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Networking for Teachers: 7 People and Places to Turn To

Teachers' Network

Volunteer and connect with other teachers you know before you chart your next career move. 

Networking for teachers is the best way to find a job in the competitive world of teaching. Here are some tried and true ways networking can help you nail down the teaching position of your dreams.

Your Professors

Almost all your professors were, or still are, teachers or administrators in a school district, which means they are great for networking. I work as an adjunct professor in the Graduate School of Education at a local college, and several of my students have contacted me to inquire about jobs in my district. Kelly was in my graduate school class about seven years ago; she now teaches biology at the high school where I work. Alesia, another one of my students, started off as a paraprofessional in my district, and this year, she has her own third-grade classroom. There's a good chance that your professors have connections across the country and are great networking sources, too.

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Your Alma Mater

There's nothing that pleases me more than seeing the students I once taught in high school coming back to teach in our district. These former students are uniquely qualified to understand the issues at our school, and they're better able to relate to our students.

Prospective teachers should check their former school's website for job positions, and reach out to former teachers, principals, and vice principals.

The School Where You Student-Taught

Utilizing connections from student teaching is how I secured my current teaching position nearly 23 years ago. I worked well with my mentor-teacher, Ms. DiMasi, who was a huge help in preparing me to be a teacher, and I worked hard to be an effective and competent teacher in the classroom. A year later, when an English language arts teaching position opened up, I was hired, and I've been teaching at that high school ever since.

Private Schools

Angela, one of my recent graduate school students, was anxious to begin teaching, but she didn't have her certification yet. She applied to teach at a small Catholic school near her home and got the job. Although the salary was small, Angela will gain valuable teaching experience, and she will build her resume. When she does earn her certification, that practical work experience will not only help her get a job, it will help her keep it.

Alternative Schools

Before I became a public school teacher, I taught at an alternative school for students who had dropped out of high school. I helped students earn their general education diploma, and I had a significant amount of autonomy in my classroom. The students I worked with faced a great deal of adversity in their lives, and there were often behavioral challenges. When I got a job in a public high school a year later, my alternative-school experience was invaluable. I felt like I was ready for anything, and, essentially, I was.

Volunteering

This is a great way to gain experience and bulk up your resume. My friend, Victoria, knew English language arts teaching positions were hard to come by, so she decided to volunteer and teach English in Costa Rica for a year. Other teachers I know have volunteered as paraprofessionals and teaching assistants.

Professional Organizations

Professional organizations provide a fertile ground for networking for teachers, especially through social media. I've met many educators through my membership in the National Council of Teachers of English, Association of Supervision and Curriculum Development, and The College Board. The people you meet through these organizations can provide leads on jobs and connect you to administrators seeking teachers.

Networking for teachers is just as important as it is in other professions. So when you're ready for a teaching position, these simple steps can help.

   
Beyond the
classroom
   
Professional
development
   
Teaching
moments
   
Classroom
innovation