“Once you decide on your occupation, you must immerse yourself in your work. You have to fall in love with your work. Never complain about your job. You must dedicate your life to mastering your skill. That is the secret of success and is the key to being regarded honorably.” – Unknown Quotes. Added by Oswald.
There are not many opportunities for promotion in the teaching service so competition for them is fierce. However, there are things that you can do to stand out from the crowd and enhance your chances of promotion. They are all centred on hard work:
- Upgrade your qualifications and skill sets to position yourself at the top of your field.
- Pursue professional training. This increases eligibility for promotion.
- Develop a very positive work ethic and attitude. You must have a huge appetite for work. You learn and achieve mastery by doing things; not by reading about them alone. This expertise is useful during interviews for higher positions, since you are speaking from actual experience and not educational theory alone.
- Ask your principal for more responsibility. Show him or her that you can successfully manage heavy workloads at levels above your current positional level. You can join the timetable team, for instance, or help with curriculum design, special projects, event planning or public exam entries. This way you will help to move the entire institution forward. Show that you can move beyond the narrow classroom, department, and year group levels and see the big picture.
- Never make excuses or blame others for your failures. Accept responsibility and find solutions for the problems yourself. Competent problem-solvers generally get promoted. Be proactive. Do not run to the principal when you have a problem. Solve it yourself. If you must go to the principal, make sure you have a solution to offer as well. This way, the principal will see how capable you are.
- Seek a mentor who is successful at the level you want to reach. He or she can give you priceless guidance in your career path and inform others who matter, about your ability to function at a higher level. Plan your career thoroughly and learn how to deal effectively with interview questions and scenarios.
- Be loyal to your principal and do all you can to help him or her to achieve stated school goals. This way you become a key member of the team and the principal will support your bid for promotion.
- Be a mentor yourself to other members of staff. Help them to develop their instructional skills, classroom management, pastoral care, professionalism, and engagement. This enhances mutual trust and respect among all team members. The entire institution will benefit.
- Be professional and well organized at all times. Pursue excellence and be a role model for all staff members. Be consistent, dependable, and always offer ideas to improve school effectiveness.
- See challenges as opportunities to demonstrate your ability and opportunities for growth. Do not fear them.
There is no guarantee that any given individual will be promoted, as there are too many candidates chasing too few available positions in the teaching service. However, there is general agreement among educational administrators that the recommendations given above can definitely improve your chances of being promoted. In spite of political considerations, I believe that merit and hard work are still rewarded most of the time.