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Getting a job – some musings

Please note that this post has nothing really to do with getting a job, but getting the right job for you.  It’s also from the point of view of someone who is no expert in getting jobs, just that they have been lucky enough to fall on their feet a couple of times with the right job. I fully accept that the advice below may not work for everyone.

Sometimes, usually around this time of year, our PGCE students, staff and others often ask for advice on getting a job.

My top tip is to visit the school. Before even deciding to fill the form in.

A story: I recently saw an advert for an Assistant Head’s job in a school.  On paper the school sounded fantastic – just the right level of challenge.  However, within 10 minutes of entering the building I decided not to even apply for the post. Why?

  • The Head kept talking about ‘I’ and ‘me’ and not ‘we’ and ‘us'. It was clear that the school’s turn around was down to her and she wanted us to know.
  • The difficulty of working in the school was oversold.  I’m all for honesty and going in with your eyes open but I strongly believe that ‘kids are kids'. Yes, some schools are more challenging than others, but come on!
  • We didn’t get to actually speak to any staff or pupils.
  • I didn’t agree with the educational philosophy of the Head. Did I want to spend the next few years battling against or pulling in the same direction?
  • I asked about technologies for learning.  Let’s just say that I wasn’t impressed with the response……

All of this information is very personal. I have no doubt that other individuals would have thrived in the school, agreed with the Head and will work well there.  But not me.

So – next time you go for a job, visit and interview the school before they interview you.


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