Questions a teacher should ask before joining a new school


It is said that teaching is a calling! To better fulfill a calling is to be armed with all that is required and to be fully armed is to KNOW!

Everyone seeks continuous growth in their career path and a teacher most especially, is not left out. If a school isn’t meeting up to the expectations of the teacher. Then the teacher seeks to fulfil his calling elsewhere. Or if it’s just a new teacher being released into the field. She would also want to work where she expects that her calling as a teacher might be fulfilled.

However, most teachers don’t know what to expect when they get to a new school; it will be wrong to just assume that what the goals of your former school were, would be the same with the new school. Schools generally have a common goal; to train learners. But every establishment has their own unique way of wanting to reach that goal.

So when starting off in a new school; be it as an experienced teacher or an inexperienced one. It would do you a whole lots of good to ask some questions. Some of them could get answered during the course of your interview while you might need further clarity on others. Not exactly sure what to ask? Here’s a few tips:

1.  What sets the school apart from other schools in its surroundings?

To get clear pointers on what exactly the school expects from you. You should learn what serves as their competitive edge. This will help you channel your energy in the right direction, as well as contribute your own quota to keeping the school standard.

You could also chip in ideas you think would be beneficial to the school or how to get to their vision faster. But first you need to know where they are at and where they are headed!

2. What resources or technology is available for teachers’ usage?

After being given the school curriculum, what you need to know next is if the school provides the equipment necessary in getting the job done. Is the use of technology incorporated into the teaching scheme of the teacher and does the school provide it? The teacher needs to answers to these questions.

Knowing the answer to this will help you know how to best organize your classes, what to use and when, as well as effectively using your periods.

3.  What extra assignments does the school require from the teachers, e.g. lunch duty?

A teacher’s duty definitely goes beyond the classroom. To know what these extra duties entail; is to get yourself prepared mentally and physically. This will also help you plan your expectations for the day.

You don’t want to make schedules you won’t be able to keep because you are unaware that there’s after school tutoring.

4. What is the school’s perspective on discipline?

There are different disciplining strategies adopted by schools. You don’t want to be punishing a student who has done wrong in a way the school won’t support if they got wind of it. So it’s good to ask about the rules and regulations of the school, as well as the disciplinary measures put into place.

Having these rules up in your classroom with the punishment attached would also go a long way in keeping your students on the leech. And when they default, they are aware of what their punishment would be without feeling being treated unfairly.

These question amongst other questions is important for the teacher to have concise answer to, you don’t want to violate school code of conduct for teachers.

5.  What kind of staff development opportunities do they offer?

Every working place should create room for growth and development for its employees. Seminars, workshops and the likes should be organized for teachers from time to time. This not only keeps the teachers innovated and motivated but also creates an ideal environment.

So ensure to ask about how the school cater for the development of its staff.

Check out our post on how to teach like a pro


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