Yes, there are many teaching jobs in India. But very few of them check all the important boxes.
This “scarcity” and high competition make it difficult for teachers to land their dream teaching job.
So, whether you’re just starting your career as a teacher or have extensive experience, finding a great job that’s rewarding and fulfilling is going to be a challenge.
However, there are several things you can do on your end to be better qualified and solidly positioned for the teaching job you’re eyeing.
Here are seven tips:
1. Shortlist the right schools
All that glitters is not gold. And this is one of the things you must remember when shortlisting the private schools where you would want to teach.
In addition to how the school “looks”, there are many other factors that you must consider in the process. Meaning, don’t get carried away with the infrastructural appeal; look beyond it.
Gauge the reputation of the schools. How credible is it? How do the parents perceive it? What kind of news has it been in?
What is the growth rate of the school? What kind of target audience does it primarily target? What kind of extracurricular activities does it promote? What is its board, or what kind of curriculum does it have? How are the teachers there, what’s their experience and are they happy there?
Having answers to such questions will provide you with much more insight into which schools are a better fit for you.
So, take your time to audit and analyze all the various factors before shortlisting a few schools where you would want to teach.
2. Get a teacher training degree
Just having a basic level of qualifications isn’t sufficient; not today when there’s so much competition for teachers’ jobs.
So, look for good teacher training education programs that offer recognized certifications. Acquire newer teacher training skills; brush up your existing skills to improve your teaching delivery.
There are many teacher training benefits. It adds more value to your CV, helping you stand out from the crowd. It improves your teaching skills, which aids your journey as a teacher. It opens up more (and better paying) opportunities.
So, get your teacher training degree or certificate and steer your career to newer heights.
Look for a fitting certification program, fill the teacher training application, and level up your qualifications.
3. Gain more teaching experience
Teachers with more experience are automatically positioned for better pay and more opportunities.
Schools look for staff members who have extensive hands-on experience, which demonstrates the latter’s capabilities.
Of course, this doesn’t mean the teachers just starting their careers have the disadvantage. The “teaching experience” here doesn’t have to be the traditional one. You can opt for teaching roles in NGOs and education camps. You can teach students online. You can teach students in your locality (while you pursue your academics before becoming a teacher).
Imagine teaching students for TOEFL and those students ace the test. Now imagine you mentioning this in the cover letter when applying for an English teaching job. Does that not give you the competitive advantage and improve your chances of getting that job?
So, in whatever way or form, try to accumulate more teaching experience.
4. Start networking
This is one of the most underrated tips.
Don’t undermine the importance and power of having a strong network.
From helping you discover better job opportunities to providing referrals and recommendations for you, people in your circle can help you in many ways.
So, do network more. Be active on social media platforms, especially on LinkedIn. Attend networking events where you can meet more teachers and other influential individuals.
5. Become a subject expert
The best schools want the best teachers. So, just being “okay” or “good” as a teacher isn’t sufficient. You need to be the best.
This requires you to constantly upgrade your knowledge in the subject you specialize in.
Keep on learning and improving your knowledge of the subject.
Even if you’re going to teach just the middle school students, acquire new knowledge and enhance your expertise that’s beyond the job requirement.
Being a subject expert with an extensive understanding of different aspects of that subject (as well as other related curricula) assures to bring you more career opportunities.
6. “Properly” apply for the job
When you’re applying for your dream teaching job, taking a reluctant approach (which is the case with many applicants) is a bad idea.
For one, read the requirements of the job thoroughly.
Second, create a better CV that’s appealing to eyes and make your accomplishments/qualifications more visible.
Third, even if the cover letter isn’t mandatory, make sure to send it along with the CV. Now writing an effective cover letter is a challenge in itself. If you don’t have experience writing cover letters, spend some time learning about it or you can simply hire an expert to do this for you. Ideally, you want to create a cover letter that’s personalized to the job listing; meaning, it should highlight relevant qualifications/experience and be in sync with what the role wants from a teacher.
In all, be more dedicated and spend more time, energy, and attention when applying for the job. Avoid basic mistakes.
7. Prepare for the interview
This is possibly the last step between you and your dream teaching job. Prepare for it thoroughly.
Take help from your friends or family members to have mock interviews before the real one.
Be perceptive of your body language, as well as your choice of words. There are many great articles and videos online that mention the dos and don’ts of job interviews. Spend some time with them.
Stay prepared for some of the common questions like “tell us something about you”, “what are your career goals”, “why do you want to teach in our school”, “what are some skills or qualities in you that will be helpful to students”, and more.
Have satisfying answers to such highly expected questions.
Yes, as mentioned, the competition for teaching positions at private schools is high. Moreover, good, high-paying opportunities for teachers are few.
But if you're well-prepared, you can beat that competition and grab the best opportunities.
The above-mentioned tips for teachers will help you on the way to landing your dream teaching job.
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