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Hey everyone I need help.

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by shahaviator, Jun 13, 2015.

  1. I plan on teaching fulltime in UK from January till April next year. I graduate this year.

    I am a NQT from Toronto Canada and planning on making a move to London. I plan on teaching and currently being approached by numerous agencies. My main options are Engage Education, Impact Ed, UTeach, Red teachers and Randstand Education.

    I was hoping anyone can shed some light regarding their overall experience with these agencies. I am very nervous having to make this move, but at the same time I am positive this can be a life changing experience for me and adding professional teaching experience to m CV.

    For anyone reading this can you please help a fellow educator out by telling me about your experience with the agencies. Possible which ones to avoid.

  2. historygrump

    historygrump Star commenter Forum guide

    Good morning shahaviator

    I cannot speak too much about London, because I live in Northern England, but of the agencies you mentioned I have worked for an agency that was absorbed by Randstad in Manchester and they are a big agency with offices and contacts all over the country, it can be luck of the draw in the consultant you get, some are good, some are average and some should be stacking shelves. I cannot comment on the others to be honest in that I have never heard of them and considering the number of agencies, it is not surprising.

    I would also consider other big agencies like Hays and Capita because of the contact these agencies generally have in schools. Hays are regarded as the poorest payers and many will seek to put you out as a cover supervisor (generally an untrained and unqualified) support school staff role, rather then as a teacher.

    Having said that I generally work for a smaller agency because I get on with the consultants, I hope this helps feedback helps..
  3. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    All agencies are governed by Conduct of Employment Agency legislation (2003) and Agency Workers Regulations (2010) so in terms of pay and conditions, theoretically they should all be the same. But there is a huge amount of variation in what they pay, how they pay it and where they place you. They are commercial businesses not statutory bodies so there is very little regulation of the market to ensure that agencies are complying with legislation.

    At the moment there is work for NQTs, so getting placed will probably not be an issue.

    Getting the best deal on pay and conditions is more tricky.

    Any two people working for the same agency in the same geographical area could have a completely different experience.

    There are plenty of newbie posts in this forum with information about how to avoid some of the pitfalls which could potentially leave you out of pocket.

    What you need to find out about is DBS certification. You cannot work in schools until you have been cleared by the Disclosure and Barring Service (which ensures you don't have a criminal record) Any agency will do the paperwork for you but don't pay for it until you are working and make sure you are just being charged the statutory fee and not an additional administration charge. You only need one certificate which will be applicable to any employer as long as you pay the renewal fee on receipt of the certification.


    It takes several weeks to clear so do that first.

    You will be expected to know about your duties under current safeguarding (Child Protection) legislation. This is the key statutory obligation that any agency must comply with. All schools have to have a policy on safeguarding and it is the teacher's responsibility to acquaint themselves with the key areas of concern.


    You can sign up to as many agencies as there are. Most of them are approaching the same client schools anyway so just spread your chances of finding a placement..

    This forum is excellent for help and honest advice from experienced teachers and good colleagues. I would also advise that you join a union.

    Good luck and stay in touch.

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