05/03/2023 by Carney Sandoe Staff |

Dos and Don’ts of Closing Your Search

At this time of year, things can start to happen very quickly in the hiring departments of independent schools.

Frame of a person's hands closing a laptop on a table

Contracts are issued, some are returned, candidates interview on-campus, and offers are made.

You may have spent the past few months contemplating a change, only to decide recently that it is in your best interest at this point to sign your contract and remain at your current school for the coming year. If you have also been interviewing at other schools of interest, how do you close your search while maintaining those important connections you’ve already established?

Here are some “dos and don’ts” to help you navigate this time.

DON’T “Ghost” Anyone

The top thing you should definitely not do? “Ghost” the schools with which you’ve been interviewing. Once you have signed your contract, don’t go radio silent and stop responding to schools with which you have been in touch. Indeed, you also need to respond to new schools to which you have recently been referred that might reach out to you. A non-response is never a good option; rather, tell new schools that you are no longer searching, but thank them for reaching out.

Another person you should definitely not “ghost?” Your CS&A Placement Associate! Let them know as soon as you sign your contract so they can put your search on hold.

DO Call/Email Schools to Remove Yourself from the Search

If you have had any interaction with a school — from a phone interview to an on-campus interview — you need to get in touch with the hiring contact and let them know that you are no longer searching. If you were particularly interested in the position, be sure to indicate that in your conversation and ask to keep in touch. You never know what opportunity might arise in the future.

DON’T Continue to Interview

If you’ve signed your contract but have an on-campus interview scheduled, don’t go anyway — whether “just for practice” or to see if “something better” is out there. It does not reflect well on you if you break your contract with your school, and it is a waste of the interviewing school’s time for you not to be upfront with them and allow them to allocate their resources to available candidates.

DO Keep in Touch

As mentioned above, try to keep in touch with school contacts with whom you had a particularly good rapport or at schools that were particularly appealing to you. These individuals help build your network and could lead to good-fit opportunities for you down the road.

DON’T Ask CS&A to Keep Sending Referrals

Once you have signed a contract, we can no longer refer you to positions. Because schools are our clients, it is a conflict of interest for us to do so. Even if you are curious about “what’s out there,” we unfortunately cannot continue to send your file to schools unless you have a written letter from your head of school allowing us to continue sending referrals.

DO Have a Conversation with Your Placement Associate

Before inactivating your file, have a phone or email conversation with your CS&A Placement Associate. Let them know why you have decided to stay at your current school, update them on the status of your active referrals, and inform them of your plans for next year. We want to be the best possible resource for you, and our relationship with candidates extends far beyond the course of a single hiring season.

Want to explore career opportunities in independent schools? Carney, Sandoe & Associates is here to help teachers like you find jobs in K-12 independent schools across the United States — for free.

Learn more about us here or contact us today to discuss your job search.

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