Your NQT job application checklist

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Congratulations! You’ve attained your teaching qualifications. Now you can begin applying for your first Newly Qualified Teaching (NQT) position. This kicks off the exciting induction phase of your career. Ultimately, you will be a fully-fledged, legally employed teacher.

So here’s what you need to do to next.

Prepare your paperwork

Now that you’re ready to begin looking for your first NQT position, it’s crucial to prepare your paperwork for applications. Normally, you can expect to be asked to provide an application form and a supporting letter. You may also be asked for an executive summary to show whether you match the job criteria.

If a visit was arranged, refer to this in your application and explain why the experience inspired you to want to work here.

Mutual first impressions

Often a key step in a school’s recruitment process will be to arrange a visit for you.

This allows you to get a first-hand impression of the school, its teachers and its pupils. This will help you decide if this is a good choice for you.

Of course, it also gives the head teacher and recruiters the opportunity to test your knowledge, both of education and the school itself. They’ll also be able to assess your personality. Of special note will be your engagement with the pupils.

These mutual first impressions really do count so research the school in detail before visiting.

Tell your story so far

Whether as part of your CV or supporting letter, create the narrative of your journey into teaching. Why does education inspire you? What motivates you?

This shouldn’t be an epic the size of Game Of Thrones. Everyone is busy, especially education recruiters, so be brief and to the point.

Time to get personal

Prepare a personal statement in support of your job application. This gives you the opportunity to detail why you feel you’re the best person for the position. This information will be key to get you on the shortlist. Bullet point your qualifications, work experience and personal qualities, such as good communication and perseverance.

Be sure to tailor each application to the school and the vacancy to show how you’re a good match.

Provide the referees’ decision

References play a central role in choosing and vetting NQTs. Usually you’ll need to provide the names, addresses and contact details of two referees who, if asked, will provide references to support your application.

One will be your current or most recent employer. The other could be your former lecturer or the head teacher from a placement.

Sometimes a school will request a reference from an employer for whom you worked with children or young people.

Narrow your search

There are many types of schools to choose from. There are also many options for how often and in what capacity you want to work. Would an NQT supply position be suitable, for example? Perhaps you’d rather have a more stable full-time option, even if this was temporary.

Take your time reviewing a wide range of job vacancies to help you decide.

Learn from the experts

A great way to find out how to succeed is to seek advice from experienced teachers. This is where Teacheroo can help. We offer a dedicated, friendly space where you can share experiences. Peers include those setting out on their NQT teaching journey and experienced pros. This will offer encouragement and build your confidence.

There are also online resources where you find out more about what is expected of an NQT. Check out some of these NQT focused sources for great content and advice:

All of this homework will give you invaluable knowledge for your application and interview.

A female teacher walks outside smiling and looking at her phone

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