Having spent a couple of hours sifting through the latest batch of applications, I thought I'd remind some prospective teachers about a few things. 1. Uncle Theo G has written several posts about applying for jobs, far better than anything I could do. Please read a few of them to remind yourselves of the do's and don'ts. http://community.tes.co.uk/forums/77.aspx If you can't be bothered with Uncle Theo Gs advice, here's the rest of my list... 2. I am amazed at how many teachers don't know the etiquette of letter writing. When writing a letter of application include your address at the top, followed by the date. Amongst the many I spent seconds rather than minutes on today was one that contained no addresses or introductions and didn't even have a dear sir, just straight into why he's the perfect guy for the job. Not very impressive for an English teacher. 3. Try to find out the name of the person your writing to. If you really have tried and don't know the name, at least do the Dear Sir / madam, as I find this preferable to To Whom It May Concern. 4. Complete all the parts of the Application Form. Do not write, refer to my CV, (unless there is no more space left). If I wanted to look at your CV I'd have asked for it rather than an Application Form & letter. 5. The part of the application that asks for reference contact details should not be left blank. I can understand those who would prefer for referees not to be contacted unless shortlisted, although I know many HTs who don't accept that, so at least say something along those lines rather than leave it blank and appear like Johnny No Mates who can't get any references. 6. Many schools ask for photos, some because they will look for the 'right heritage', others, like me, have more relevant rational. Anyhow, when a recent photo is asked for, a standard passport type photo is better than you on the beach, in your garden or those awful looking webcam photos. It's a first chance to show how professional you can look, not how relaxed you are. When I'm not <strike>wasting</strike> spending my time on TES I'm a busy chap. I have hundreds of applications - forms and letters - to sift through. There's plenty of excellent teachers out there that you're competing against and if you want to get past the initial pre-short listing phase, please make the effort to get the basics correct. Thank you, rant over.