Favorite Interview Questions for Leaders

As a candidate for a leadership job, your ability to anticipate and your skill in answering interview questions are absolutely the key to getting the job. I have successfully coached 100’s of candidates over the last five years, and written extensively on the subject. The confidential one-on-one work with my clients thoroughly prepares them. Preparation is essential for projecting an air of self-confidence and professionalism. The most often asked questions are listed below. Your strategies in addressing these questions and how your responses distinguish you from your competitors makes or breaks your candidacy.

  1. Tell us about yourself. Make your resume come alive.
  2. Why do you want to become a leader?
  3. What do you know about our school/district? Why do you want to work here?
  4. How would you deal with a veteran teacher who is not receptive to your recommendations?
  5. What characteristics do you look for in an excellent teacher?
  6. What do you look for when doing a teacher observation?
  7. What process would you follow in doing a teacher observation/evaluation?
  8. What expertise do you bring to your staff in enhancing student learning through the use of technology?
  9. How do you know (what evidence do you seek) that students are learning the concepts and skills that are being taught?
  10. How would you go about assisting a teacher who is having difficulty with classroom management/student discipline?
  11. What are the most productive ways of doing staff development so that teachers can enhance their teaching repertoire?
  12. Assuming that your primary assigned duties are:  bus, corridor and cafeteria duty; scheduling of assessments; student discipline; ordering textbooks and other supplies and materials—how will you learn to become an effective instructional leader?
  13. How would you go about leading a committee charged with fulfilling the Common Core Standards and/or revising a curriculum?
  14. Assume that there is a fight in the corridor, how would you deal with this?
  15. Assume you are attending a major educational conference, what kind of sessions would you attend?
  16. What would you do if one of your teachers refers 40% of your total discipline cases?
  17. If you were tasked with designing a new report card, how would you go about doing that?
  18. What would you do if your supervisor made a decision that you disagreed with and you felt would harm children?
  19. If you interviewed candidates for a teacher vacancy, what three questions would you ask them?
  20. Tell me about a student who you helped that might have changed that child’s life.
  21. How would you deal with a parent who is dissatisfied with how a teacher is conducting his/her class? Assume that the parent has already spoken to the teacher.
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