I was fully prepared for this post to be my fourth entry in what seemed like an ongoing struggle to get my hiring paperwork processed through the DOE. Just to quickly recap, I was hired for a full-time teaching position. It’s my second job in the DOE, but my fourth nomination due to how the DOE sets up some of its other processes, like the Roster Evaluate to join the Teaching Collaborative and get placed at a Teaching Academy or the Person Not on Budget (PNOB) nomination that ties someone to a specific school in Galaxy. Nomination is DOE lingo for the hiring process – paperwork, fingerprints, background checks, all that jazz. It turns out that passing a background check and having a demonstrated record of good service isn’t enough for the DOE’s bureaucratic overloads. Candidates have to undergo the background nomination process for any new position.
I’m in good standing with the DOE from my time as a substitute teacher, but I’ve jocularly accepted the fact that my file number is cursed. Every darn time I’ve gone to the background investigation step in Applicant Gateway, I’ve gotten stuck there for an disgustingly long length of time.
Interested readers who know my frustrations all too well will recall that the OPIINFO email account is the only way advertised in order to reach. I mentioned in a previous post that a little Google magic and using the DOE’s Outlook directory allowed me to quickly figure out some of the folks that work behind the scenes at OPI. I don’t think they were terribly thrilled that I reached out to them directly, but desperate times call for desperate measures.
After rehashing this same story on four different occasions, I’m happy to say that I’ve been finally hired as a full-time teacher as of about a week ago. As long as I remain in my current position of special education teacher (and I intend to do so), I’m glad that I won’t have to deal with Applicant Gateway, background investigations, or OPI for the foreseeable future.
New hires get a congratulatory email when they complete the hiring process in Applicant Gateway, and I couldn’t have been happier to get that email. While this entry marks the end of my nomination saga, I know that future candidates will continue to experience the same difficulties that I did (I know of 4-5 subs and Teaching Fellows who had the exact same issue). Perhaps the Office of Teacher Recruitment and Quality (TRQ) can look more closely into the matter alongside their OPI colleagues to ensure that future candidates don’t have to endure what so many of us had to endure.