Contacting Teachers Pensions, to ensure they have your correct details or ask a question about contributions and benefits by @shenalewington

Name: Shena Lewington
Twitter name: @shenalewington
Sector: Primary, Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable):
Position: Retired primary and middle-school teacher
What is your advice about? Contacting Teachers Pensions, to ensure they have your correct details or ask a question about contributions and benefits

  1. The easiest way to contact Teachers Pensions is probably to log into your TP account, and use the personal online message facility. If you do not already have an account, (which, as a teacher, you should have, as you need it to access your annual P60) you will need to register, so visit:
  2. Telephone 0345 6066166 (8.30am – 6pm Monday to Friday) but good luck in getting through!
    You’ll need the following details to hand:
    Name, date of birth, National Insurance number and Teachers’ Pensions reference number
  3. Twitter: @TPScheme or Facebook: teachers.pensions
  4. Email – try:
  5. Write to: Teachers’ Pensions
    11b Lingfield Point, Darlington DL1 1AX

Writing a job application by @shinpad1

Name: Sinead
Twitter name: @shinpad1
Sector: Primary
Subject taught (if applicable):
Position: Deputy and class teacher
What is your advice about? Writing a job application

  1. Write your application tailored to the school you’re applying to. Don’t use the same unchanged personal statement for every job. It’s unimpressive and a bit insulting.
  2. Give real examples of what you’ve done in your classroom(s) on training. It shouldn’t sound like you’ve once read a book about teaching; your aim is to give genuine examples.
  3. It is good to have ambitious aims for your 1st job so by all means describe inspiring children, but also discuss real progress yr pupils have made & things you’ve taught them
  4. Paying attention to the job spec is a bit like reading exam questions carefully. Tailor your application to the things the school want; otherwise you’ll lose marks (really).
  5. Sound like you are looking forward to becoming a real teacher because, honestly, if you can’t muster the energy to write a good application, you don’t have the energy to teach

Settling in to a new school by @missjavery

Name: Jennifer Avery
Twitter name: @missjavery
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): English
Position: NQT
What is your advice about? Settling in to a new school

  1. Get to know your department – they are the ones who will help you out when you really need it.
  2. Find out where to access any shared resources, and how to add to it. Most departments will plan together to create a generic scheme of work to work off.
  3. Get to know the support staff. Although not a complete list: TAs, Learning Mentors, IT Support, Caretakers, Cover, Timetabling, Cleaners. They will know more than you!
  4. Know the behaviour policy inside out. There is nothing worse than not being clear on expectations or where (or who!) to escalate the issue to.
  5. Know what is expected of you. Do most teachers run extracurricular activities? How often should you mark books?

Tips for Longevity in the Profession by @amuseED

Name: Allison Fairey
Twitter name: @amuseED
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Art +RE
Position: Teacher
What is your advice about? Tips for Longevity in the Profession

  1. Right from the start make sure teaching is indeed the gig for you. You should have gained insights into this when you began working in schools as a pre-service teacher.
  2. Be strict with yourself. Make sure you plan downtime, leisure and family time. Don’t allow workload or the job to rule you or upset that balance.
  3. Seek out ways to fuel your passion for your subject & to determine or test your success as an educator. If you are truly successful you will be satisfied & happy.
  4. Challenge yourself. Continually improve your knowlege. Experiment with what you learn through the reading of research & conversations with knowledgable colleagues & experts.
  5. Be positive & connect with colleagues who are enthusiastic. Feed off & into the energy that is created in these relationships as they will sustain you as you gain experience.

Interview preparation by @molin_bryan

Name: Bryan Molin
Twitter name: @molin_bryan
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): Maths
Position: Assistant Headteacher
What is your advice about? Interview preparation

  1. Go through the job spec very carefully to make sure you are absolutely clear about the requirements of the job. Reflect on how you meet each criteria
  2. Make sure you have researched the school, its ethos, latest OFSTED and Google the SLT at the school. Modern technology gives you the opportunity to be fully prepared.
  3. Make sure you have read up a little on educational theory. Twitter is a good starting point.
  4. Make sure communication with the school is positive, polite and thorough. You may wish to visit the school before. Good to get intel from key staff and students.
  5. Prepare for the questions with a trusted professional. I generally script answers. Think about concrete examples- what have you done, what impact and how it was evaluated.

Landing that dream teaching job by @MartinGSaunders

Name: Martin Saunders
Twitter name: @MartinGSaunders
Sector: Primary
Subject taught (if applicable):
Position: Chair of Governors
What is your advice about? Landing that dream teaching job

  1. Remember that a real person has to read (and score) your application form. Check details, explain gaps in employment and make your personal statement easy to read. Spelling!
  2. The whole recruitment process is scored on various criteria. Make sure at each step you consider and demonstrate what would be important.
  3. Before a demo lesson ask about pupils needs, school behaviour policy and any conventions. Hardly anyone seems to and it always makes a great impression as well as helping you.
  4. In the interview you will be asked about safeguarding. Learn the process by heart, it’s easy but newbies ALWAYS lose dumb points on this.
  5. Don’t be afraid to be yourself. If you don’t fit then you will have made a lucky escape but being genuine and human goes a very long way.

Applications and interviews by @ewenfields

Name: David Jones
Twitter name: @ewenfields
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable):
Position: Head
What is your advice about? Applications and interviews

  1. Do visit your prospective school-If they say, they don’t allow visits in school time-don’t apply! It has to feel right for you and you should tour everywhere.
  2. Don’t rely on set letters-write to the school and give lots of practical learning and teaching examples which show your reflection and potential. Cut the philosophy/SPAG it!
  3. If called for interview, contact school and ask about the needs of the class you are teaching, names, resources available etc. If they won’t or don’t tell you don’t go!
  4. Scrub up and get your best suit on. You aren’t the finished product and good schools look for potential-your powers of reflection about your practice would be key for me.
  5. If at any point you are unsure and feel that the school may not be right for you in terms of NQT support, CPD, workload etc.-WALK AWAY-there will be other jobs. Good luck

Job applications by @janbaker97

Name: Jan Baker
Twitter name: @janbaker97
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): MFL
Position: Curriculum Leader
What is your advice about? Job applications

  1. When you apply for a job match your skills to the job specification and be specific with examples. Don’t assume they will know what you are capable of.
  2. Always use a business font for applications – e.g. Arial. Comic Sans although beloved of teachers just isn’t a good idea.
  3. Make sure you have asked your referees if it’s okay to put their names down for references. They will appreciate the courtesy.
  4. Think about why you want the position and be positive about what the school can offer you and what you can offer them.
  5. Remember to take all your original documentation with you for photocopying and check your spelling/name of the head etc. to make the best impression from the beginning.

Progressions by @nickotkdV

Name: Nick Overton
Twitter name: @nickotkdV
Sector: Primary
Subject taught (if applicable): Primary
Position: Class Teacher
What is your advice about? Progressions

  1. Take your time!! A lot of us will be in teaching for quite some years (30+ years), there is no rush to progress and get up the career ladder. Enjoy your teaching.
  2. Be sure its what you want. Before you apply for any new position make sure it is fully what you want. It is difficult to back out once you have said yes.
  3. Patience. All good things come to those who wait. If you see something unbelievable go for it, apart from that wait and something will come up.
  4. Talk. If you see something that relates to progression and career development ask people want they think of it. Normally senior leaders are more that willing to offer advice.
  5. Enjoy. Teaching should be enjoyed and if the promotion spoils the enjoyment they you might question whether it was worth it.

Getting your first job by @emmakennedy123

Name: Emma Kennedy
Twitter name: @emmakennedy123
Sector: Secondary
Subject taught (if applicable): English
Position: Teacher in charge of Literacy
What is your advice about? Getting your first job

  1. Join an NQT pool for an area you would like to teach in.
  2. Since you only need to do one application form, invest time in writing your statement and get a second opinion from an experienced teacher.
  3. Be aware that a good application will receive many responses and schools will be keen to interview you so you can be selective about which you choose to attend.
  4. Don’t worry if you don’t get the first one. There will be PLENTY more opportunities.
  5. Get your application in early so you can be even more picky and selective about where you work.