Will Work for Paycheck

Searching for a job is extremely humbling. In economic times like these, it is even more so.

Over the past ten years, I've felt confident in my ability to always be able to find a job anywhere I would choose to move. There will always be kids and schools will always need teachers. I have a variety of certifications: Elementary, grades 1-6; Language Arts, grades 5-9; and Gifted Education, grades K-12. Taking a year off to stay home with my son seemed like no big deal when I resigned from my teaching position last May.

Then, the economy tanked.

This spring, I've been sent into a flurry of job applications and resumes. The uncertainty of the future has made Dave and me feel like it would be best for me to go back to work, just in case things get worse before they get better. I spend hours searching school district websites, looking for positions that aren't posted on the clearinghouse site. Every time the phone rings, I hope that it is a district calling to set up an interview. Mostly, I'm disappointed.

About two weeks ago, all of a sudden, my application seemed to make it into the hands of some people who make decisions. Within a single day, I had three interviews set up. Confidence washed over me and I thought that maybe I would have a teaching contract before the wedding.

I have a pretty good ability to assess how the interviews go once I leave. The phone interview went well, but was very brief, and I'm still waiting for follow-up. The interview for an elementary position was pretty tough; they asked a lot of very specific questions about teaching techniques that I haven't implemented because I haven't spent the last six years in the general education classroom. The third interview went extremely well; I quickly got a call for a second interview which I attended last week. With each passing hour, though, I knew that my chances of getting that job offer diminished. By the time the administrator called this afternoon to let me know that they'd chosen another candidate, I was completely unsurprised. Bummer.

There are other opportunities out there and I'm confident that something will work out. I keep telling myself that it isn't so much about me not performing well in the interviews as much as being compared to the interviewees, who may have more experience or expertise in a specific area than I do. It seems that there are a lot of people in similar situations to mine; they've been out of the education field for a while and are now trying to get back into it because they've lost their other jobs or their family needs the additional income. School districts, on the other hand, aren't adding any positions and are filling any openings with people already in the district and cutting those additional jobs.

I'm hopeful that things will work out, hopefully sooner rather than later. But the past three and a half months spent on this job search seem to be dragging on and on into eternity. And it becomes harder and harder to stay optimistic.


Emalily said...

Wishing you the best of luck and I know the job that is meant for you will come. I know my district (Jennings) isn't hiring anyone right now, but if you are looking for summer work they have summer school positions open (M-F 8-2 for the second week of June-first week of July)

C said...

you have prepared a looooong time to acheive what you have, V... and the right position for you is coming, and it will be more than you thought it could be. i just KNOW it. so just smile when you dont get these here jobs you applied for... thats because they arent the right one for you. God has hid hand on yourlife. it wont be long, now.


rosemary said...

Good thoughts coming your way....have you tried private schools? I know the pay is not the best there, but just maybe.....when is the wedding?

Amandarama said...

Hang in there; lots of schools wait until the last minute to schedule interviews. You may find that things will pick up as it gets closer to the new school year (although the waiting sucks :/). Also, you might want to consider registering with whichever service your local districts use for substitutes (we use Kelly Educational Services, before that we used OPIS). Sometimes it's easier to get an in with a school if they know you from subbing or tutoring. Good luck!

beana said...

Be patient Em.. something will come your way.

Pay check said...

thanks for you article
this is a useful info

Dave Morris said...

Just a matter of time and patience. You have plenty of both!

pay check said...

thanks i will use my pay check all over and over

Ari said...

If searching for a teaching job sucks, searching for a teaching job sucks doubly. Best of luck!