Becoming a teacher is an honourable profession but it can often be difficult to secure employment in Canada with many eligible applicants competing for open positions and retired teachers being still eligible to fill vacancies. It is crucial to do whatever possible to make yourself competitive and an attractive candidate to school administrators when pursuing a career in teaching.
Below are steps you can take while you are in teacher training or if you have recently graduated to put yourself in a great position to be offered full-time employment.
1. Make connections
While work experience and accomplishments have proven to be enough to gain employment, sometimes it is about the connections that you have and are able to make. While searching for employment, make connections with established teachers. Keep in touch with them to receive information about open positions and as the relationship progresses, give them your resume as they will know who to give it to.
Visit with human resources departments at different school boards to inquire about different positions. Ask to submit your resume for vacancies and upcoming positions. Returning periodically will give them the opportunity to get to know you and demonstrate your commitment to working for them.
2. Job shadow and substitute
While you are participating in the Ontario teacher training program, you will be given the privilege to complete a placement in a classroom. This will provide you with the opportunity to gain hands-on experience and demonstrate your skills that will assist you in becoming a successful teacher. Consider job shadowing even after you complete your placement. This will show your ongoing commitment to learning the inner workings of a classroom and advancing your skills.
Before someone gets hired as a full-time teacher it is common to be placed on a substitute list to fill days when the regular teacher is absent. Do not pass up any occasions to teach while on the substitute because this gives you the opportunity to gain experience in different grades and possibly teach a variety of subjects.
3. Never stop learning
You may have successfully completed teacher’s college but you want to remain competitive in a field with a large pool of qualified applicants. Therefore, it would be beneficial for you to keep advancing your education even if it is through part-time courses or online. If you are seeking a position in an elementary school, being well-versed on various subjects will put you in a better position to meet the requirements and demonstrate your versatility.
If you aim to be a high school teacher, being trained in different subject will allow you to be an attractive candidate for any subject they need someone to teach. After securing employment as a full-time teacher you will be required to attend training sessions on occasion. Completing courses between teacher’s college and obtaining employment will demonstrate your ability to complete courses as necessary.
4. Take related positions
You may be able to secure full-time employment as a teacher immediately following graduation, but the truth is it may take some time. As mentioned previously, qualified teachers are often put on substitute teacher lists to fill short-term vacancies. While assuming positions through this list, search for jobs such as tutoring, training, and adjunct positions.
Doing this will allow you to gain valuable experience as a substitute teacher while simultaneously becoming familiar with other areas related to education. These other positions can be added to your resume and show school administrators that you are versatile and committed to establishing yourself as an educator. Utilize internet job boards in your search and use filters to target only the jobs matched to your work experience and background.