How to Get a Job as a High School Teacher
"Schools do not just want someone who is an excellent lecturer or has great 'platform' skills," says National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel in an email. "Secondary students don't want someone to stand there and lecture." Schools want dynamic, knowledgeable educators who are attuned to the needs of individual students. While shaping and presenting yourself as the ideal candidate is important, how you convey that information to prospective schools is equally crucial. "On securing a secondary-school position, I would NEVER advise anyone only to go through HR," says Van Roekel. "Prospective secondary teachers should target the principals and department chairs of the schools where they would like to teach and let them know why they would like to teach there." Further, Van Roekel recommends: "Prospective candidates would be well served to seek out opportunities to become part of the community in advance of seeking employment."
Interview Questions Submitted by Real High School Teachers
"How do you expect to deal with the diversity of our students?" - Liberty Union High School District Teacher Candidate (Location Unknown)
"What would you do if you had a discipline problem in the classroom?" - Iredell-Statesville School System High School Spanish Teacher Candidate (Location Unknown)
"Do you have your own website? - Jefferson Union High School District Teacher Candidate (Location Unknown)
What is the Job Like?
A secondary school teacher can have a fulfilling job, impacting the futures of young students. Teaching students in their formative teenage years, these educators play a key role in their students' outlooks and prospects. Instructors also experience a level of autonomy in the classroom that can cause feelings of isolation or empowerment. This difference usually stems from the conditions established by the school - public or private. Support for teachers from the administration and parents can vary drastically from school to school. As the American population increases in ethnic, racial, and religious diversity, teachers will have to bridge cross-cultural gaps. Effectively imparting their educational subjects will demand a greater understanding of their students' backgrounds. According to Van Roekel, "It's not enough to know your subject - you have to know how to teach it."
Real Reviews From High School Teachers
+ "Working with students is very rewarding, even those that are challenging. Strong sense of accomplishment when you experience success." - Chicago Public Schools High School Teacher (Chicago, IL)
+ "Great job benefits such as medical/dental/optical insurance with a solid retirement plan. Reliable pay. Many days off that are PAID." - New York City Department of Education High School Teacher (Brooklyn, NY)
- "County budget problems make future salary and benefits costs unknown." - Montgomery County Public Schools High School Teacher (Location Unknown)
- "The school board is often embroiled in some controversy. They spend lots of money on speakers for professional learning and then state that we will now need furloughs." - Cobb County School District High School Teacher (Kennesaw, GA)
Review information and interview questions supplied by Glassdoor.