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Covering for absent colleagues.

Discussion in 'Scotland - education news' started by sicilypat, Apr 29, 2019.

  1. sicilypat

    sicilypat New commenter

    I am looking for a bit of clarification regarding the provision of cover for colleagues who are off long-term. I had assumed that the LA funded supply when the duration of a teacher's absence had exceeded some threshold point. Has this changed? We are covering internally for a colleague who has been absent for more than 4 weeks and are now wondering if this should be happening. Increasingly we are also doubling up classes, often at short notice. This has been stressful as it upsets lesson planning significantly. I should add that I work in the ASN sector.
  2. Marisha

    Marisha Occasional commenter

    My recollection is that - at one point - cover had to be bought in after 5 working days. However, we had a similar situation at my place of work last year, and the SSTA rep told me that that's no longer the case - we can be asked to cover provided we don't go below our minimum non-contact.
    sicilypat likes this.
  3. inthered

    inthered Occasional commenter

    Cover should be paid for by the LA, as far as I know, on the 21st day of absence. That’s 4 5-day weeks. Easter may have disrupted the process, plus the added problem of lack of supply teachers. 3-day agreements fell away after McCrone when the Working Time Agreement came in on a school by school basis, I think. That was what we were told, at least, last time I was complaining about covering for absent colleagues for what seemed like forever.
    sicilypat likes this.
  4. GuessWho

    GuessWho Occasional commenter

    The get out clause for authorities now is that they can claim they can't find any supply staff and so schools have to cover internally until the absent teacher returns.
    As long as nobody has greater than 22.5 hours of class contact and/or more than 20/30/33 pupils in front of them the employers will make very little real effort to bring in supply.
    I know of a supply teacher who appeared in our school who told me he was phoning the council everyday looking for work but was informed there was no supply cover required - this was at a time when our school had been 3 or 4 folk down for months.
    catmother likes this.
  5. sicilypat

    sicilypat New commenter

    This is really hugely concerning, but unsurprising. Unions should be on to this.
  6. teachaaaaaa

    teachaaaaaa New commenter

    Unfortunately if you are within your contracted hours for contact you take the class, it’s not a negotiation. If it takes your numbers over or your hours over 22.5 per week you can then decline unless it’s a genuine emergency. A long term known absence would not be classed as such. You can also refuse to provide cover or mark work for classes not on your timetable. That can be a double edged sword though as I one year had all my junior classes sent out to general supply and inherited a n5, higher and advanced higher from an ill colleague to add to my own n5 and highest in two subjects! Boak!

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