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Long term supply issues... advice please!

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by molly-pearce, Nov 17, 2018.

  1. molly-pearce

    molly-pearce New commenter

    Hi all, I have never posted before but have a string of issues that I just want some advice on.

    I am currently an NQT on a long term supply contract until christmas at a challenging school. Because I am on long term supply I am not on a nqt program and do not have a mentor. In the mix I have no head of department/ faculty and my line manager has a weekly meeting with my colleagues but not myself, she has said anything I want to address I can let my colleague know for the meeting. I have had a lot of issues with behaviour and have had very little support. This has been having a negative effect on my mental health and causing me a lot of anxiety. I emailed my line manager about 6 weeks ago with no response so then met with an assistant head. She contacted my line manager who approached me to arrange a meeting to try and get me some support. (this was about 5 weeks ago and still hasn’t happened) I feel like because I am on long term supply they do not want to invest a lot of time into me. I’m worried this is going to have a negative effect on my teaching practice in the future as I have just been trying to find my way.

    In the mix of this I have a gcse class who are extremely unengaged, do not take the subject seriously and 1/4 of them were put into the subject. They are behind on work from before I was teaching them but seem to have little desire to put the work in. I recently invigilated them sitting a mock paper and watched a lot of them not even attempt it. I have broken down every question explained what is required given them examples, marked example questions against the criteria and supplied tonnes of resources for support. I Don’t know how I can support them if they aren’t even trying.

    I apologise for splurging all of my thoughts into this thread!
  2. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    You are there until Christmas. You’ve done your best.

    With the class, this is my advice...... harsh, but nobody in SLT clearly gives a S***. So don’t yourself. Teach those who want to learn. Don’t beat yourself up on the rest.

    Next job, be clear on NQT programme. It’s something you need to nail on at the beginning
  3. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    Avoid long term supply positions and apply for NQT posts - you have more experience so this’ll place you in a different position.
    saluki, JohnJCazorla and agathamorse like this.
  4. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    PM me and I could help with the job statement from the current position. Up to you x
  5. Sanz1981

    Sanz1981 Occasional commenter

    All SLT in schools are awful it seems like. What would they do in real world say ftse 100 company.
  6. molly-pearce

    molly-pearce New commenter

    Thank you for your replies. I start at a new school in January, not as supply and on an nqt program. I just want to be doing the right thing by these kids and for myself as someone new to the profession, I’m scared I’m going to be having to undo bad practice that I have picked up being a lone wolf. I don’t want these kids to do badly but am at a bit of a loss!
  7. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    Fortunately it's to Christmas and no-one seems bothered about progress, so you certainly shouldn't be. How about this for a plan?
    1. Identify the grafters in all your classes, make sure they can work without being distracted by the slackers. Change seating plans, viciously focus all behaviour management on making sure that no slacker can distract a grafter. This is more to make your conscience happier than appeasing any school processes.
    2. Make great efforts to identify and befriend the behaviour team (shouters with radios), similarly anyone nearby who can help with behaviour, study the policy carefully and use it to remove or address anyone who fails the low bar you've set above.
    3. Contingency plans for Christmas
      What if the school wants to keep you on? Identify now the influential people you are going to get cast-iron guarantees from regarding NQT status (and pay rates while you're at it but this will probably be between you and the agency). However you're probably better out of it regardless.
      Similarly with the next school, identify asap these movers and shakers asap and make sure you're a 'proper' NQT from day 1. Agencies won't care about this (money is the only important matter, negotiate pay rates) so it's down to you to make sure what happens in the school.
      EDIT: just read the response above which makes 3 superfluous.
    All the best
  8. install

    install Star commenter

    Leave at Christmas. The school are lucky to have such dedication in the face of such challenge, poor support and lack of appreciation. Look for a more supportive school who appreciates your input :cool:
    molly-pearce, thekillers1 and saluki like this.
  9. Jolly_Roger15

    Jolly_Roger15 Star commenter

    This is a blatant and outrageous piece of side-lining! Your line manager will not engage with you! What sort of message does that give you? Clearly, the school does not give a toss about your classes, or about you! A management stratagem designed to get the best out of you - not!
  10. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    You sound like you are doing a great job and the fact you have had to work things out for yourself is actually a positive. You have achieved your entire first term without killing any of the pupils and with no support or the lower timetable.
    It's only a few more weeks and then you are off to a school with a mentor, reduced timetable and (probably) support. You'll find it a piece of cake!

    Worry not about your current post. You cannot undo the ills of 10 years of disaffection in one term with then a year 11s. Your school will not invest time and money in someone who is leaving in a few weeks, which isn't unreasonable.

    Hang in there, there is a very bright light at the end of this tunnel.
  11. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    Spot on
  12. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    Ah-well done! That makes all the difference to what I'd suggest.
    Are you with an agency then?
    D'you know what I would do in your shoes?
    Leave now. Minimal agency notice.
    Go do something else simpler until January. Make the most of having a job with a start and stop time for a while, a sort of treat for all the xollod you've put up with.
    Why bother doing it at all if you are not enjoying and you don't get any accreditation for it? and also, I'm assuming at your particular stage in your career, you wont be getting much more money than in any old job somewhere else.
    That's what I'd do. Just to get a smile back on my face.
  13. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    Legally, the leaving notice would be 24 hours yet one week is the usual etiquette for long term supply teachers.
  14. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    Actually it quite simply just depends on their contract. Etiquette or some perceived law are not applicable. It will be in their contract, and it's binding because they will have signed it.
    agathamorse likes this.
  15. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    Could even be a month if it’s a temporary contract.
  16. molly-pearce

    molly-pearce New commenter

    Thank you all again for your replies. I am currently at this school through an agency but will be starting my new job in January which is a role I have found by myself not via the agency. Just 4 weeks left I’m going to try to keep fighting through! I more just wanted some reassurance that I’m not crazy and I’m not expecting too much! As I say I am new to this, a new school as an nqt was always going to have challenges but this has been an experience to say the least. Thank you again for the support, it has put me at ease that actually it’s not that I am not an able teacher!
    agathamorse likes this.
  17. jamtart20

    jamtart20 New commenter

    Great news, I've made the mistake of going for long-term roles through agencies and almost nailed on jobs have fallen through. Always down to money!
    agathamorse likes this.
  18. madcatlady

    madcatlady Occasional commenter

    FWIW I would like to wish you the best of luck. It does not sound as though the school you are currently at is offering you the support they should. If you have a job lined up for Jan then you are not obliged to stay there if you are agency.It sounds as though you have done your best in very trying circs. If the current situation is causing you anxiety then I would consider leaving very strongly.

    Hopefully you will be valued in your new position and supported on an NQT programme. Good luck
    agathamorse likes this.

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