For those of you who aren’t aware, I got the full-time, continuing contract position at the high school where I’ve been working part-time since January.
When they posted the position, they indicated that there was a Strong Internal Candidate and that the position required that you be Highly Qualified in English (having 24 or more semester hours in English or passing the PLACE Exam in English) and have a Special Education License. The interview was easy; I was asked the exact same questions in November when I interviewed for the part-time position. The four people sitting at the table interviewing me were my references.
The day of my interview, they were interviewing other SPED candidates for a Generalist Position. A Generalist would have a SPED License and could Team Teach with a content area teacher, but could not teach a content area on their own. They would “teach” Resource (Study Hall for SPED students) and provide extra help, manage a case load of IEP students, etc. But they could not teach on their own due to not being Highly Qualified in a content area. There was another SPED teacher interviewing for that position. She worked in the building for the entire year. She was not “competing” with me for a position; she could not teach English. She was the person whose situation prompted me to take a chance on the part-time position. Originally, she was hired for a .4 and when the teacher who I was hired to replace, retired, they offered her .4 of that position (Team Teaching) so that she would qualify for benefits, My thinking was that if they were willing to work to try to get her a “full-time” position (she had a .8 – 1.0 is FULL-TIME), they would most likely be willing to work with me after they got to know me. It was a calculated risk and thankfully, it paid off!
I was offered the position the following day before lunch and I accepted. Unfortunately, the other person was not offered the position. This was for a number of reasons, the most important of which was that she was unwilling to make a 1-year commitment. She just got her Counseling License and wanted to do that (understandable) and the hiring team didn’t want to make her an offer only to have her leave mid-year.
I heard from a member of the hiring committee that there was no discussion about my position at all. They started their discussions by saying, “Robin is our English Teacher. Now what about the other candidates?” It was very nice to hear.
It took a week or two for me to see the Principal; he wasn’t on the hiring team and one of the Assistant Principals offered me the job. When I did see him, I thanked him for the opportunity to work there. He gave me a hug (which was somewhat unexpected – he doesn’t come off as the hugging type) and told me that it was earned. I earned my position there. What a great feeling!
And the best part – I will never have to interview, unless I want to, again! The other SPED English teacher is retiring at the end of the year, which will make me The English Teacher. Kind of nice after all this time.
For the 2012-2013 School Year it looks like I will be teaching English Strategies I and II (Freshmen and Sophomores) and Team Teaching a class (either Spanish or English – it hasn’t been decided yet). I think it is going to be a great year!