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How many candidates do schools generally interview?

Discussion in 'Teaching overseas' started by GoldenBuddha, Feb 19, 2012.

  1. Hi all,
    I know this is a question with many answers but I'm looking for a general impression.
    I have been offered an interview for an international post. The interview is in England. I was wondering whether it is likely that they are interviewing loads of candidates or just a few. What usually happens when a company (reputable) comes over?
    I'm wondering whether they stay a while, interview loads of candidates at various central locations and then pick from the masses they met or whether its a more select few. I suppose I want a statistical likelihood.
    Any ideas?
    GB

     
  2. Syria1

    Syria1 New commenter

    We would ideally hope to interview around 5 candidates for every position. However the dance of the veils is complicated by the fact that some positions attract large numbers of applicants (PE or Primary teaching positions, History, Geography etc) wheras others (Mathematics) attract fewer. We also have the issue of teaching couples applying as well. So it is a complex mix.
    So a shortage subject will get you a better chance of interview if you can spell, write a letter about our school rather than just yourself, and have a decent picture on the front rather than one of yourself in a disreputable bar.
    Good luck - an interview can mean that they think you could do the job - now you need to prove it to them. They need to employ someone; why should it not be you?

     
  3. MisterMaker

    MisterMaker Occasional commenter

    4 to 6; depending on quality of applicants. I have around 40 to 50 applicants per post for my current recruitment round, but that is average overall and not consistant across all subjects. Interestly, History is currently lacking in quality at the moment. Lots for Science & Maths.
    However, not all schools are so fortunate. I became aware that for one post many years back for which I was offered the job; I was the only applicant. I turned the post down. Some places are difficult to attract candidates for, some places attract the wrong type of candiates and some places are lucky to be right place right time right package.
     
  4. arewethereyet

    arewethereyet New commenter

    If you're flying anywhere for an interview I would try to line up a few interviews for the time you're in the country. And I'd also consider contacting the school to check you are a real candidate. This year I have flown to 2 different places for a couple of job interviews and I was never going to get the job (basically they had not read my cv fully, which became apparent at the interview). And I know this has happened to a couple of friends too. It's a bit of a **** take really, schools should make sure they read our applications fully before asking us to go to the expense of flying round the world for interviews.
     
  5. I am in the UK interviewing now - you could be one of my nterviewees! I aim for 3 for each position by the time arrive - I've had a few receive and accept other offers before I get to them - but agree certain subjects / key stages receive less applications; I get 100+ primary applicants (particularly KS2, less than 20 realistic applications each for maths, science and foundation stage)
     
  6. Thanks for your help everyone. It's good to know that the "cattle market" I imagined doesn't happen.
    I don't have to teach for my interview (in the UK) -is this common practice?
    Also, I dont want to get the cart before the horse here, but how soon after interviews do job offers usually happen?
    Oh and any interview tips? Questions to expect? Is it usual for a few trick questions? Or are interviewers usually judging whether they could work with you and you would fit into their team?
    I know I've asked loads of questions but this is only my third ever teaching interview and my first international one.
    @neanderthal it isn't until next month so I don't will be you who gets to speak to this smiley but nervous lady on the day :)

     
  7. Oh and @syria1thank you for your super positive but realistic post! It's really nice to be encouraged by someone I don't even know :)
    I'll post on here the result of the interview...be it whether I am celebrating with a drop of shiraz or sobbing into my cup of tea :)
     
  8. Syria1

    Syria1 New commenter


    I don't have to teach for my interview (in the UK) -is this common practice?
    Well, since we can't travel with our School in tow, we can't really see you teach, can we? In fact one of my recent candidates had a short video of him teaching a class in his current school on his laptop to demonstrate a point he was making.
    Also, I dont want to get the cart before the horse here, but how soon after interviews do job offers usually happen?
    That depends. If we are interviewing for 10 days or so, it will take us about 3-4 days to decide once we are back. Then initial e-mails etc go out and we wait for the reponses. We would try to have a back-up candidate for every position, just in case the preferred choice had already accepted elsewhere or refused our offer. But I will not tell you if you are the insurance candidate. So if you need to wait, just wait. Good schools will let you know. We do.
    Oh
    and any interview tips? Questions to expect? Is it usual for a few
    trick questions? Or are interviewers usually judging whether they could
    work with you and you would fit into their team?

    Just the same as a 'normal' interview in the UK. Questions on your teaching practice, good teaching, lessons you have learnt from lessons which did not go so well - all standard. Assessment for Learning, responsibilities, work with gifted and talented students we would all cover. Bring a portfolio of evidence with you - student work, projects, lesson plans, news articles about a student you taught - all is useful and it will allow you to be active in the interview rather than a passive recipient of questions. We would also go through your CV and qualifications in detail - so make sure you can explain any gaps or changes of school or career. Also be prepared to answer questions on your academic subject outside the curriculum. No trick questions, but we do probe quite critically - after all, we need to be sure that the candidate will fit into our School and also that we are a good fit for them. And please do think carefully about why you want to come and work for the School and live in the country - it is a life-changing experience.

     

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