Neatly does it

5th July 1996 at 01:00
Have you applied for any teaching jobs this year? If you are a student, did other students on your course seem to get interviews before you?

Do you seem to be the last person to be getting interviews?

Have you only been able to get supply jobs?

Are you wondering why?

When you apply for a teaching post, do you bother to send a letter of applicationexplanationintroduction with your completed application form, or not? You should.

Do you ever write "see CV" anywhere on your application form and not attempt to explain any unusual moves in your CV? You shouldn't.

And why ever do you write with a leaking ballpoint, thick felt tip or a strange colour?

Would you write a letter to a selective school explaining how interested you have become in the special needs of the less able (or vice versa) - and never mention why you think you could be useful to the school you're applying to?

I was on the receiving end of all these things this term when we advertised a post in The TES. It made me acutely aware that any job application form should be filled in fully and clearly - that alone speaks volumes. (Sixth-formers applying to higher education are often advised by their teachers to photocopy their UCAS form and to do a "practice" version. Hint, hint.) An accompanying letter - which should be clearly relevant to the post advertised - can be word processed to make it easy to read.

Am I asking too much?

Am I alone in thinking any teaching job carries responsibility with it?

Do my applicants think professionalism does not matter?

Does no one want this very important job?

I may have to readvertise.

Christine Meade is a head of mathematics in London

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