As principals spend the Summer months scrambling to fill vacant teaching positions, aspiring teachers can use that opportunity to maximize gaining employment. Recent college graduates and career switchers can find the Summer the perfect time to get a foot in the door. Due to the high number of turnovers and transfers during the break, it is the best time to land one of those vacant positions.Like other future teachers worried about securing a teaching job in the critical time before the start of the school year, I did these four things to grab a position during those hectic months:
Check Vacancies Frequently
I got my first teaching position by checking for vacancies frequently on desired school district websites and saved those pages by bookmarking them. Keep in mind that some districts update their websites up to three times a week as vacancies come available, so this was a daily task. I avoided missing out on vacancies I was qualified for by checking the district online job boards often.
Research Alternative Schools
There are many local and charter schools that fly under the radar. These hidden gems often advertise solely on their websites or through referrals. I made sure their mission statements aligned with my philosophy of teaching so I wouldn’t be blindsided if offered one of these positions. Using this strategy, I was able to find a sweet job teaching at an independent school which was a temporary relief from the public school sector.
Market and Highlight Unusual Teaching Skills
Marketing my highly desired teaching skills and experiences always worked for me. Since I had exclusive experience teaching a particular population of students, I highlighted that particular expertise and ran with it. My cover letters, emails, and phone inquiries always focused on this advantage.
Pay a Visit
The last thing I did was go old school by giving prospective schools a call or visit during the Summer Break as classes were not in session. If you feel better sending an email, that is fine too, but that takes away the chance for you to impress the right administrator and possibly getting hired on the spot like I did!
Taking advantage of the revolving teaching vacancies during the Summer months can greatly increase your chances of being hired. Applying for these positions during the school year can be downright competitive and almost impossible to gain as the school year has stabilized and there aren’t that many open positions. Keep checking and researching local schools and don’t be afraid to show your face to potential employers.