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Just need a good old moan!

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by escapeintoabook, Mar 30, 2012.

  1. Just had an email today to say thanks for applying but you were unsuccessful in getting to the interview stage - I received another one of these disappointing emails on Monday for a different job, so feeling rubbish now and in need of a good moan, hence why i'm writing this.
    I'm so frustrated about not knowing what is wrong wtih my applications. I spend hours on each application I do, I visit the school, and I make sure I tailor my application to their person specification. I've also done one of Theo's executive summaries (albeit only tried it on one application so far..... felt a bit like overkill in a way though, repeating my personal statement in bullet point form - or maybe i'm just going about the executive summary incorrectly, I don't know).
    I qualified last summer and while I was a student I did get at least interviews for most jobs I applied for. I ended up getting a temporary contract for a term, which okay, was not what I ideally wanted, it was better than nothing so I decided to take it. So now i've got one term of induction under my belt and although it was quite challenging in some ways, I left my last school after getting my 1 induction term signed off on good terms. I can now say a bit more in my personal statement and have a better understanding of many things now that I have more experience, so I thought that getting interviews would be easier, not harder.
    So, unless i've just been a bit unlucky so far in my job hunting this year, it could be one of these things that's letting me down:
    - My reference. - But i've been accepted by a supply agency with this reference and although not a perfect experience I left my last school on good terms so surely it's okay?
    - My personal statement - Maybe it sounds too robotic or something since I structure it basically in short, concise paragraphs that each relate to their person specification points, or a group of related points. Or maybe it's too long (1 and a bit pages usually of mostly short paragraphs). How do other people structure their personal statements?
    - The fact i'm doing supply - I've read on here in various places that it looks undesirable if you've been doing supply, i'm guessing because you're not having CPD, but there's not much I can do about that in my situation. I think supply is doing me good; it's throwing me in the deep end and improving my confidence and my experience with different age groups.
    - My age...? I'm young and married....maybe they think i'll be swanning off to have a baby not long after taking me on. Illegal (and probably a totally wrong assumption) I know, but I bet it does sometimes cross the minds of some people on a selection committee!
    Other than those things I just don't know what the heck is wrong with my applications. There's not much I can change either apart from my personal statement, but even if I change it, I'm still none the wiser if i've actually improved it or not. Argh! I just hope all my hard work at school, college, and getting a First Class degree at Uni was not a waste of time. Well I think that is my moan over with now, and I actually feel slightly better now that it's written down and not all swirling around in my head. Well done and thank you if you got to the end of this! [​IMG]
  2. I've not qualified , let alone managed to get on the course but are you bigging up the good parts of doing supply work in your personal statement... Like saying that you have managed to experience a lot of different schools, learning environments, abilities, behaviour management etc and have managed to learn from these experiences, giving a short example of what you have learned. I'm sure you are doing this already but are you making sure you illustrate in the paragraphs how you meet/ exceed their personal spec? not just saying you are enthusiastic but giving an example? Also although the P.S should be formal and professional is there a bit of your personality in there as well? Last thing, I promise, do you put in an executive summary like Theo suggests these appear to be very successful... Emsbeth
  3. I qualified to teach finishing my PGCE in 2010....also completed one term of induction at the same school where I did my second placement. Since then I have been applying for jobs with no luck and had to do supply as well as office temp jobs. I have had 2 more long term roles but they were not quite long enough for induction. I feel like I have improved as a teacher and have a wider experience than when I finished my PGCE and like you spend hours on application forms, researching the schools, visiting when possible etc.....
    I teach Design and Technology and there are so few roles to apply for, especially in Textiles and I have tried for roles outside my specialism. I have changed the format, tried the executive summary, wrote in letter format, wrote under headings....anything to try and get an interview! I have only had one interview in the last year and that was for Maternity cover - they went for someone with more experience as the teacher had a lot of GCSE groups and they didn't want to risk an NQT.
    I think there are just so many applicants for each job that there could be just one sentence in it - I really don't know as I am starting to think that I will have to give up on teaching and will be going past the 4 terms that you can do of supply before starting induction. I'm not sure how this works if you started induction then haven't had chance to complete it?
    I have been asked back to schools where I have done supply for long term work and been told that if the teachers I were covering for didn't return then they would like to keep me but they have always come back to work -usually sooner than expected as well leaving me back to searching.
    Good luck!
  4. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Therein lies the big problem. This year's NQTs plus many of last year's and the years before. returning teachers after having a career break or returners who've had to relocate for family reasons- all adds up to many, many people applying for each and every post.
    Just have to keep 'plugging away' until one day. . . . that invite to interview arrives!
  5. The problem is no.4 in your post. Try putting Ms on your app.
  6. Well that might work but I'd rather be open and honest that I'm married. I like being a Mrs. and if I have to pretend not to be to get a chance at a job then there is something very wrong with the world indeed. Or maybe I'm wrong and employers do expect you to eat, sleep and be married to your job at the expense of other less important things such as ensuring the continuation of the human race. Lol. :)
  7. I don't think 'Ms' is being dishonest! It's none of their business. Does 'Mr' indicate whether a man is married or unmarried?
  8. dizzymai

    dizzymai New commenter

    I'm sorry but I think that you cannot say with any certainty that having Ms or Mrs on your job application bears any relation whatsoever to whether you get shortlisted. In fact I think that is a bit bonkers (with all due respect!). Do you really think a Headteacher would loook at an application and choose a Ms over a Mrs for that reason alone? Fudging the issue.
    I recently (Mrs and in my forties) got an interview and lost out to a much younger teacher in her twenties or maybe early thirties (I didn't ask) who could have been considered ready for babies. And I partly felt that I was too old for their staff team, all the teachers were young (and all their TAs older, bit weird). But it was probably because she was better than me or more suitable for the job.
    I also have another interview lined up as a Mrs, because I am a Mrs.
    OP could you get a colleague to read your personal statement through? Are you 'spinning' your experience to make it work for you? Maximising its positive value and impact? One of the downsides of supply I have heard is that you miss out on INSET- is there any way you could ask to be part of INSETs at a school you supply for long term?
    I think it is very tough out there- new Ofsted framework means that every school wants outstanding teachers who can spin lots of plates at the same time as moving children on 2 sublevels. It's a buyer's market at the moment. Good luck !
  9. I take your point, you're right. I might give Ms. a go then. Though the thought of being discriminated against due to being of child bearing age still makes me feel both enraged and incredibly sad at such lack of human compassion and understanding. I like to think that this kind of discrimination doesn't really happen often though, we're too civilized for that surely :-\ Anyway Ms. it is then!
  10. dizzymai

    dizzymai New commenter

    We ARE too civilised! If it were true no Mrs's would ever get jobs! Or no women of child bearing age would ever get jobs.....
    It's gimmickry! Stick to what you believe!
    Am I the only one who thinks that this is beside the point?
  11. Dizzymai, I think the points you're made are right too. I'm just open to all ideas at the moment for how to get myself to the interview stage. I don't really have anyone who is a current teacher to read my statement through, unless I get back in contact with my uni. I don't have any long term supply either as yet, though not been doing supply long so maybe something will come up in the near future. I'll have another look at the examples I'm giving of my experience I think.

    Yeah I understand that schools are under a lot of pressure with the new ofsted framework, not very pleasant at all. How I wish I could be an outstanding NQT straight away without any support!
  12. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Years ago I asked a colleague to 'read through' my applications and they suggested some improvements and said which comments made them immediately assign an application to the bin, but it still didn't help me get an interview.
  13. That's interesting, I was just thinking that unless you make a spelling mistake or cannot write in coherent sentences then it gets rather subjective from then on. I'm sure that my statement is pretty concise; I spent 3 years perfecting how to write waffle free essays at uni! Oh well, will just have to keep on plugging away at it as you say.
  14. Sorry to sound a bit mean, but it's 2012. Being a "Ms" or newly married does not equal going off on maternity leave!
    Besides, most headteachers appoint female staff of child bearing age on the assumption they will take maternity leave at some point, I imagine. On that logic no female teacher between the ages of 22 and 45 would ever get a post but I imagine that we are in the majority.
    I'm 31 and have never had a problem.
  15. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    No, I agree. I speak as a Mrs who never intended to have children and certainly as a headteacher I've never sorted applicants in terms of 'might go off on maternity leave'.

  16. I'm not saying it always happens - obviously there will be people who disagree and can say this never stopped them getting a job. But nonetheless I have heard of this happening on quite a few occasions and even seen one Head put such an application straight in the bin, so I don't think we can just say, no this is 2012 and never happens now. It was merely a suggestion to the OP to see whether it scores her more interviews - perhaps she could try as an experiment and let us know.
  17. I remember doing my sociology A level and having my eyes opened to all sorts of discrimination that everyone knows should not happen but still does. Having laws against things don't always stop some people, just turn on the news to get evidence for that, so I can empathise with your opinion there Rowntreegirl. So I'm of the opinion that by the laws of probability it probably does happen occasionally in teaching but I don't think that's the reason I haven't been getting interviews - I've not applied to enough yet and there's just a lot of competition. So I will keep trying and perhaps experiment with the Ms. if I'm getting desperate!

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