Time really does fly when you are having fun (or busy with a full graduate school workload). It is hard to believe that I have reached the semester where I am actively thinking about and searching for what is next to come after graduation. Seems like only yesterday I was applying to Bank Street and now I’m applying for full-time jobs. I must admit, the job search process can be daunting, intimidating, and time-consuming. Thankfully, Bank Street understands this process and created a Job Search Support Day to offer resources, answer questions, and help alleviate some of the stress and anxiety many of us are experiencing during the job search hunt. The Office of Career Services hosted an afternoon of workshops for resume writing and interviewing skills, general state certification information, and one about finding jobs in NYC public schools.
“What are principals looking for?” is a common question shared by new teacher applicants everywhere. In New York City public schools, principals are looking for candidates that are “collaborative, reflective, committed, and passionate” according to Brent Nycz, a NYC Department of Education Teacher Recruiter and Special Education Teacher. Additionally, NYC teaching candidates should be able show that they can design coherent instruction and assessments, establish a culture for learning, manage classroom procedures and behaviors, organize physical space, reflect on their teaching, communicate with families, and demonstrate flexibility and responsiveness. This is adapted from Charlotte Danielson’s Framework for Teaching to meet the New York Department of Education’s Framework for Teaching. Looking at this list of skills I am expected to demonstrate my proficiency with, I feel prepared that my student teaching and coursework at Bank Street helps me (and all students) meet the expectations in this framework.
(Image from The Innovative Educator)
One idea that I felt came up during many of the workshops was that the job you have been waiting for is out there but you have to put yourself out there to get it. This was made more evident during the Tips on the Job Search Process workshop that featured personal job search stories from the authors of the book How To Get The Teaching Job You Want and current students and alumni of Bank Street. All of the panelists said that the job search process should be treated as a full-time job. From researching schools you are interested in, drafting custom cover letters to each school you are applying to, and practicing what you will say during interviews; preparation is key. Most importantly, as cliche as it may sound, you should be yourself! There are often more applicants than jobs and in order to make yourself stand out in the crowd, you have to figure out who you are as an educator and what you can offer that no one else can. We all have unique life experiences that have shaped who we are and that is what the hiring staff want to see and hear about.