International Schools Review
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Cover letter

Cover letter

Postby jennifergo » Mon Oct 09, 2017 4:18 pm

I’m writing my cover letter/bio and trying to decide how much to share. My son and daughter have taught in Japan for 6 years and they are part of my inspiration. I want employers to know that I understand through them the difficulties I might encounter. However, I’m concerned that they will think I only want to live near them, which isn’t true. I’m open to many different areas. I have 32 years experience and teach all the AP history courses. Any advice to a newbie will be appreciated!
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Response

Postby PsyGuy » Mon Oct 09, 2017 8:39 pm

Leave it out. First, you cant convince a recruiter or leadership that your vicarious experience through your children means anything or has any value, mainly because it doesnt. You understand nothing.
Second, cover letters arent read, not until the short list. A recruiter or leadership will skim it before the interview maybe but basically they are worthless. They are all self ingratiating "Im awesome" fluff pieces.
Third, it has no value and possibility could be seen as a negative, there will be recruiters and leadership who will assume you are goal is solely to live near your children, and you really cant convince them otherwise, they will believe what they will. Why take the risk, it adds no value, and possibly could be viewed as a detriment.
Save the anecdote about your children living in Japan for the interview where you can briefly give it context.
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Re: Cover letter

Postby jennifergo » Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:29 pm

Thanks for your input. If the cover letter is useless, should we just not have one?
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Re: Cover letter

Postby wrldtrvlr123 » Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:39 pm

jennifergo wrote:
> Thanks for your input. If the cover letter is useless, should we just not
> have one?
================
It's more like one of those things that doesn't matter, unless you don't have one. I don't quite agree over how useless they are, but I do think we probably do over-think and agonize over them to some extant. In some small amount of cases a good cover letter could get someone's attention and/or a bad one could turn someone off. In most other cases it's probably a non-factor.
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Re: Cover letter

Postby jennifergo » Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:17 pm

Thank you. I will write the obligatory letter, but not worry over much. :)
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Reply

Postby PsyGuy » Tue Oct 17, 2017 3:30 am

@jennifergo

No, you need the cover intro letter, it will be read briefly when getting to the short list of interviewed candidates. Understand though that it can take several forms. The rule is ALWAYS follow the instructions in the vacancy, but if you are applying through email or online the body of your message is your cover letter. I would concur with @WT123 though you have to include something as not including one is too much of a risk and provides you no value while probably being a detriment. Its too easy to take notice of you not including some form of cover/intro letter than it is to include a generic cover/intro letter.
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Re: Cover letter

Postby shadowjack » Wed Oct 18, 2017 5:40 am

Or, as in the case of a guy I know, it may be why you got the interview. Write a cover letter. Never ever think it is pro forma. That's what sets people who don't get their coveted position apart from those who do. Attention to detail (among other things, of course).
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Reply

Postby PsyGuy » Wed Oct 18, 2017 9:57 am

@SJ

Thats survivor bias. Its the same bias to recommend buying lottery tickets because someone won the lottery. We dont even know if its true in your case, it could be the cover letter it could be any one of any other factors. It also doesnt account for the many applicants who wrote great cover letters who didnt get the job.
Yes, cover letters are a requirement (always follow the instructions in the vacancy) but fretting or angsting over a line is a waste of time and resources.

Cover letters generally tend to be very indistinct from one another an introduction part that contains demographic and contact identifiers. A body that states the IT is awesome and a closing that thanks the IS for being awesome. All cover letters can be summed up as follows: Im awesome, your awesome, wed be awesome working together, here is how to contact me.
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