Teachers typically relate with a variety of stakeholders in the educational system. Along with training children or young people, they usually interact with colleagues, administrators, parents, school board representatives and other community members. Asking the right questions in a teaching interview gives you insight into what a teaching position would entail in a particular school district. When presented the right way, you can also work in additional selling points about yourself with your questions.
Classroom discipline is an important topic in education, and school districts often have their own philosophies. Using the Best Job Interview site suggested question "I am familiar with a number of approaches to classroom discipline. What is the school perspective on discipline?" helps you learn whether your personal approach aligns with the employer's. Additionally, asking the question as indicated allows you to show your familiarity with various approaches and your potential flexibility to alternative methods.
Nancy Davies, a global career management professional specializing in work with educators, suggests the question "I have been instrumental in developing new programs in previous positions I have held. Will the school be implementing any new programs this year or require input to develop programs already in place?" Again, you state your willingness to get involved in program improvements and your question allows the interviewer to share insights on any major changes pending.
Another Best Job Interview site recommended question states "I appreciate having an opportunity to contribute my input. How often are staff meetings held?" The initial statement demonstrates your willingness to actively participate as part of the educational team. The second part leads to a potentially informative response from the interviewer. You will get a sense of whether staff meetings are routine and whether teamwork, trust and collaboration are the norm in the school. If sharing ideas as part of a team is important to you, a closed and noninteractive staff environment is not a good fit.
Davies suggests "Is there a mentor teacher program available?" as a question for new teachers to ask in an interview. This demonstrates your desire to grow and teach to your maximum potential. Employers usually appreciate an applicant who not only possess appropriate skills but desires to grow. The response should give you an indication of what support systems and career growth opportunities are in place. Along with specific mentoring program mentions, the interviewer might offer insight into other training and development opportunities.
- woman and a teacher at seminar image by Dmitry Goygel-Sokol from Fotolia.com