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Advice on leaving before academic year

Discussion in 'Teaching assistants' started by Leavesandtwigs, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Leavesandtwigs

    Leavesandtwigs New commenter

    Hi there, I need some advice on leaving my TA role before academic year, likely sometime in April. This is my first role in a school (I’m agency) which I took shortly after my mother passed away suddenly, which meant I had to leave my job and return to my home country. On returning to the Uk I took this job as an interim solution, and was honest with the recruitment agency that I would not be seeing out the entire academic year, as I can’t afford to live on the day rate.

    On entering the school, it’s clear they have different expectations, and have even begun talking about plans for next year. I realise I could have done things differently, such as communicate my needs directly with the school during interview as I know recruitment agents often leave out information so they can make their cut.

    I’m now in a situation where I feel terrible letting the school, and the children, down. Although I’m agency and my notice period is a matter of days, I plan to give at least 2 weeks to ease the burden of replacing me.

    My question is, is it usual for there to be an expectation that agency staff remain long term (the full academic year)? I had thought agency roles were generally short term. Will I be able to use This school as a reference? I will be there at least 8 months when I leave.

    Thank you
  2. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    Expectations are wonderfully fluid things and come from the very poor lines of communication between supply, agency and school. So it's much simpler to decide what you want and then be vague and precise enough with different people to get this outcome. Other parties are also trying this in their own ways.

    If this moral vacuum appals you then reflect on the fact that the school 'expects' a contracted TA on supply rates. They want the freedom to chuck you when it suits but expect loyalty from you. Agencies just want money so they are easy to read there (but very good at getting it).

    It's not a case of 'able to use This school as a reference', your current Head is a necessary referee so I suggest you keep the Real Reference Writer (not the Head I bet) onside against this moment. If all else fails your agency would be a referee but that will just be "worked on these dates and didn't hit any pupil"

    You could always use the above uncertainty to get a proper contract but money probably stops you from this.
    Catgirl1964 and sunshineneeded like this.
  3. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    Even on a permanent contract people leave so give the required notice or more if you wish and leave.
    JohnJCazorla and sunshineneeded like this.
  4. sunshineneeded

    sunshineneeded Star commenter

    As agency staff, you are absolutely entitled to give the required notice and leave. As @JohnJCazorla says, the school would feel free to let agency staff go at any time if it suited them - I've seen it happen. You were honest with the agency and, in theory, it's their job to communicate that to the school. Do give as much notice as you can - you never know when you may be looking for a TA role again - and be honest about your reason for leaving.
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  5. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    "Hello Head, thank you for seeing me. I'm enjoying my work here but I'm now looking to the future. I don't know if the agency told you when they put my name forward that I'm really looking for a permanent post rather than supply?
    I've seen some posts I'd like to apply for; would I be able to put you down as a referee?"

    If this school wanted someone who would stay long-term, they needed to appoint someone to a contract, not use supply. You have no job-security at the moment, and you're perfectly entitled to be looking for a longer-term post. If they would like you to stay next year, they can offer you a post.
    JohnJCazorla likes this.

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