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Interview clothes

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by claire810, May 16, 2011.

  1. Hi all, I have interview coming up in a primary school and I am not sure what to wear!
    I always thought suit but I really am not that comfortable dressed in one - especially when teaching. I had an interview quite recently for a tlr job and the other two candidates were dressed smartly but did not wear a suit or jacket - cardigans I think.
    I want to create a good impression but obviously want to feel confident in what I'm wearing and me!

  2. lexa

    lexa New commenter

    I had 2 interviews last term. I went in a suit for my first interview. I didn't get the job. I secured the second one and had opted for a dress and cardigan. I don't think the outfit swung it, mind you!
    I guess the suit might be the safest option but clothes can make a difference to how you feel and act. I feel uncomfortable in a suit and think a small amount of that shows, however hard I try not to let it. I'd be interested to know what proportion of candidates don't opt for a suit nowadays.

  3. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I've just been for an interview this morning & opted for a skirt, top & waistcoat witha lightweight jacket (I'm female by the way) as it was for an independant school & I wanted to look quite formal. If I'm invited back for a second interview to teach I will stick to a skirt & top (high -necked) with a gilet for the teaching or a suitable dress & add a jacket for the 'formal interview'.
    If a state school with a fairly 'loose' dress code I would have though a dress & cardi would be perfectly acceptable.
    Anecdotally, a couple of years ago I was told I was 'over-dressed' for the 'catchment-area of the school' as it might alienate some of the children, so it might pay to find out the catchment area.
  4. Shirt, skirt, a cardi and flats.
    I've always been told suit and heels but I don't feel comfortable in either and I don't want to spend all day fidgeting or being unable to walk.
  5. Is it not ok to wear smart trousers and a jacket/cardi? In a primary interview?
  6. haywire

    haywire New commenter

    I would/have worn trousers and have felt smart and not out of place with other candidates.
  7. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I always say if it's what I call 'littlies' , trousers are by far the best option, but if it's upper KS2 there's not the same problem bending down sitting cross-legged etc.so it's up to you.
  8. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I'd say that if this next post is for a TLR or other management post then a suit or at least a jacket is a better option than a cardi.

    You need to look like a teacher in a management role.
  9. Georgia99

    Georgia99 New commenter

    I wore suits to both my interviews. In the first interiew the girl who got the job had trousers, a top and cardi. At the second interview it was the same again, she was not wearing a suit either.
    I wore a suit because I didn't want to give them any reason to dislike me but to be honest I think they are looking for the best person for their school and so clothes are irrelevant to some extent.

  10. I've never worn a suit. As long as you look smart you'll be fine.

    I'm currently having a major dilemna. Option a) a cream dress with large brightly coloured flowers around the waist band and bottom. It's very me. It's very pretty. It's also rather bright. Eye-catching, you might say.

    Option b) boring boring grey tunic. I look like I'm going for a job at a bank. Or should be on The Apprentice. It's not me. But it's smart and inoffensive.

    I don't want to blend in with the crowd. But is wearing a bright dress standing out for all the wrong reasons? Hmmm...
  11. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    re your dilemma rachwins:
    depends whether your ging for Prim. or Sec. & possible which subject area. In my exprience Primaries are more likely to go with someone with personality & art/ creative subjects have more allowance on dress codes.
  12. I'm primary!
    I went for the coloured one. Came back to bite me though, in my feedback, he said that it was unfortunate that I was so tall as although other people would be able to get away with wearing that dress, on me it appeared a little short (I have 7-foot legs) and I might come across a overly sensitive governor who disapproves!!
    This wasn't the reason why I didn't get the job though, thankfully!
    He also told me about one governor he once interviewed with, who refused to let a candidate through because he was wearing Dennis the Menace socks.
    I have listened, and am now wearing the boring dull grey tunic, with a bit of accessorisation!
  13. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    The very fact that this was pointed out means that the Head also disapproved; it would not be normal to comment of what a candidate wore in the feedback.
    I would also guess that it may well have influenced the panel in their decision, as it showed poor judgment of what is appropriate wear. I'm sorry - you didn't want to hear this, but this is what I believe.
    You are not trying to look attractive in an interview, you are trying to impress with your professionalism. A dress or skirt that is too short, a top that is too low-cut, lots of make-up, jangly jewellery - these are all distractions in an interview situation.
    A point that I always make to you young ladies is:
    You are trying to get appointed, not dated.
    Your clothes need to be clean and tidy, and above all professional. Professional.
    Check also that the clothes are in good condition: this photo of her jacket hem unsewn and hanging down is going to haunt poor Kate for the rest of her life.



    Good luck for the next application.

    TheoGriff. Member of the TES Careers Advice Service.

    do Application and Interview one-to-ones, and also contribute to the
    Job Application Workshops. We look at application letters, executive
    summaries and interviews, with practical exercises that people really

    The Job Seminars are all sold out, I'm afraid, but Julia is planning some more later on.

    A new SLT seminar is available now on 22 May <u>www.tesweekendworkshop32.eventbrite.com</u>, and another is planned for 18 June.

    E-mail Julia on advice@tsleducation.com for how to book a meeting with me personally.

    Look forward to seeing you!

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