How to Research Your Future School (School Research Teacher Interview)

How to Research Your Future School (to find a good fit teaching job)

So you have now figured out what your values are as a teacher (haven’t done that yet? check out this blog post here on how to discover those). Now, how do we dig through a school and school district’s website to see if their values align with ours?

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Head to the District Website

When you go to a school district’s website, you want to head to a few different spots.

First, check out their Departments and Programs (this might be named something a tad bit different, but you are looking for a list of school departments and initiatives). This will not only tell you what the school is working on, but you can see how frequently they have updated their website on these particular topics. Maybe they updated their technology page in 2021, but haven’t updated their special education resources page since 2017. That is an important thing to notice.

The next thing I want you to find is the mission statement and/or the district’s values- these can be surprisingly telling.

Visit the School Specific Website

After you take a scroll through the mission statement, head to the Schools page. Take a look at all of the different schools they have, how big the district is, etc. Even if I am only applying to a few schools in a district, I always check out all of the websites. It helps me see if there is consistency between websites, programs, resources, etc.

Dig through the school website. See how often things are updated. What resources are listed? How are they trying to engage with their families and the community? How staffed is each grade level versus how many students are there? What does the Principal’s Message say? Do the Principal’s values align with yours?

You can truly discover SO much on a school website, and it is a great starting place for deciding where to apply AND preparing for your interview.

Check for Social Media Channels

Does the school or district you’re researching have any social media? This can also be a very insightful tool to learn about school priorities, how the school engages with families, how technology is integrated into classrooms, and so much more. Check Twitter and Facebook as promising first options!

Why should we research?

You deserve to work at a school that is a good fit for you. A good fit school is going to be one where you feel valued, respected, and your ideals align with those of the school. Researching can help you get started figuring out which schools might be a good fit for you, and what types of questions to ask at an interview to ensure it truly is a good fit.

Second, it is very impressive when you walk in to an interview and you know your stuff. If you can reference things you saw on the website, mission statements and values, initiatives the school is taking, etc. it will definitely give you a leg up in your interview.

Related articles: Ultimate list of elementary teacher interview questions , The importance of researching a school district before responding to interview questions, Rock your demo lesson at your teaching interview

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