A reader recently asked, "If I don't have actual experience in working as a guidance counselor, but I have experience in it within my college career, would that be considered experience?" This question brings up the perplexing dilemma first time professional job seekers face when they apply for entry-level positions where employers prefer candidates with "experience." Naturally, the job seeker asks, "How can I gain experience if employers only want candidates with experience?" How employers determine who is "experienced" may vary according to the employer. Most of the time, employers will define experience as teaching or counseling employment, not student ...


The teacher job market for the 2011-12 academic year is the toughest one I have seen during my 32 years in education. Even schools that need teachers may not have the funds to hire them. I still have hope that state governments will eventually provide the funds for school districts to hire the teachers needed to educate students from grades K through 12. But that funding may not come this year or even next year. If your passion is to teach, keep this long-term goal in mind as you navigate a short-term job market with few opportunities for the coming ...


About this time every year, I start to see a few educators who are very worried about their employment prospects for the next academic year. Inevitably, the conversation includes a question about whether it is time to panic if one has not secured a position for the fall. The answer is "no." Most states are wrestling with budget problems. Public PK-12 education in my state (Kansas) has taken quite a hit in the budget for the upcoming fiscal year, with a sizable decrease in per-student state funding to districts. Things are going to be tough for a while, it appears, ...


How are you keeping up with what is going on in your job search - and in the world? Record-keeping in your job search is important, but it is also vital, in my opinion as an educator, to keep up with what's going on in education and in the world. This may seem an odd topic for an education job seeker blog, but I think it goes directly to a higher purpose and to your excellence as an educator. I work with college students every day, and it is a question I ask or want to ask on a regular ...


A reader recently submitted a question regarding re-entering the classroom after a stint as an administrator and asked for feedback on her résumé, as she was having limited success in being selected for interviews. Diana Sanchez wrote an entry for this blog in December called "The 'Over-Educated' Myth?" in which she addressed some of the questions surrounding advanced degrees for teachers. I'll give my thoughts as a career services professional on a re-entry résumé, but I would encourage school HR or hiring officials to provide their (more relevant) thoughts as well. First, begin your résumé with a summary of the ...


As I have worked with education job seekers over the years, I have often been asked by candidates why they are not getting interviews or offers. There are lots of reasons why one may not be generating interest, and you have read many good ideas on this blog for increasing your attractiveness to potential employers. Commonly, however, candidates eventually get around to this: Am I not getting interviews (or offers) because I am new and don't have much experience? Or: Am I not getting interviews because I have a lot of experience (and they will have to pay me too ...


Question from a reader: "What are the top K-12-related part-time, flexible-schedule, and work-from-home job opportunities teachers can explore to stay current in their careers while staying home with children?" The response to your question may be helpful to new teacher candidates trying to gain experience related to the K-12 realm, as well as experienced teachers seeking to stay current while staying home with children. Below is a list of potential options for K-12 related part-time, flexible schedule and work-from-home job opportunities, which was developed with input from members of the Illinois Association for Employment in Education (IAEE) and the American ...


Several teacher candidates have asked me, "How can I stand out from the hundreds of other candidates?" "Should I try brightly-colored resumé paper or different-colored clothing?" Of course, these ideas may make you stand out in the wrong way! To consider the factors that help you 'stand out' as a teacher candidate, keep in mind the missing letter E that has been passed over in the traditional A,B,C,D,F grading scale. You will stand out through your E's - Endorsements/Education, Experience, connection to Employers, Extended Effort, Expertise, and through your Evidence/Examples. Endorsements /additional Education - ...


Question from a reader: With school budgets tight across the country, what are specific things that recently laid-off teachers can do to better their chances of getting one of the few jobs available? Dear reader, Several school district human resources administrators who are affiliated with the American Association for Employment in Education (AAEE) have offered responses to your question. Here is a summary of their responses: A recently laid-off teacher would need to do many of the same job search tasks as a first-time job seeker. Do your homework - process matters Research the job openings, but as a part ...


Question from a reader: "Is an advanced degree (MA or PhD) a helpful asset or actually a disadvantage when it comes to keeping one's teaching job or getting hired in today's tough market (because administrators and districts have to pay those with advanced degrees more money)? In other words, is it worth the extra time, effort and money to get an advanced degree or will this only hurt teachers in the end?" Dear reader, You raise a good question! As you consider an advanced degree, please keep in mind the fact that schools and school districts can vary widely according ...


The opinions expressed in Career Corner are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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