have lots of meaningful individual feedback on each one, so be prepared for some pretty generic stuff. And remember that what works for one school may not necessarily be the key to an application elsewhere, so you need to decide which bits of feedback to take action on. I would suggest that you should certainly always look for feedback after going through an interview - it's likely to be more insightful and useful than feedback on your a simple application form.
     
  6. As I am back on the application wagon for this year, I have recently sent 5 applications and 0 interviews from those applications even though I know they are good applications. I have sat down with friends (both teaching and those with HP or other jobs) before doing the next round (another 5 or 6) and honestly looked at what/where I can improve and changed how I apply. I don't bother asking for feedback on my application and try and stay philosophical about it that I just haven't found the right school for me and when I do it will click - not easy at all.
    I suspect schools have hidden agendas even if they don't say so. Cost is definitely one of them (but I should still be cheap one year in and have completed induction so it isn't that). I also suspect some schools want younger applicants (I am a mature entrant to teaching), but equally, I think there may be some schools where this will work to my advantage (have yet to find one LOL). I think heads have preferences as to how students are trained - one head last year only interviewed BEd applicants and they were all young NQTs, or perhaps this indicates the BEds had been given more sessions on applying for jobs than those on PGCE/GTP because they had more time available on their course, and perhaps more support available in uni for this? Men in primary will probably be at an advantage to women, especially if the school already has an all female staff. The school may be looking for something speific that is difficult to pinpoint, even going through the person spec or letter/job description.
    Another thing to add to this, last year I tried a brochure format (it got me an interview at two schools who loved it) but one head said it was an extremely creative way to use the two sides of A4, whilst another head gave me feedback that he thought it was pretentious. I was trying to show my creative side and bring across part of my personality, something very difficult to do on 2 sides of A4. This year I have used if the school has emphasised creativity but the more conservation schools have had the more traditional letter approach.
    I think the reality is that is it virtually impossible to make your application stand out from more than 100 others who will all be saying how they fit the person spec (I have started adding more detail on the desired aspects now to show I am different from other NQTs). If the school has hidden agendas you cannot possibly know what they are... then factor in internal applicants who are already doing the job (another potential hidden agenda).
     

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