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Internal competition

Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by jellylegs11, Nov 4, 2018.

  1. jellylegs11

    jellylegs11 New commenter

    I've applied for a headship for a school I visited last week and have since discovered that the deputy is applying too. She has been stand-in headteacher this term.
    Really disappointed as I really liked the school but in all reality should I just assume it's most likely going to be hers?
  2. sparkleghirl

    sparkleghirl Star commenter

    Assume nothing - give it your best shot.

    It's not always the internal candidate who gets it. And I imagine it's difficult to refuse an interview to an internal candidate, however suitable.

    Good luck!
    JohnJCazorla and rachholden like this.
  3. CarrieV

    CarrieV Lead commenter

    Possibly, but I applied as deputy at my then current school and didn't get it, subsequently applied to another school and was up against two in-service deputies and was successful against both!
  4. krisgreg30

    krisgreg30 Occasional commenter

    Definitely doesn't mean that they have it secured. Go in there and give it your best shot. As previous people have said it has gone against them or in their advantage by not being the internal candidate.
    It may be that people aren't happy with the job they have done or may just purely want to go in a different direction with leadership by bringing in a new face. You may also have experiences that they don't that they will prefer. Good luck :)
    agathamorse and rachholden like this.
  5. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    No you should not assume that. There have many similar threads here over the years and all have concluded that the internal candidate does not have the job in the bag and you shouldn't assume they have been earmarked for the job. As a governor I've been on many HT appointment panels. About half had an internal candidate. We have never appointed the internal candidate. You may have a different governors panel to mine, maybe they do think the sun shines out the DHT's backside, but go into it assuming that the best candidate on the day will get appointed.

    Bear in mind that

    -- Governors often want a change, 'new blood', new ideas, when appointing a head. Not more of the same. An outsider has the advantage there.

    -- Being well known to the governors is a double-edged sword. They also know the internal candidate's weaknesses all too well.

    -- A standard question will be on the lines "What would you do to raise standards here?" It's tricky for the existing DHT. You don't want to undermine the current head but you are vulnerable to the question "So why didn't you do that during your last 7 years as DHT....?" - even if it's an unspoken question in governors' heads.

    -- If it's an LA school there may be an LA representative present, or if not some other professional advisor. In my experience they will be rigorous in their comments on the candidates and being the existing deputy will count for nothing.

    The only advantage the internal candidate has in my experience is they usually get put through to the interview stage even if they are not that strong.
  6. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    No. Don't assume anything. Go feeling positive and show them you can do it. Go with a defeatist attitude and you won't stand a chance.

    Good luck, keep us posted.
    agathamorse and rachholden like this.
  7. jellylegs11

    jellylegs11 New commenter

    Thank you so much for your replies. Yes I need to stop putting my head down. I've been on plenty of interview panels and you are right on so many levels and yes I've experienced the same. Last time it was an lea advisor who queried the existing member of staff further and they didn't get it.
    Just keep questioning every thing!

    Annoyingly, even if I do get shortlisted the interview isn't until mid Jan!

    That's a long wait!
    I'll keep you posted!
    agathamorse likes this.
  8. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    I know of a long-standing DH who was encouraged to apply by the Govs. Didn't even get shortlisted.
    agathamorse likes this.
  9. roberwilson_01

    roberwilson_01 New commenter

    No, that's not the thing in the case of choosing a head teacher. The head teacher is selected by the school council on the basis of the knowledge and skills of the representative as well as on the experience. so that post of head teacher will goes to the candidate who is good fit for that.
  10. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Not in England. There is no "school council" in England. Headteachers are selected and appointed by the governing body (in LA schools) or the Academy Trust (in academies).

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