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Being a teacher/ parent in independent schools

Discussion in 'Independent' started by lindsaygii, Nov 19, 2018.

  1. lindsaygii

    lindsaygii New commenter

    I am currently teaching abroad but would like to move back to the UK, largely for personal reasons. I have a son who will be moving up to Secondary soon and I'm thinking that it might do him and me very well to be in one of the really good grammar/ independents. I'm thinking Manchester, Wells, somewhere great to live with a really great school.

    So my question is, really, could we manage it? I am a single parent, so my income has to be enough for us both to be housed and live on. Having said that, I don't want to live in. The point of this move is largely about getting away from the insularity of that kind of life and setting up our own network of friends who are not part of school.

    Do teachers get paid any more in the independents than on MPS? Do teacher/ parents get free places/ fee reductions in the independents?

    I'm not afraid of hard work, have set up and run several clubs including STEM projects in my current school, I'm a team player who will chip in and make my mark.

    But in return I really do need a decent salary and a place for my son. How likely is this, do you think?
  2. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    A decent salary will largely be a given in independent senior schools. Most pay above MPS.

    Most schools offer a fee reduction, but how much this is varies enormously. Some will be as little as 10% and some as much as 50%+.

    Living in will make life much cheaper for you, but may not be what you want. A life outside school will be hard in an independent anyway, so you may not be much worse off living in.
    Lolaforever and ViolaClef like this.
  3. lindsaygii

    lindsaygii New commenter

    Thanks for those points, it's very useful. I'm interested though as to why life outside school is likely to be hard? Is it an income thing? One of my main fears about returning to the UK is that you get used to a decent lifestyle in international schools (although incredibly boring where I live) and the idea of returning to austerity is nerve-racking.
  4. Skeoch

    Skeoch Star commenter

    You will find that an independent boarding school will keep you very busy - and the children too - even if they are day pupils, not boarders. Living in has major financial advantages - at least while you are working. You may well get a bigger house than you'd otherwise afford and it could be in a nicer area. The subsidised rent generally doesn't generate a taxable benefit. It does mean that when you leave you are homeless - so many people will buy a holiday and retirement home as well. Pay in the top schools will be above what you'd get in the maintained sector; that is less likely to be true when you go well down the league tables, and you do need to ask careful questions.
    Details vary of course: some schools offer bigger fee discounts than others; some offer finance schemes; some will offer scholarships to staff children as well as the staff discount. Our school pays council tax and water bills; oil for central heating is at the school's price so less than domestic; all repairs paid for; phone costs repaid on request.
  5. Northernsole

    Northernsole Occasional commenter

    Our school is one of the most expensive in the UK, and pay is well below state schools for most teachers, well above it for SLT. I strongly advise you to not be embarrassed about talking money in your interviews. Ask to see the pay scale, and ask about progression on it. Also, many independent schools will negotiate over pay. The squeeky wheel gets the oil.
  6. nighttrace

    nighttrace New commenter

    Not only full boarding schools, some day/boarding schools also offer assistance in housing.

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