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Finding out if an International School would accept an application first?!

Discussion in 'Teaching abroad' started by 4SC, Mar 2, 2018.

  1. 4SC

    4SC New commenter

    I'm looking to teach overseas, for the next part of my career. I have taught for nearly 11 years in the Primary Sector, I have been a Maths Co-ordinator, phase lead, mentor, coach and currently sit on the SLT. However, I do not have strict IB PYP experience.

    So, looking at many job adverts I can fulfil many of the essential criteria, apart from IB experience, which many school ads seem to say is highly desirable. In light of this, just today I wrote a couple of emails explaining my interest alongside some key points, like why I want to go to an international school, asking a few questions about their school and attaching my CV. I don't want to have to write a large covering letter and a targeted philosophy of education statement, fine tuning it to their ideologies, for them to put me on the reject pile because of no IB PYP experience.

    So, I asked them to have a look to see if they would like to receive an application; which I would then follow up in the next few days.

    Does anyone think it is fine to do that? or was it wrong to do that - I was just trying to be proactive and perhaps start a dialogue..

    Any thoughts would be most welcomed...
  2. blue451

    blue451 Lead commenter

    It's difficult to know how school managers think and in any case they don't all think the same.

    I understand your not wanting to invest the time in an application which won't be considered and to be honest I think you have nothing to lose in your approach. If a school is open to your application, they will likely respond to you.Those who don't bother are probably the same ones who woudn't have considered your application in any case.

    However, in the past, if I've made contact with a school before the formal application, I haven't included a CV. There's a risk I think that they might take that as your application and you won't get a chance to sell yourself with your statement/letter. I sometimes make a comment to the effect that I'm updating my CV or preparing my application and in the meantime would be grateful if they could........ whatever it is.

    Good luck.
  3. schmedz

    schmedz Occasional commenter

    'Highly desirable' doesn't mean 'essential' (and even without one or two 'essential' criteria, some excellent candidates can still be successful if they have an outstanding set of skills that fit the criteria in every other way)

    You have nothing to lose by asking, but you might be better to submit some applications to schools at which you REALLY want to work and tailor your statement/cover letter to show just how strongly you could fulfil most of the criteria and how enthusiastic you are to contribute to their particular school. Schools sometimes aren't great at responding to individual emails, and you may miss your window of opportunity to apply.

    The application process can be onerous and time-consuming, but a necessary evil. It will be worth it when you land your dream job!

    Good luck!
  4. the hippo

    the hippo Lead commenter Community helper

    Different schools have slightly different processes for advertising vacancies. Yes, I would agree with schmedz that individual e-mails tend to fall down the cracks and so you do not get a reply.
  5. rouxx

    rouxx Lead commenter

    I would have thought by the time you have written the carefully crafted email and updated the CV you might as well go the whole hog and do the application. Particularly as others have said they might consider your email and CV to be the application, or the email might just get ignored. Many schools appoint before closing dates so best to be quick off the mark.

    Applications do take time, but once you have the outline of your letter it is a matter of fine tuning and careful tailoring to ensure it fits with the particular school.
    T0nyGT likes this.
  6. dumbbells66

    dumbbells66 Lead commenter

    You may also want to consider that most of these schools do literary get 100's of applications for each post, especially if its in a desirable place. If you want to work there, then i will bet others will too. Remember the whole world is applying to these schools. The HR departments in these schools can be very busy and may just ignore you. If you are making the effort to write the email, then just send your cv and apply anyway.
  7. wrldtrvlr123

    wrldtrvlr123 Occasional commenter

    Most schools will have highly desirable qualities in mind that they want to see in their ideal candidates. Most of these schools will consider candidates that do not actually possess all of these qualities.

    IB schools in particular will ideally want to hire candidates with the relevant training and successful experience teaching IB. Many/most of those same schools do hire teachers anyway every year without that experience and training. As others have posted, you are better off just applying then waiting and hoping someone will answer your questions.
  8. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    Remember that practically all UK teachers who go abroad for the first time don't have IB experience. I'd apply unless IB experience was 'essential'. I'm not sure I agree that applying is going to use up a lot of time. Yes, the first one or two take ages but after that, it's just a tweaking exercise.
    Mr_Frosty likes this.
  9. amysdad

    amysdad Established commenter

    Remember that some of these IB schools will use the same job description for primary and secondary teachers. As a secondary teacher, if I see "IB experience desired" then - as I don't have that yet - my application will probably not get a look. In primary, though, it's less essential as the PYP isn't really that far away from most modern teaching and if you're as experienced as you are it's less of an issue for them. You will have to do the IB training at some point - you can do this online if you want, though.

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