Teachers Taking Action #001: What Staffroom Assumes About You


Happy Saturday to you and 3675 motivated Teachers Taking Action in our community.

Here's one short tip on how to grow your network and land your dream job.

Today's issue takes about 2 minutes to read.



There are only 3 simple steps to landing your dream job. Even though it might be simple, it is YOU that needs to make the commitment to learning - and doing - for it to lead to a successful outcome.

We've based our career training on the assumption that you meet the following 4 aspects of Adult Learner Theory (Knowles, 1984:12). 

Andragogy: Adult Learner Theory

5 Assumptions of Adult Learners 


As a person matures their self-concept moves from one of being a dependent personality toward one of being a self-disciplined human being.


As a person matures they accumulate a growing reservoir of experience that becomes an increasing resource for learning.


As a person matures their readiness to...

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How to find your dream job at an International School

The competition to teach at international schools is fierce. Here we help you to land your ultimate teaching role and dream job at an international school.

Figure out what your dream job looks like

Not sure where you want to live? What kind of school you want to teach in? Download our Proactive Long Term Vision Blueprint from our website here and start getting crystal clear on what kind of life you want to build.

Tap into your networks

Don’t have a network? Get connected on LinkedIn, and each day aim to make 3-5 new contacts. Focus on making connections at schools that you’d like to work in so you can start building those relationships.

Reach out

Get in touch! Let people know that you’re on the lookout for a great new role and tell them how committed you are to finding your new dream job. We all know that who you know can make the difference.

Build your profile

It sounds cheesy, but connections are built on shared interests. Spend some time working out who you are...

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The Importance of a Cover Letter

Your cover letter is key to making a first impression that counts. Here, we learn how to write cover letters with cut-through, helping you to land your dream job.

Have you fallen into the trap of cutting and pasting a cover letter, changing the name only? This could be why you’re not getting an interview. It’s not enough to send a generic letter. Principals are looking for applicants who have read the school values and mission, and whose cover letter matches these core drivers.

While you’re at it, hook them with a personalised story of a time you triumphed in the workplace. If you can capture and reflect some of those school values, even better.

In fact, those keywords are crucial to getting attention. Throughout the job description the recruiter will litter key words and phrases, that not only give you clues about what they’re looking for, but also help them to find you. Using these keywords in your application will tick more of the boxes in the Applicant...

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#staffroom7 - 7 things you can do to get MORE interviews and job offers!

1. Every day, reach out and aim to make at least 3-5 new connections on LinkedIn at schools that you are interested in working in. Find out how here: https://bit.ly/2TDdzvn

2. Start building a personal brand on LinkedIn. It doesn't have to be related to teaching or your subject specialty - focus on something that brings you joy (because then it won't feel like work). Find out how here: https://bit.ly/3woEvw3

3. Level up your skills with a free online course - check out this list https://bit.ly/2V9DATa

4. Take a new photo for LinkedIn, and record a 30 sec intro to upload into your cover. Find out how here: https://bit.ly/3wlYE5P

5. Commit to a daily practice of self care (even 15 min is ok) - yoga, walking, meditation to keep your stress levels down. We love Insight Timer: https://bit.ly/3xoUEmB

6. Message your current connections on LinkedIn and let them know that you are actively searching for roles and to let you know if they hear of anything in your subject...

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Teacher Career Tip: Install Grammarly on your computer

Grammarly is a free tool to help you improve your writing. If you are a Non-Native English Speaker, this is SUPER important (but it is STILL important if English is your native language). A spelling or grammar mistake in your resume could land it straight in the bin. Download Grammarly here and say goodbye to spelling and grammar mistakes!

According to the career website The Ladders:

"Mistake #1: Obvious spelling or grammar errors

Spelling and grammar errors are the best way to encourage the hiring manager to ditch your resume outright.

Remember, your resume should put your best foot forward. Your absolute best work. If you overlook spelling and grammar errors on something as important as a resume, then what assurance do they have that you’ll add value as an employee?

Pro tip: This includes more than just spelling words correctly. It’s also about using the correct word (ie: there vs. their, etc) and using commas and periods properly. Yes, most recruiters and hiring managers...

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Free ATS resume template for teachers.

Since there was such an amazing response to my article on ATS teacher resumes and how it could affect your job search, I made a FREE template for you!

You can download your copy in our Store under FREE STUFF.

Make sure that your resume does not extend longer than 2 pages, use a standard font like Ariel and no more than TWO colours.

With regard to photos - the industry standard has updated recently since the #blacklivesmatter movement has come to the forefront around the world. Many recruiters have pledged to not include photos on resumes due to this being seen to support discriminatory hiring practices against #bipoc teachers within schools. At Staffroom we support equity in hiring practices, though be aware that many schools still expect to see a photo. We prefer to be the change we wish to see in the world and recommend that teachers be hired on their credentials, rather than their skin colour or ethnicity. 

I really hope this helps you improve your resume so that you...

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Make sure your resume is ATS compliant.

Many of the teachers that we speak to have absolutely never heard of something called ATS, (and that's ok because I am going to tell you all about it right now!).

ATS stands for Applicant Tracking Software/ System and it is used by some schools (not all) to manage their recruiting and HR processes.

If you think that you will just email off your resume in response to the job ad, and the HR person or hiring manager at the school will review it as soon as they see the email in the inbox you are mistaken.

A LOT of the larger schools and those with QA and HR processes in are using an ATS before the HR person or hiring manager even looks at your resume. It provides recruiting tools and other functions. These systems sort thousands of resumes.

If you think that schools don't get that many applications, you are mistaken. I know of a school in South East Asia that advertised a teaching role and received over 3000 applications. For a SINGLE job ad.

Schools use an ATS because it helps them...

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6 soft skills that teachers need to talk about in their interview.

LinkedIn (2020) have just released their latest report and it outlines loads of quality information, much of it relevant to teachers.

Teachers all over the world are finding it challenging at the moment to land their next contract. Offers are being rescinded, schools are juggling positions and reconsidering their hiring needs.

Teachers need to be fully aware of what skills schools are looking for so they have the best chance of being successful in their interview.

As we teach students, the best way to ACE your exam (or interview in this case), is to BE PREPARED.

Here are 6 soft skills that you need to have (and be able to talk about HOW you have demonstrated this at your school):

  1. Adaptability

  2. Culture Add

  3. Collaboration

  4. Leadership

  5. Growth Potential

  6. Prioritisation

If you have an interview looming then take a moment to sit down and think deeply about these soft skills.

Make a cup of tea, find a quiet place (away from kids, the dog, the craziness! lol) and grab a notebook...

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Teacher job interview soft skill: Adaptability.

Teachers all over the world have just proved their adaptability to absolutely EVERYONE as we have been thrown in the deep end with the COVID-19 pandemic and have been forced to adapt to online learning.

LinkedIn (2020) reported "Adaptability is essential for thriving in a rapidly changing work environment.

Given that 54% of employees may require significant re-skilling or up-skilling over the next few years to keep pace with new technology and evolving business needs, adaptability is essential.

Employees who are adaptable are more likely to achieve better outcomes as priorities shift or setbacks occur, since they're already comfortable making strategic adjustments."

Adaptability is a great soft skill that every single teacher can now CONFIDENTLY talk about in their next job interview.

You've proved that you are adaptable.


Ready to deal with unexpected challenges.

When you have a minute, grab a notepad and pen and find a quiet place (lock yourself in the bathroom if you...

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How teachers can improve their LinkedIn profile.

I've just come off another coaching call with a teacher who is ready to begin her search for a new role. To give herself a competitive edge, she wants to improve her LinkedIn profile.

We talked through some things specific to her skills and experience and also some general tips which I though you might find useful as well!

Below you can find some points which you can easily action:

  • use the space for a header pic

  • have a nice, natural profile pic (don't use a passport photo) and SMILE

  • use your headline to describe yourself and add a bit of personality

  • in your headline to be clear about what you are looking for. Why beat around the bush? You have nothing to lose if you are looking for a new role

  • expand your ABOUT info to talk more about what makes YOU amazing - every teacher talks about their passion for teaching and learning which is obvious

  • recruiters and schools already know the tasks you do in a particular role, instead of talking about the tasks, talk about KEY...

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