How to get to Interview Stage

Most international schools receive between 50 and 200+ CVs (resumes) for each job. The more prestigious the school and the more popular the location the higher the number.  You might be the most amazing teacher in the world who can interview like a champ, but you won’t get through the door without a very good CV/Resume.

  • List your full work history – where you taught, what subjects and levels you taught, and from/to dates for each job that include month/year.  List the curriculum you taught. This is very important. 
  • List your accomplishments, especially if you can use figures. Did you have a high EAL cohort? Did you have a good exam pass rate? Did your students win awards? List this. It’s so much better than listing a job description. Schools want to know what you did do (your accomplishments), not what you were supposed to do (your job description). 
    • If you were a regular classroom teacher, you DONT need to list your job description. Every school leader and school HR officer knows what a teacher should do - marking, lesson plans, teaching, planning, meetings with parents. Instead, you need to focus on the results your students had, the difference you made to the wider school community, the impact you had as a teacher in figures/numbers/promotions or extra responsibility given/ external recognition etc.  Use figures/numbers/percentages if possible. 
  • List after school clubs you ran. It shows you are invested in the wider community and also what you can offer to a prospective employer
  • Spellcheck!
  • Remember keywords and phrases.  They should be matched to the job you want. For example if you are applying to a job as an Assessment Coordinator, make sure the word assessment and your accomplishments in assessment are in your CV frequently. If you are going for a leadership job, make sure you use words like ‘lead’ ‘led’ ‘supervise’ and ‘organised’.  Many schools use automated software AND CV reviewers often behave like automated software, skim reading for key words to decide where to focus. With hundreds of CVs to read for each post, you need to make sure your looks the part.


  • Use acronyms if you are applying to a school outside of your curriculum/country. Spell it out.
  • Exceed 4 pages. Nobody will read beyond it and it makes you look egotistical and/or unappreciative of the reader’s time. You can explain nuances in the interview, not on paper.
  • Put your contact details in the header or footer. Many schools, especially groups, use automated software and they miss headers/footer content. They won’t be able to contact you.

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