questions from a newbie

Post Reply
Cbee78704
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Sep 02, 2012 6:49 pm

questions from a newbie

Post by Cbee78704 »

Do you typically contact current teachers at a school before accepting an offer? When do you do this, if so? And do you use Linked In, Facebook, or do you ask the administrator about suggestions of teachers to contact? What questions do you ask, besides the general "Are you happy there?" type?

At what point do you discuss salary/benefits? Many schools do not have a clear salary scale listed on their website. Is there any room for negotiation, especially if the title includes leadership such as a coordinator position?

shadowjack
Posts: 1900
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 9:49 am

Re: questions from a newbie

Post by shadowjack »

When you get to interview, that's the time to discuss salaries. If you are with Search (and likely ISS) you will see savings potential of the schools prior to application.

If I am interviewing you and your main focus seems to be on benefits and salary, you won't get the job. At the end of the discussion, if you add in a question about pay scale, that's good.

On the flip side - good schools will disclose their payscale in interviews - but not necessarily on their website.

PsyGuy
Posts: 9402
Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:51 am
Location: Northern Europe

Response

Post by PsyGuy »

You can try to contact other ITs at the IS but what are you really going to expect them to say? They cant reply with dishing the bad stuff without risking their jobs and it cant be so bad at the IS they are at otherwise they would pull a runner. The ITs that did leave arent there to contact anymore. That leaves you either getting a tow the line middle of the path evaluation or some cheerleader. If your going to contact other ITs do it once you have an offer.

You discuss salary once your negotiating the contract.
There are to type of salary and comp systems open and closed. Closed systems are private and secret. Open systems are published.
Yes, you can negotiate in a closed system you can haggle as you would for any major purchase or business deal. For open system ISs you need to make a case (justify) that you have valuable factors that are worth step on the salary scale. Most salary scales are based on years of experience and education band. You offer an argument that something you have such as leadership/coordinator experience that is relevant to the appointment as worth increased step or band on that scale, such as you have coordinator experience in your subject/department and the IS doesnt have someone in that role, but its worth some amount of step.

Heliotrope
Posts: 686
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 1:48 am

Re: questions from a newbie

Post by Heliotrope »

Cbee78704 wrote:
> Do you typically contact current teachers at a school before accepting an
> offer? When do you do this, if so? And do you use Linked In, Facebook, or
> do you ask the administrator about suggestions of teachers to contact? What
> questions do you ask, besides the general "Are you happy there?"
> type?

Yes, I always do. I've gotten lots of valuable feedback, and so far, none of it has proven to be far from the truth.
At least twice it made me decide to look elsewhere, and years later when I heard stories from teachers that have taught there it was very clear that I dodged a bullet in both cases.
I usually ask the administrator, but when they only supply me with one or two names to contact, I also use Facebook and LinkedIn. It doesn't mean they will only give you contacts of 'cheerleaders' (more likely they don't want to give you private email addresses of teachers that might not want to be bothered, so they give you the address of a teacher that has agreed to be contacted), but there's always a chance that it's someone who will paint a too rosy picture.

By now, having taught with so many people over the course of my career, I know lots of teachers at lots of schools, who in turn all know other teachers at other schools, so it's very easy nowadays to get the contact details of someone currently working at the schools on my current longlist.
Sometimes it also pays to ask a question on the paid ISR forum, especially if you want to compare two schools, which is always best done by a teachers that has been at both.

I usually ask things about academic integrity, workload, if the school will have your back when parents have a problem with one of your decisions, if the school pays on time, salary scale, the kind of students that attend, leadership issues, and in general what they think is important to know about the school for someone considering working there. That last question usually results in the most interesting information btw.

Illiane_Blues
Posts: 201
Joined: Thu Dec 06, 2018 10:56 pm

Re: questions from a newbie

Post by Illiane_Blues »

Heliotrope wrote:
> By now, having taught with so many people over the course of my career, I know lots
> of teachers at lots of schools, who in turn all know other teachers at other schools,
> so it's very easy nowadays to get the contact details of someone currently working at
> the schools on my current longlist.

Yep I do that too. It def pays to keep in touch with old friends and colleagues. We also let each other use our guest rooms.

A question I always ask in addition to the ones already mentioned is what kinds of explanations admin gives for firing staff.

Heliotrope
Posts: 686
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 1:48 am

Re: questions from a newbie

Post by Heliotrope »

Illiane_Blues wrote:
> A question I always ask in addition to the ones already mentioned is what kinds of
> explanations admin gives for firing staff.

Not a bad question to add, although the reason leadership gives isn't always the actual reason. The actual reason would be more interesting to know (but that might be what you meant), and often staff knows full well what the real story is behind what leadership is communicating to the outside world.

Post Reply