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Moving onto UPS

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by emz345, Jul 4, 2020.

  1. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    My one-year contract at my current school - where I am on M6 - will come to an end soon. Thankfully I've secured a permanent position at another school, starting in September - where I'll also be on M6. Both schools are in the same county and the new school is part of an Academy.

    I really want to progress onto the UPS next year (Sept 2021) but haven't been given much guidance by my current school (not surprising really with everything else going on at the moment!) I have had great appraisal reviews in the past and I've proved myself to be a highly effective teacher. I know I have to apply for threshold assessment by a certain date, perhaps before Christmas, so I want to make sure I'm doing everything necessary to prepare for this.

    During my interview with the new school, I expressed an interest in helping the school achieve an Eco-Schools award and they were really enthusiastic about this. I wondered if this is the sort of whole-school contribution that employers are looking for when accepting a UPS application?

    Any advice or recommendations would be much appreciated :)
  2. diddydave

    diddydave Established commenter

    The NEU has a page on this which is quite useful: https://neu.org.uk/advice/threshold-progression-and-upper-pay-range

    I would advise you to get hold of your new school's pay policy as that should have detail that may help you focus your contributions to meet both the school's needs and help in your application.

    From the NEU page:

    "The criteria you must meet before moving onto the UPR are:
    • that you are highly competent in all elements of the relevant standards; and
    • that your achievements and contribution to the school are substantial and sustained."
    Certainly if you go above and beyond what is normal for a classroom teacher then you stand a better chance of ticking off the 2nd of these but I would also point out that the UPS is not (or should not be) about doing extras beyond your classroom responsibilities because that is what the TLR payments are set up to recompense people for.
  3. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    Thank you so much for your quick reply - that's really helpful to know. I will ask the new school for their pay policy and go from there.
  4. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Just to add, the actual requirements are in STPCD (if the school is using STPCD conditions of employment) and make clear that the school's Pay Policy should explain in more detail how the criteria will be applied in your school.


    Attached Files:

    diddydave likes this.
  5. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    Ok, thank you. I hope the school's Pay Policy follows clause 15.3 in the STPCD !
  6. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Anecdotally, according to previous threads on here, some school's Pay Policies are very skimpy and do not give the clear description of how UPR decisons will be made that STPCD says they should. So don't be too surprised if the Pay Policy is less than enlightening. Then all you can do is talk to your line manager &/or SLT to find out what happens in your new school. Asking your new colleagues and your new union rep should give you the heads up as well.
    Piranha likes this.
  7. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    Ok. Thank you! I will make sure I do those things.

    It certainly feels like schools are unforthcoming with information to help teachers earn the money they deserve!

    If my UPS application is successful, I will definitely help other teachers make the step too. Things like this are so important for the retention of the best teachers.
  8. ladams091988

    ladams091988 New commenter

    I went through Threshold 2 years ago. I teach year 6 and was refused on 2 occasions due to not having 2 consecutive years of at or above National KS2 results in SAT's. On one year I had above but on the following year I didn't which was very frustrating so don't feel too disheartened if at first you don't succeed. Keep applying one year after the next - don't give in!
    Please check your schools pay policy. Every school is different.
    I have attached an example of the type of application I had to complete. Although every school is different and it might mean your school expects something different. I had to add quite a lot of information and it was returned once as unsuccessful before being accepted after a second attempt.
    I am the Literacy, PE, Computing and DT coordinator in a small school but still found it very difficult to be accepted for UPS.
    Unfortunately, on many occasions, it all seems to come down to budgets and money.
    Good luck - I hope you are successful!

    Attached Files:

    emz345 likes this.
  9. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience and thank you for the encouragement! I will heed your advice and persevere whatever happens. :)
  10. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    Hi All,

    I'm not sure if anyone will see this, since the thread is now a few weeks old... but I'll try my luck.

    I managed to get the Pay Policy from my new school before the end of term (although it's dated 2018/19). It seems like a reasonable policy with everything outlined quite clearly, so I am currently collating my evidence for all the UPS criteria that is outlined.

    My only sticking point is where it says:

    "Demonstrates an understanding of how their role will change on a day to day basis if successful in achieving threshold status".

    Is this something I need to ask the school about, or is it widely accepted that a post-threshold teacher will need to contribute more to the school than they are already doing at M6? If so, what might be a good way to convince the school that I fulfil the criteria? (Like I previously mentioned, I am very interested in helping the school achieve Eco-School status but I don't want to take on too much too soon in a new school...)

    Sorry for my naivety but I'd really appreciate clarification :)

    Thank you!
  11. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Not at all naïve, but this is not a standard part of STPCD. My suspicion is that the school is expecting you to "volunteer" for something extra. in order to go onto the UPR. You say "my role will change by xxx" and succeed. They then make sure you get to do xxx . That is just my guess, though, but I think it would be wise not to say more than you are prepared to do.

    This is not my idea of how it should work, but I am afraid that schools do use UPR to get extra work done. Originally, the UPS rewarded experienced classroom teachers.
  12. emz345

    emz345 New commenter

    I think that is very wise advice. I don't want to shoot myself in the foot! Thank you, Piranha for your super-speedy reply.

    I really want to nail this threshold assessment and then help out other M6 teachers in the future, if I can.
    Piranha likes this.

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