CV tips for teachers and school leaders looking to change careers

Among the many challenges involved with considering a career change from education to another field is the application process. In short, how to navigate the world of CVs when you have never had to write one.

Here’s a simple guide for teachers and school leaders on how to write a CV.

Whilst there is a vast choice of styles and templates, core content is relatively standard. Sections will include:

  • Contact details
  • Profile summary or overview
  • Core skills and strengths
  • Professional experience or achievements
  • Work history
  • Education and qualifications
  • Interests (optional)
  • References (usually “available upon request”)

Whilst layout is a matter of personal preference, what is essential is the attention to detail. This means getting the dates right, accounting for gaps in work history. More importantly, it is vital that your CV is thoroughly checked for spelling and grammatical errors.

One of the most common errors I see as a professional CV writer and career coach is lack of relevance to the post being applied for. Think of it like a lesson plan – your CV will need to demonstrate how your skills can be adapted to the role of interest in the same way that you need to differentiate teaching content to suit the learners. If your CV is not tailored and relevant, chances of shortlisting will be compromised, especially if ATS is being used.

ATS – what you need to know about Application Tracking Software.

Essentially, companies use ATS to process large quantities of applications using computer software which scans for key words, phrases, suitability, etc, determining which CVs match the job role. Around 25% of the “best” CVs reach the recruiting team, who then make decisions on which candidates to shortlist.

The implication is that 75% of CVs will not be viewed by humans if ATS is used, which is why you will read about “optimising” your CV for ATS. This means increasing your chances of getting your CV to be selected by ATS and therefore reaching recruiters. This is done through use of key words, impact statements, professional relevance to the role, and among other things, font styles and sizing.

One simple tip is to make sure your CV can be “read” by a computer. You will be shocked at how many CVs end up in the rejection pile because of this. If the ATS programme cannot “read” your CV, it is not going to identify ANY skills, let alone relevant ones. So, stick to common fonts – now is not the time to be using obscure fonts to show your creativity.

Your CV has one job only – to get you to an interview. If you find yourself applying but never getting shortlisted, it is highly recommended that you get your CV reviewed or even re-written. If your CV does not get you to the interview stage, you cannot be offered the job! It is that simple.

If you want more help and would rather have a professional CV writing service, click on the link below for details and reach out on the Mapleleaf Vision contact page.



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I first worked with Will whilst I was a junior member of a teaching team. I worked closely with him for around three years and he became a true mentor to me. During this time Will helped encourage me to discover my own leadership style and he mapped out what it takes to be successful. I highly recommend Will for life and career coaching.

Will is a professional, natural leader who manages to make you feel at ease. He manages to be both emphatic and encouraging, whilst also managing to challenge you to find your own answers. Will’s approach is totally non-judgmental and the sessions are really focused on you and on what you want to achieve. Working with Will has allowed me to address challenges I was facing and he brought a wealth of resources and practical tools to help me set goals, clarify my values, and explore avenues right away. Even though I left teaching 5 years ago, I still seek out Will for his help and guidance and I appreciate his versatility as a thought partner, ally, and coach. Our sessions are always productive and efficiently run, which is perfect for someone who is juggling many priorities! Will brings great communication, professionalism and quality to his work and I highly recommend him as a life/business coach.
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Will at Mapleleaf vision fitted me in for a last minute decision-making session that I needed to make ASAP re. a job offer / career change. He was friendly, professional, and really knew his stuff! He unpicked things that I could never have done on my own. I’m so grateful to him & will be highly recommending him to everyone! Where there is a ‘Will’, there’s a way! Thank you, Will. You truly have a gift.
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