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Changes afoot in supply?

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by apulina, Jan 28, 2016.

  1. apulina

    apulina New commenter

    Anyone else experiencing a big shake up in the way schools are running supply?
    In my area the agencies are having to bid to be sole provider for schools.
    This means my small agency can't compete and I've had just one day's work in 2016.
    Apparently one of the big agencies is offering "free" teachers in order to win the bid!
    Unfortunately I have had to sign up with a competitor against my wishes.
    It seems really unfair if the big agencies are able to run a monopoly. My agency does a great job by their teachers, they aren't motivated by commission and know their teachers well / care about their preferences. I don't know if I can stand working for a regular agency and the way they operate. I have just heard from my old agency that someone from the new (big) agency was laughing down the phone at them :( :( :(
  2. PizzoCalabro

    PizzoCalabro Established commenter

    Interesting, had not heard this, but did have a situation relating to this I was intending to share on another thread.
    I have agencies, but mainly now direct schools and only keeping agencies on for contingency.
    One of the schools I emailed re direct work came back to me to say they were intending to provide cover via a Cover Supervisor, and inviting me to apply. I politely declined and forgot about it.
    Couple of months later one of my agencies contacted me offering work at that school. I was busy so didn't accept. Then got a call saying they are now exclusive supplier at that school, it was near me and they are keen to get me in there.
    So the CS experiment did not work, and it was back to same old - agency, but now exclusive.
    schools really need to get their business head on! If an agency has exclusivity the school loses bargaining power.
    Also, in the case of that school, I have now done several days there thru the agency, but they will have paid vastly more than they would if they had taken me on directly, as their nearest other school did...
  3. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Star commenter

    I wonder if these 'free teachers' will be paid by the agency, or will be one of those 'trial days' scams. If an agency has a monopoly then it would be in a position to strong arm teachers into doing unpaid trial days under the threat of 'do this, or don't work at all'.
  4. pixiewixiepixie

    pixiewixiepixie Occasional commenter

    "My agency does a great job by their teachers, they aren't motivated by commission and know their teachers well / care about their preferences."


    They really have suckered you in if you believe that!!!


  5. pixiewixiepixie

    pixiewixiepixie Occasional commenter

    "Then got a call saying they are now exclusive supplier at that school"

    Really? How do you know they are "exclusive"? Perhaps because they told you that, maybe? And what do you think the school will do if their "exclusive" agency can't provide them with someone? I know - they'd go somewhere else!!!

    You really need to wise up and think things through! These are commercial commission-based companies who will tell you anything if it suits them.
    wanet likes this.
  6. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    Question: How can you tell when a supply recruiter is lying?
    Answer: Their lips are moving.
    I am not aware that these so called exclusivity deals are enforceable.
    There is an enquiry in Wales right now into the situation of a designated agent for the entire South Wales region. More of that later. The Welsh parliament is trying to find a way to say they have been hoodwinked without losing face so it gets no mention in the news. The same is happening in England where the extent of the rip off is becoming more evident.
    Of course schools don't have to use agencies. They can source temporary staff anywhere. There is no law to bind schools or LEA to these contracts. They are fundholders. That's what taking so many of them from LEA control was about. It's got nothing to do with agencies.
    Say no to trial days.
    Say no to cover supervisor pay.
    Say no to agencies.
    It's a rip off.
    supplybychoice and wanet like this.
  7. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    Simple solution - everyone refuse to work via an agency - they will then disappear and schools will have to go direct. But it won't happen - so supply staff will continue to lose out.
    rainbowsparkle likes this.
  8. Deirds

    Deirds Senior commenter

    My agency had exclusivity with one school. They were really confident I'd get the job- only candidate, exclusivity. I don't know why I let them talk me into it because it was primary. The school managed to get round it and quite right too.
  9. schoolsout4summer

    schoolsout4summer Star commenter

    ROFLOL ? *** ?
  10. apulina

    apulina New commenter

    Sorry that your experience is not the same. This agency is run by a couple. They have asked what my preferences are regarding where I would like to work, how many days/week I would like to work and they have stuck to that! They haven't asked me to fill any placements I am not suitable for, or tried to send me to far flung places. I get sent to the same local schools so i have a chance to get to know the children/school. In short, I am very happy with them.
  11. PizzoCalabro

    PizzoCalabro Established commenter

    I doubt they are ever, or indeed for long. However, for now I don't see any other agency names in the visitors log (and I always nose thru those). Of course it isn't enforceable. The point I was making was the CS thing clearly did not work out and the school was worse off going thru an agency for the same resource - in this case me - that they could have got cheaper.
  12. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    Schools' administrators can't be expected to know that agencies are non statutory bodies who overcharge, trap their teachers in restrictive contracts and exploit all parties. Someone has to tell them.
    That would be you, via your union.
    At the risk of once again being mocked and called dictatorial, I would urge people who see the role of agencies as unsustainable to
    1. alert their MP to the Supply Teacher Early Day Motion, (EDM 301 2015/16) There is awareness in Westminster but not enough
    2. sign the 38 degrees petition Stop The Agency Rip Off In Education
    3. attend branch meetings of your union and raise the question of agency domination .
    4. Approach schools independently for supply work.
    5. Write to the letters page of your local paper, many of whom will withhold your name, and get the word out there that there is no teacher shortage, just a bottleneck caused by agencies.

    Don't take this lying down, If you want your career back, be proactive.
  13. supplybychoice

    supplybychoice New commenter

    This proves that you should never only have one agency. In my experience you should have at least three agencies.

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