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Guest Guidelines for the Teacher Wellbeing Podcast

I’m so pleased you are interested in being on the Teacher Wellbeing podcast. I love hearing from people who want to share their story or expertise with my audience, however not everyone is an appropriate guest for this podcast. 

As my show has grown over the years, I’ve gotten to know more and more what my podcast audience likes, finds valuable and needs help with. 

As I’ve gained more of a following and more pitches, I’ve also had to become selective with who I allow on the show in order to maintain integrity of the show and to serve my audience. 

Please know that it’s nothing personal, it’s simply a matter of whether or not you are a good fit for my particular audience. 

If you don’t meet the requirements below, then please don’t request to be on the Teacher Wellbeing podcast at this time.

Before you send me a pitch, there are a few things you need to know:

  1. I feature two types of people on my podcast: teachers who are sharing their stories of overcoming health challenges and cultivating wellbeing, and professionals with expertise that can help teachers in their goal of overcoming health challenges and cultivating wellbeing. You possibly fit into both those groups. The advice that follows pertains to one or both of those situations.
  2. This is a podcast about teacher health, happiness, resilience and wellbeing. Our focus is on teachers as people, not professionals, and on keeping teachers in the classroom and as well as they can be. We do not discuss curriculum, pedagogy or behaviour management or classroom related topics, and nor do we cover teacher side-hustles. Therefore, if you want to talk about your classroom improvements, or have a teacher resource, can offer professional advice for teachers about teaching, or if you are seeking to offer support to teachers seeking to start businesses, this is not the podcast for you.
  3. It’s fine if you now have a different career and have teacher wellbeing-related expertise to share. However, to be on the Teacher Wellbeing podcast, you need to have been a teacher at some stage in your career and/or have an education degree. Schools and classrooms are a world of their own, a world which many people still don’t understand except through the lens of their own childhood schooling. My audience simply prefers to hear from people who understand from the inside out the demands the teaching profession. Early childhood, TAFE or university teaching experience are fine, but bear in mind that the majority of my audience are primary and high school teachers. The exception to this rule is if you have demonstrated and extensive professional experience working with teachers or in schools, e.g. a school guidance counsellor or a physiotherapist that has lots of clients who are teachers, or if I think there is urgent need for your expertise, such as a trauma specialist after the recent bushfires in Australia.
  4. If you are a teacher and have a story to share about a significant wellbeing challenge that you have overcome, I ask that you be at least 12 months and preferably 24 months out from the experience. Examples include: an accident, injury or serious incident at work; illness including depression, anxiety, cancer, autoimmune disease or any other ongoing condition; a health scare such as a benign lump or a diagnosis of a preexisting condition that predisposes you to more serious illness if you don’t change your lifestyle; grief/death of a close loved one; divorce; birth of a child; bullying at work (including from parents, students, colleagues or managers); burnout. For example, if you experienced bullying from a colleague at your school last year, and then you changed schools and life is better, but it’s only April, I recommend you wait until next year to apply to be on the show. Similarly, if you had a significant health challenge like an injury, an illness, or burnout, I recommend you wait until at least 18 months after being given the ‘all clear’ or returning to work, whichever is latest. I know first hand how raw things can be emotionally, even once you are finished treatment or able to return to work, and how much the learning and processing continues for many months after significant health experiences. I want to make sure it’s a safe space for you and doesn’t interrupt your emotional healing, and I also want to make sure that when you speak to my audience you are speaking from scars not wounds. 
  5. I am committed to protecting your privacy as a podcast guest if you are a teacher (e.g. we won’t share your last name or school name, or any other identifying details). If you would like to share your story but for whatever reason would like to take the anonymity one step further, I’m very happy for you to use a nom de plum or to alter any other details of your story (e.g. saying you’re from Brisbane when really you taught in Melbourne). I want you to be comfortable and safe in sharing your story and you can still give value to my audience even if we pretend your name is something else!
  6. My podcast is not about you. It’s also not about me. It’s about helping teachers focus on themselves as people first and teachers second so that they can thrive in life, and by extension the classroom. You need to pitching and guesting on this podcast with a view to give value to teachers first and foremost and not to push your own agenda. Being featured on the show is in and of itself a promotion of your expertise and your work, and you will be given opportunity to plug yourself at the end of the interview, so please don’t fill the episode with self-promotion. It corrupts the interview and I reserve the right to edit out unnecessary self-promotion or even discard the interview altogether if I feel it is too heavy on the promo and too light on the value for the audience. I will of course tag you on social media when the episode airs and I expect you to do the same. Remember, first and foremost it’s not about you. 
  7. I’m Australian and I live in Queensland. That means I often talk about Australian topics and issues. I trust you already know that if you’ve reached this far in the process, however if you are from overseas please keep in mind that my audience is also primarily Australian and specific information or advice about international school systems is not a fit for this podcast. Similarly, any podcast recordings need to be conducted between the hours of 9am and 6pm Australian, Eastern Standard Time, by appointment only. If you are in another part of the world, please check what time that would be in your time zone before pitching me.
  8. I’m a supporter of evidence-based, science-backed work and so are my audience. That doesn’t mean I think you can’t find personal fulfilment or healing in practices and modalities that have not been proven by science or that are a little bit “woo-woo”. Of course you can and many people do, myself included. However, it does mean I will be highly, highly unlikely to feature the modality/practice on this podcast. It also means I accept the science of climate change and support moves towards zero carbon economies and regenerating our planet. Any “alternative views” (i.e. climate science denial) will not be tolerated or broadcasted.
  9. This is not a party-political podcast, however education is inherently political in our society. As such, from time to time, political topics may be discussed and particular political views may be expressed. However, that does not mean that I accept pitches that are obviously pushing a party political line or particular agenda. Best practices and evidence-based research from around the world that happen to align with a particular political party’s education policy are not political. However, I would refer you to point 1: we focus on the health and wellbeing of teachers as people first, not their professional work. So, how does your policy or best-practice education research impact teacher’s wellbeing as people? If you can’t answer this, you aren’t a good fit.

Even after interviews have been recorded, I reserve the right not to put an interview to air or to edit out sections that I feel do not serve my audience or that may pose a risk to you, personally/emotionally or in your professional reputation.

I also suggest you read these two excellent articles from Julie Parker about how to be a good podcast guest before deciding to go ahead:

If you have read all of that and like to be on the podcast, please sent me an email to hello[at]selfcareforteachers[dot]com[dot]au with a bit about you, what you feel you can share that will be of value to my audience, and links to any pages or profiles you have online (if applicable) so that I can do my due diligence in researching you.