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Can you apply for a non teaching role in a school you are currently doing daily general cover for?

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by jen2049, Oct 19, 2019.

  1. jen2049

    jen2049 New commenter

    Not sure what the rules are here. I only do supply in one school, they ask for me specifically and I’m there around three days a week providing general cover. I’m thinking of switching from MFL to English in teaching (my degree was half English and half French), and I have done some previous English teaching in the past.

    There is a maternity cover role coming up for an English HLTA, and I was thinking that it would give me a great insight into the current English GCSE spec and the curriculum at KS3 and 4. Would I be allowed to do this? I would most likely apply for the role and go via the normal interview route too.

    Any help greatly received! I don’t want to ask the agency or the school yet without a bit more information.
     
  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    There is a slight complication here but I don't know the answer to it.

    If you were going for a teaching role and were introduced to the school by an agency, then an agency might want an introduction fee. Since this is an HLTA role, I am not sure what the agency/school's views on any money implications are.

    It may depend on how reasonable the agency is in terms of how it views the situation and what their contractual agreement is with you. If you still have your contract with the agency, go back through and read what it says about working directly with any school it introduces you to.

    The agency will see you as a money making unit and if you skip away into the sunset it loses a way to make money.

    On the other hand, it may not have a right to ask the school for money if you are going to a non-teaching role.
     
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  3. maximus0901

    maximus0901 New commenter

    Thank you. What are the rules around applying for a job via the normal procedure through an application and job interview? I've realised that I haven't had a contract sent to me from my employer.
     
  4. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    I agree that you shouldn't ask the agency anything but you won't find out anything from your contract, it's the contract between the school and agency that is the crucial one.

    I can't see anything wrong with having a discussion with HR (apart from the fact that they're almost certainly useless*) and they could shed some light on this. Also the school might well be prepared to pay the asking price if the agency has contractual right on its side. So unless you're worried about spending a few hours over writing the perfect application I'd advise you to go for it as the question you ask isn't really your problem.

    * apologies to the decent HR out there, there must be a few but I haven't met them yet.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  5. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    Wouldn't you get a much better insight (and pay) if you just did supply in English for a few months? I'd be surprised if schools weren't as desperate for English teachers as they are Maths/Science. This desperation means that any half-decent teacher can thrive and improve on the job.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  6. jen2049

    jen2049 New commenter

    Yes, totally agree. However I’m really keen to get experience first working in the department and I only do supply at this one school. I love it there. The department have said that they will be asking for me to do all general cover they get in the English department. After doing that role I’d hope that I could then either apply for an English role at that school or another one 2/3 days a week.

    When HR is mentioned, do you mean the school HR or the agency HR? Thanks.
     
  7. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    I mean the school HR, I'm not even sure agency HR exists (or at least not for supply teachers on the agency's books).
     
  8. jen2049

    jen2049 New commenter

    Yes, it’s a bit of a tricky one! I don’t want to offend the cover administrator. She is so good to me with supply and always calls me first over anyone else and asks for me by name. I made the decision to just do supply to fit around my kids but I’m starting to think I’d like to take a bit more on. If I did a long term supply working the department then I wouldn’t be able to apply for a job at the school if it came up, but as a HLTA I would. Plus, the HLTA pay is exactly the same as supply!
     
  9. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    What! How underpaid is that? I take back the part about not wanting to lie to the agency. They will have been benefitting massively from the difference that comes from these 2 statements.
    "Hi Cover Administrator, I appreciate that @jen2049 is the teacher you want but she is quite expensive so we're going to have to charge extra to get her"
    "Hi Jen, The OK School really wants you again but they can't afford to pay you more than TA rates"

    I absolutely agree about ALWAYS keeping the cover administrator sweet but I'm not sure how your decision will affect her much. And whenever you're at the school you can be nice to her (you should be anyway) to make sure that she is not offended.
     
  10. jen2049

    jen2049 New commenter

    HLTA rates in a secondary are about the same as an NQT I think. So yep, I’d be better off being a HLTA and getting experience at the same time! I’ll wait for the job to come up first and then approach HR. It’s quite a tricky situation I know!
     
  11. jen2049

    jen2049 New commenter

    So
    So I worked out that daily rates for a HLTA are less than supply, BUT when you include all of the school holidays that supply don’t get paid for, over the year it works out the same.
     
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  12. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    The agency has introduced you to the school, so they can charge their introduction fee. The pay grade of the role you apply for is immaterial.
     
  13. historygrump

    historygrump Lead commenter Forum guide

    It is a difficult issue in that the rules generally mean that the school should pay a fee to the agency, but if you apply for a advertised post, then I am unsure. I would apply and if the agency says anything tell them to impersonate a turkey at Christmas and get stu*fed.
     

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