Applying for a job

Applying for a teacher or training role is a skill in itself - from the preparation and research to getting your experience and qualifications down on paper. This article will help you make your application shine through to the interview stage.

Depending on the role you're applying for you might want to adopt a different approach. Local authorities tend to advertise roles through direct adverts in newspapers and websites, teaching fairs and noticeboards. There may be some roles that are not advertised, so it might be a good idea to contact colleges and training providers directly to see if there are any potential roles.

CV or application form?

This depends on the employer, some are happy reviewing your CV and covering letter but others will ask you to complete an application form.

It’s important to keep your CV up to data to demonstrate your key attributes, skills and experience.

Your supporting statement or covering letter is your opportunity to highlight why you’re a good fit for the position and to describe relevant activities in previous roles - such as assessment methods and behaviour management strategies.

Key information to include

The most important thing in every application is to tailor it to the specific role.The job description will help you do this but you could also call or email the prospective employer to get more details or ask any questions you may have.

It’s typical to find the following sections on application forms:

  • Personal details
  • Employment history
  • Education and qualifications
  • Supporting information
  • References

“It’s rare that we accept CVs - most of the time we ask for an application with a supporting statement. With the supporting statement we’re looking for people who outline examples of how they’ve demonstrated experience of doing something, rather than just sayin ‘I was successful in doing Y and Z.” - Andrew McGuigan - HR Manager-Resourcing at Ealing, Hammersmith and West London College.


Do your research

This is a vital step. Don’t skip it. It’s a good idea to read Ofsted reports, achievement tables and search for relevant news articles and websites to get a good sense of an institution's ethos.

“We send lots of application forms out and often they are returned within an hour where all they’ve done is copied and pasted the information from their CV into the application form. That isn’t what we are looking for – we base our shortlisting on those people who’ve demonstrated to us that they have the skills and abilities to do the job we’re recruiting for.” - Carla Tudbury-Jones, Director of Quality at ProVQ, provider of apprenticeship programmes to the Automotive Industry.


Highlight your CPD

Support your application by highlighting your strengths and areas of development. Our self-assessment tool will help you identify these by showing how you are performing against the Professional Standards. Give specific examples showing your strengths and when you have worked on your weaknesses.

You can also demonstrate good CPD by:


Final checklist

  1. Keep it neat: If it’s handwritten, write your application form out carefully and neatly, using a black pen and block letters where requested.
  2. Be accurate: For online applications, run any text through a spell checker and print it out before hitting submit. Read it through on paper to check for any errors, or ask someone to give it a proofread.
  3. Don’t leave sections blank: Write ‘N/A’ if there is a section you aren’t required to fill out.
  4. Keep a copy: This will allow you to remind yourself of any key points ahead of an interview or presentation.