If your pupils are invited to interview teachers applying for a position at your school, it’s likely you will have a good idea of what kind of candidate you’re looking for. The best way to find out who fits that description is to ask good questions, so here’s a list that could help you to get the most from your interview.
- What activities would you like to see brought into the school and why?
This question could tell you how involved the applicant will be in areas of the school other than their own lessons.
- What changes would you make to improve our school?
The answer here will tell you A) what the applicant thinks of your school, and B) if their ideas for change are in line with the school councils own.
- How would you resolve a conflict between two pupils?
Ideally the panel will agree that the applicants response is fair while still solving the problem.
- What would be your approach to making lessons more fun for students?
Remember, you will want the applicant to give an answer that you think will engage and enthuse the whole class. Not just something you think sounds like fun for you.
- What would it take in your class for a pupil to be punished with detention?
Again, consider what would work best for everyone in the class and look for applicants whose answers match your own thinking.
- What does bravery mean to you?
It’s important to ask some questions that will tell you something about the person will be teaching you that’s not strictly education related. You might get some surprising answers that will help you make a decision.
- Why did you go into teaching?
This question is an opportunity for the applicant to express their enthusiasm for teaching, which a good quality to look for in an interview.
- What did you enjoy most when you were at school?
Asking this might help you to understand the applicant more personally while also telling you a bit more about what they find important in education.
- What’s the best experience you’ve had while teaching?
You’ll want to listen carefully to how the candidate replies to this question. It may tell you what learning style they prioritize.
- If you weren’t a teacher, what would you be doing?
This question is another opportunity to learn a little more about the applicants interests beyond teaching.
- Do you have and could you tell us about your favourite teacher?
Hopefully the answer to this question will tell you what sort of teacher the candidate would like to be.
- How would describe your teaching style?
This one is fairly straightforward. Look for applicants who are clearly interested in what teaching style works best, rather than just the style the council prefers.
- What’s your favourite subject (other than the one you teach)?
This question is another chance for the panel to learn a bit about the interests and personality of the candidate.
- What’s your view on homework?
Teachers can vary in how much emphasis they put on homework. It might be worth listening out for candidates whose views are aligned with your own.
Remember to check out the Smart School Council model. It will help you to think about how to widen engagement to the whole school.