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Agency tips much appreciated

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by skye78, Mar 29, 2019.

  1. skye78

    skye78 New commenter

    Hello again everyone.

    Despite my best efforts to secure a permanent role, nothing seems to work out. I'm therefore having to register with supply agencies again. Needs must.

    I just wondered if anyone knows of an agency to avoid for example? I know they bleed us dry, but any horror stories from some agencies to stay well away from would be much appreciated.

    Also would it be better registering with one or several? I've done supply before but the world was a much easier place even quite recently.

    Sorry for so many questions and thank you in advance for any help you can offer.
    pepper5 likes this.
  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi skye78

    We are not allowed to name agencies on here, but if you state what county you are in, then anyone reading your post about agency recommendations can send you a private message.

    You need to register with several. That way on any one day that increases your chances of getting work.

    Ensure you keep copies of contracts you are given and don't accept work from agencies unless they agree they will pay you PAYE.

    Write upma list of the schools you know have serious behaviour issues and decide you won't go to those schools. Sometimes you won't know unless you go to a school, but if you ever have a day where you don't want to go back to a school, tell the agency and don't be afraid of not getting more work since the agencies know the score on terrible schools.

    On a separate note, it would not hurt for you to write to some decent schools directly and try to find supply work that way. It is a bit more difficult but people have been successful in doing it.

    Are you looking for day to day or medium to long term? In secondary, no planning or marking is required on day to day; but in primary even on day to day you might have to mark literacy and numeracy books.

    For long term roles you will have planning and marking so you have to push for a higher daily rate.

    You might be better off with day to day supply until you can get into the swing of it all again and find out which schools you enjoy and which ones to avoid.

    In the long term if you are young, I would look into gaining a second skill set as a backup.
  3. skye78

    skye78 New commenter

    Thank you SO much for all your very helpful advice Pepper.

    Lincolnshire based and looking for daily supply ideally for now in secondary schools. Hopefully some work will arise.

    Again thank you for taking the time to reply with your very helpful advice. I really do appreciate it .
    agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  4. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    No problem as it is my pleasure to help and I hope the readers in Lincolnshire respond to you by private message.

    Don't forget to consider contacting some schools directly.

    Try to go to the better schools.

    If you think you could manage upper key stage 2, you might get more work if you can do both secondary and primary and years 5 and 6 can be fun to teach.

    Let us know what happens.
    agathamorse likes this.
  5. agathamorse

    agathamorse Senior commenter

    I'm in South Lincolnshire and there isn't much in the way of day to day secondary near me. Most secondaries are using cover supervisors now. There is one school that occasionally needs day to day but the behaviour there is the worst I've seen in 24 years of teaching. They only need cover when their cover supervisors are off sick. It's long term here and even that is scarce in secondary but there's more in primary.
    JohnJCazorla, pepper5 and install like this.
  6. skye78

    skye78 New commenter

    Many thanks again Pepper for all your advice!

    Ah ok...I'm central in Lincolnshire so can commute to the north, northeast , etc. And my subject is a shortage subject so hopefully that will help. Thankfully I won't need many days to get by and that's the main thing. I have no intention of killing myself by taking work every single time.

    Thank you again for the information received.
    agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  7. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter


    If you are in a shortage subject and need only two or three days then that will be much better for you.

    On a separate note, when you get yourself more settled, perhaps you could look into getting a second skill set - something you could do alongside teaching or leave it altogether if you want to one day.

    I hope someone reads your post and helps you out with some decent agencies.

    Keep us posted.
    JohnJCazorla and agathamorse like this.
  8. agathamorse

    agathamorse Senior commenter

    If your shortage subject is MFL, there isn't a shortage of us in Lincolnshire. So many schools have closed down some language courses and downsized their MFL departments that there are lots of us chasing the same maternity contracts. If you're maths, English or science you should be ok.
  9. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    Have sent you a pm
    agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  10. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Thank you blazer.
    agathamorse likes this.
  11. skye78

    skye78 New commenter

    That is all very helpful. Thank you once again for all your support.

    Blazer, I shall reply now too.
    pepper5 and agathamorse like this.
  12. jordan.wells

    jordan.wells New commenter

    I am in Presteigne, Powys - so, Powys, Herefordshire, Worcestershire or Shropshire. Any recommendations?
    pepper5 likes this.
  13. elvispenhaligon

    elvispenhaligon Occasional commenter

    Keep your pace up. Supply teaching can be a lonely depressing spiral of misery. If you feel it going this way, get out. YOu may find it great, but nothing screws you up like lack of money and worrying about money, or seeing all of your pals get married, buy houses and take off whilst you are a failed leper of a not-good-enough.

    I found out the hard way and it's been an interesting path.

    Failing that, it's the right time of the year to get your outdoor "tomato" plants in.

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