The Face of the Future

I do not know how they do it, but the quality of newly trained students that we see at interview is astonishing.

On Thursday this week we interviewed to fill a teacher vacancy in Year 3. The whole process was conducted via the internet, including devising the process, shortlisting and interviewing. I have never done it this way before, and we had our doubts about what we could discover via video:

  • We could not see teaching,
  • We might not pick up on relationships,
  • How would we assess warmth?
  • What planning and teaching skills could we watch?

But it was a revelation and the four candidates were extraordinary.

I could make this blog post into a test of ordering comparatives and superlatives: the four young teachers we saw were incredible; engaging, inventive, empathetic, confident, warm, witty, open, honest, self-aware, capable, reflective, and about ten years’ experience better than I was at that stage of my career.

That we could attract applications from four so talented people is nice, and perhaps says something good about our school. Maybe it says that we write a good advert, run a decent-looking website and have a fair local reputation. The way each shone during the interview might reflect well on the way we put each at ease and set up the process. Their warmth possibly reflected ours. It was, whichever way round, a fabulous way to spend a day at work and left us feeling quite in awe, honoured to be setting someone on their way in their teaching career, and thrilled for our Year 3 pupils in September.

That all four are so good, at the very start of their careers, says a huge amount about them, their colleges, their secondary schools and all the people who have worked to develop such great people. I am grateful for all you have done, as I know my pupils are about to gain a great deal from their new teacher’s skills, knowledge and enthusiasm.

It is easy to say, yet on this occasion it really is true: we would very, very happily have appointed all four candidates. The first phone call I make after we reach a decision is to the person we have selected, just in case they turn us down at the offer. I always ask and hope.

We are certain that every child will love Miss Hayden and be very proud to be in her class.

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