Tuesday, June 26, 2012


A couple weeks ago, I had my first phone interview (ever) for a charter school in Los Angeles. I knew it went poorly, but I'd be a liar if I said I wasn't still hopeful. They told me to call back if I didn't hear from them in two weeks. Yesterday was the two week mark so I decided to give them a ring today. The phone operator asked for my email address and said I would receive an email with their decision shortly. Not to my surprise, I wasn't offered a position. Everything is a learning experience. So what did I learn from this experience?

If there's any advice I can offer, it is not to underestimate the limitations of a phone interview. I completely overlooked the fact that I wouldn't be able to rely on body language and other signals like facial expressions to help guide my interview answers. I had my cheat sheet in front of me the whole time, and although it was a good crutch, nothing prepared me for the lack of mental support from not being able to rely on body and facial cues. Next time, I won't take this for granted.

I had also talked to my cooperating teacher a day or so right after my interview. I explained to her that the interview panel literally spent ten minutes of my fifteen minute interview asking me the same question, reworded in different ways. (The question was something to the effect of how would you know your students mastered a learning objective, which I interpreted as more or less asking about assessment). I told my CT how frustrated this made me feel because the heart of my answer wasn't going to change and it gave me the sense that they were looking for a certain answer, their answer. My CT gave me some great food for thought. She told me I was no sheep. I answered the question in a way that aligned with my beliefs and teaching philosophy. If my answer wasn't their answer than I probably wasn't a good fit for that school to begin with. At first, I struggled with this. I must have screwed something up... Maybe I wasn't as prepared as I thought I was? I started to doubt my own abilities, but the more I thought about it, the more my CT was right. In a time where teaching jobs are scarce I recognize that beggars can't be choosers, but don't ever sell yourself out for a job. Remember to be you and surely, the right job will come.


  1. haha yee, like that

  2. Hopefully you like the lesson learned, not the fact that I didn't get the job! :)