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People hired over you?
Old 10-05-2011, 08:42 PM
 
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This is probably going to sound a bit creepy, but I promise I only do this out of sheer curiosity! But when I find out the name of who was hired for a position over me, sometimes I google them. Mainly when I was *that* close to having been hired.

Anyways, this job that I was second choice for that I *really* wanted, the principal had told me that the person she chose over me simply had more experience teaching kindergarten and preschool, which she felt would be more reassuring to parents with a change mid-year (a 30 year vet retired late September). She assured me that it was a very tough choice. I took that to mean the new hire had taught K before, and had been a preschool teacher. Umm, no. She was an associate daycare teacher for about a year and was a teacher assistant at a private school for a school year. She has a masters degree, but her teacher prep program was only a year long. Her BA isn't even in anything related to education - she was a drama major!

So a daycare teacher, I don't think of that as "teaching experience" per say. Yes you bond with kids, and teach them. But I nannied a 5 yr old and a 2 yr old for a year; isn't that similar? And teacher assistants don't do that much teaching, from what I've heard from people who have worked those jobs. I know it varies. They may assist with lessons and lead small groups or sometimes the whole class, but a lot of their duties include lunch or recess duty, prepping materials, grading, etc etc. But during my 3 year teacher prep program, I spent the first two years "working" (no pay) as a practicum student in K, 2nd, and 3rd grade classrooms. I taught small group lessons, whole class lessons, prepped and made copies, did bulletin boards. Whatever my mentor teacher asked me to do. My third year of school was my intern year, and during the fall and winter I was in the classroom slowly taking on more responsibilities, and spent the entire spring student teaching full day K. In addition to getting my K-8 endorsement during my program, my major was Special Ed. I'm not trying to sound full of myself, but I just don't see why her qualifications would make her a better choice than me. I know it isn't *only* qualifications, but also how you connect with the group. I connected great with the principal and K staff, so I'm assuming she did too.

I just don't understand how being a daycare teacher and a teaching assistant makes a drama major such a better choice than me, and more reassuring to the parents.


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Old 10-06-2011, 06:15 AM
 
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They always say they went with a more experienced candidate. I have 8 years of teaching experience, plus all my training, plus life experience. I've been told that only to find out later they hired someone who was 21 and fresh out of school.

It's just an easy way for the principal to "let you down easy."
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You are going to get a job
Old 10-06-2011, 06:27 AM
 
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SunShining, I know this is easy for me to say (and please remind me of this if I don't get this job I just interviewed for!) but the fact that they hired this person over you does not mean you weren't extremely qualified. I have heard from principals that sometimes the decision making process is excruciatingly difficult and it sounds like they really had a hard time choosing. It could be any little thing. Maybe they looked at her preschool stuff as actual paid work experience. You're right, it doesn't mean she was better for the job than you, but they had to pick someone, and for whatever reason, they chose her.

I am a believer that everything happens for a reason. If you didn't get this, it's because there is something better in store for you. Hopefully soon, you'll find out what it is.

hang in there!
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Just an idea.
Old 10-06-2011, 06:51 AM
 
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If the principal was telling you the truth, it is possible that she might have tweaked her resume and talked about her experiences a little differently than they actually were. It is super easy to sound like you actually taught pre-k, when in reality you were only the assistant. She observed everything the lead teacher did and had to do for the job so she could easily talk about it as if she did it herself.
Unfortunately, people are shady sometimes, and if this is the case she got a job by being so!
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I guess I'm creepy too!
Old 10-06-2011, 08:50 AM
 
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I do the exact same thing! It's soooo frustrating, so I'm right there with you! It's not fair and it really irritates me sometimes.

After I throw my little "hissy fit", I go on and tell myself "it wasn't meant to be, something else better will come along, I've made a good contact for future reference," etc. etc.

I'm sorry this happened to you and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you. It's just got to get better, right?!!


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Old 10-06-2011, 09:56 AM
 
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I'm creepy too then! I'm sure many of have done this. I'm always interested to know who got the job over me, and why. The last time I lost out on a job, I found out (via the secretary who I know well) that the only reason I wasn't hired was because I am female, and they needed to hire a guy. The secretary said the admins knew they should hire me and I was the best candidate, but they had a quota to fill. I also knew the guy because he did subbing in the school while I was filling an LTS position. He wasn't the most popular among the staff and students did not like him. Guess what... he got canned at the end of that year. Rumor was he didn't know what he was doing. That position opened back up, and again I lost out to a guy. So aggravating!
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Old 10-06-2011, 11:52 AM
 
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I'm so glad I'm not the only one who does this! I don't feel as creepy now

I'm over not getting this job, but I feel like I should've got it. Especially after finding out about her work history. I suppose it's possible she could've embellished on her resume or during the interview. I just really wish the principal could tell me exactly what them choose her over me.

Velouria - how frustrating that they only needed to meet a quota! It's a shame schools have to meet things like that and can't just hire the best person for the job.

Even though I didn't get a regular teaching job, I started subbing this week and I have to say that I love not having to plan, prep and grade! I also love that I don't have to work every day. I'm sure subbing will take its toll on me eventually, but now it's fine.
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Old 10-06-2011, 06:29 PM
 
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I think it's just an easier to say "the other candidate had more experience" than what might be the truth- they just connected with that candidate more than they did with you, for whatever reason.

I believe a lot of hiring decisions are made this way, but principals don't want to admit it. Maybe this candidate went to the same college that the P did, or maybe the P had been a drama major at one time (or had always wanted to be), or maybe the P is friends with this candidate's parents. It could have been anything- but whatever it was made the P feel connected to this person and he/she based the hiring decision on that.

You never know what the real connection is. I was hired once because I had grown up in the same area as the P, and he felt that people from that area had a great work ethic. He actually told me this later, that he had based his hiring decision on this belief.

I'm sorry you didn't get the job. Don't take it personally.
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Old 10-06-2011, 07:54 PM
 
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First of all, I think "the other person had more experience" is s.o.p. (standard operating procedure) for principals to say to teachers who didn't get the position. I would let it go in one ear and out the other.

I know of two different interviewing scenarios:

Scenario #1 - Committee interview
I've sat on several interviewing committees and I found it amazing what people based their decision for hiring on. Many times it was some small thing that a person on the committee could connect/relate to. This is a hypothetical situation that could happen: You brought in examples of some of the activities you did with your students. Maybe one of the teachers on the committee does a unit like yours so she feels a kinship. Suddenly, she's your advocate when it comes time to vote for who to recommend for hiring. The opposite side of the spectrum that I've seen happen time and time again. . . . an amazing candidate comes in. She went to a top tier school, wonderful grades, solid experience, you can tell she an over-achiever, a teacher that if your personal child was going to be in that grade that year you would promise your principal a year's supply of chocolate if he/she put your child in this teacher's class . . . . you get the picture of candidate number #2. But, guess what . . . number #2 doesn't get hired. You are shocked, you voted for her because you are thinking like a mom, a possible parent of her student someday. But, the majority of the other teachers on the committee didn't vote for her. Do you know why? They were threatened by candidate #2. If she was hired, suddenly parents would want their children in her class, the parents would begin complaining about what they do because they aren't doing all the amazing things that this teacher is doing . . . she would raise the bar and force them to work harder.

Scenario #2 - Principal interview

Principals, like teachers, come in all shapes and sizes with a wide variety of likes and dislikes. I've taught for a few principals who had profiles for who they hired. In fact, you could look at the teachers in these schools and tell exactly who these principals hired because the profile was sooo evident.

Principal 1 - He hired 3 different types of teachers. It was either someone his father recommended. His dad was an educ. professor at a local college. Or he hired blonde, bubbly, thin teachers usually in the age 22 - 30 range.

Principal 2 - He hired for personality. He wanted someone who was "nice", not a dominate personality who would confront him, someone who would please parents, get along with other faculty members, and be nice to the students. He didn't care how long you had taught, where you went to college, how you taught reading, his biggest thing was hiring nice people.

Principal 3 - hired teachers with 0- 4 years of experience. He felt these were "trainable". He hated it when the veteran teachers "bucked" his system/new ideas.


The bottom line is there isn't a formula for getting hired. It's not an exact science, unfortunately. The only advice I can give you is to not take it personally. I know that is very difficult. But, so many times it's something small that gets the person the job.
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Velouria and crowcy
Old 10-07-2011, 06:33 AM
 
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Velouria: Have you considered a sex change?! That is too frustrating - who can compete with that?!

crowcy: Your insight was invaluable - thanks so much! Being "new" to the game, it just never makes sense, but your insight makes it a little more tolerable.


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Old 10-07-2011, 03:06 PM
 
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The other thing I forgot to mention is advice from my DH . . . .

My DH is a manager in the corporate world and hires people all the time. What he tells me is to get over the first hurdle:
*Have good grades
*Have good references
*Fill out your applications correctly (completely with correct grammar and no typos) - yes, the little things will throw your application in "file 13". Have a friend double check before you submit any application!
****THIS IS THE BIGGIE . . . . HE SAYS TO IGNORE WHAT HUMAN RESOURCE SAYS TO DO! As a teacher, we are taught to follow the rules, so I think this is hard for us to do. You know how on every website it says to submit your application and the principal or human resource will contact you. He said managers hate this! He said most managers think h.r. people are control freaks, who are they to tell me who I can and can not interview?!!! His suggestion is to send a SHORT (emphasis on short) e-mail to the principals of the schools with openings where you would like to teach. The e-mail should be personal (not a generic one) stating in one or two sentences something that qualifies you for the position that is available. I.E. I have applied with your district for the second grade position at your school. With ten years of experience, five of these at the second grade level, I feel I could be a good fit for your school." Then he said to attach your resume. The principal can look up your application if he wants further information. The secret (he says)is to e-mail rather than stopping in to drop off your resume or calling. An e-mail is fast, not too aggressive, and even if he's already interviewed someone he plans to hire, many times if he thinks you're a viable candidate, he will forward your e-mail to another principal with an opening. But, if you drop off a resume or call, he's not going to take the time to call a principal or put your resume in the school mail.

2nd hurdle: You get called for an interview. This is his next advice:
*You should wear navy or black dress or pant suit with cream or white shirt, no perfume, if wear jewelry only simple chain necklace or pearls and stud earrings, nails should be trimmed neatly, if polished keep the color very muted, shoes should be closed toe with 2 inch heels or less.

*By the time he calls someone for an interview, he's already checked their references and qualifications so he knows they could do the job. What's he's interviewing them for is to see how he/she would fit in with the company (school) and more specifically how he/she would fit in with the team with the open position. To him (and many of the managers he knows) the interview is all about your personality. Now I know there are times when you wonder why you didn't get the job and this is what he said (when I've had those times):

*It depends on what personality/dynamics of the team is. I.E. My DH had a team of young ones (most had less than 5 years of experience), when he interviewed he was looking for a "motherly" "nurturing" type who enjoys mentoring. Not every person enjoys mentoring so this would not be a good fit for all personalities.

He had another team that was filled with ivy league grads, very competitive, type A's . . . he interviewed one person who was qualified but who was sweet but would have been "eaten alive" by this team.

He had another team that was resistant to change, but the company was going through a lot of changes. He intentionally hired a "lone wolf" for this team because he didn't want someone who would get into the "group think" of the team and keep doing things the "old way of doing business". The lone wolf came in and did the new way and eventually became the "go to" person for the team because the "old guard" saw how the changes could be implemented.

So, do you see how he could have interviewed 12 different people for these teams but he needed specific personalities because of the dynamics of the team? I think in the olden days it was easier to get a job teaching because there wasn't the big push for working as a team, planning as a team, collaboration, etc. Because of this "team philosophy", I think principals look at teacher's personalities in interviews more than ever. If you ever visit the vent board you will hear vents about people who work on teams who are not working well together, so I understand why a principal would want to do this. If you didn't get a job, it may not be a reflection of you, but rather you weren't a good fit for their team. In all honesty, I've been on teams when I wasn't a good fit, it's better to wait for the right one. Just like we teach our kids to get a "just right" book, you want a "just right" team!!! Good luck in your search!
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Old 10-07-2011, 07:23 PM
 
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I've done that too. A position I interviewed for and was so close to went to someone less experienced. But at least the director (a preschool) was honest and said she didn't want to hire someone with their teacher certification cause I'm "overqualified" and looking for better paying jobs, which is true. But I would've commited to the job for at least a year. However they went with someone who had an associates degree who doesn't even have the option of getting hired in the public schools since she wasn't certified. But I ended up getting hired at another preschool that actually loved that i was a certified teacher. In fact my school will only hire certified PreK teachers. We have infants-PreK. I teach 3 year olds.
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Old 10-07-2011, 07:34 PM
 
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Thank you for the insight about why some people are hired! I can believe everything people have said but a lot of those things frustrate me. I'm over the fact that I didn't get that job, and I'm okay with it now. Just finding out the history of the teacher they did hire struck a nerve and I needed to get that vent out. I just finished my first week of subbing, and I taught 1st, 3/4 split, 4th, and 6th this week at 3 different schools. I did my student teaching in K and had a 2nd grade practicum, so now I've technically taught every grade except 5th! It feels so good to be able to say that. K has always been my favorite and still is, but if I had gotten that job I know for a fact I never would've tried teaching 6th grade

TXlady - I had the exact same problem when I interviewed for a Pre-K Assistant job. I met with the lead teacher and the director and I could tell they were uneasy about my being overqualified. The director had stated that they were looking for someone to commit for at least the school year, and then she said something about how I "could teach in a public or private school since I have my certifications and everything." I wanted to say, it's true, I *could* teach in a public or private school, but they won't hire me!! I also would've been willing to commit to the whole school year if I would've gotten the Pre-K job, but I think they wanted a college student who didn't have a chance at a better paying job in the near future.
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Thank YOU!
Old 10-08-2011, 07:05 AM
 
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Thank you so much for this crowcy. Out of all of the great advice I've gotten on this website, this is some of the best advice of all.

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Old 10-08-2011, 12:37 PM
 
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You're welcome! I'm happy to help!!!
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Old 10-09-2011, 08:25 AM
 
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Thanks again for the added information. I KNOW in my head all of these things, but it still crushes my heart when I don't get the job. I know I will end up where I'm supposed to be and it will be a great, great job because it will be the right one! In the meantime, I guess I'm learning patience (darn it)!

Your DH sounds like a doll - tell him thanks too!
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I feel better already
Old 10-09-2011, 02:29 PM
 
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Reading this type of thing makes me feel so much better about my job hunt.

I honestly feel as if it has given me a little bit of an edge in confidence that I can bring with me to my next interview: I know there are many different reasons that certain people get hired, & I can realize that it may not have had anything to do with me or my qualifications, instead of always beating myself up about it.

It is terrible that they make us stress about things like this (for some of us, for years), but it really helps to hear others' insights & words of advice. Thanks so much!
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Me too!
Old 10-13-2011, 06:00 AM
 
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I do the same thing at times. I like to see who was hired and where they worked previously. I went on an interview for a Basic Skills position. The person who was hired over me had the following: Substitute Teaching and extended school year teacher (for one month in the summer). I had the following: Substitute teaching, and 2 years experience as a tutor at a learning center. The other person got chosen over me. I would think my experience would trump this other person's. But I guess she performed better during the demo lesson. Who knows. I did try to ask the principal what I could do to improve myself during interviews... but never got a response.
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Conspiracy Theory....
Old 10-15-2011, 05:13 AM
 
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iHiring practices of administrators or managers (in corporate world) vary.

Years of experience are only one indicator of how well a candidate will perform.

The team dynamic is a critical piece of the puzzle, yet highly subjective one.

So no matter what reason a candidate is given for why they were not chosen, it would most likely not seem satisfactory to them.

Truthfully, when I was a bank manager (for 20 years), I had to contemplate a myriad of factors when making hiring decisions.

Move on, keep searching. The right position for YOU is out there.
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thank you!
Old 10-16-2011, 03:50 PM
 
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Reading your post has helped me so much. I have been trying, without success, to get a teaching position for years. I only sub. Repeatedly, someone fresh out of college gets hired and I am not even considered. My feelings are hurt and I feel like a failure, but your post helps me see a different perspective. Thanks for taking time to post.
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