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Nottingham City - HUGE TA pay and holiday cuts

Discussion in 'Teaching assistants' started by impulce, Sep 29, 2010.

  1. I too am amazed that some TA's are paid for holidays. I've been working in Cambridgeshire for seven years, where we are only paid for term time plus ( I think it's ) four weeks holiday rising to five after five years. Our pay is purely for the hours we work, not lunchtimes and in some cases not breaktimes. Payments are split into 12 equal payments, but this is only for those who have a permanent contract. Although it probably doesn't help much, you have been very lucky to have been paid for the whole year. I know some TA's are not paid
    Cams TA
     
  2. bluebell27

    bluebell27 New commenter

    Why are people surprised that TAs have a 52 week contract? Possibly because when you took your job on you accepted a term time only contract in the LA that you work in. Notts County Council have generally offered good conditions for TAs where many of us went into the job when 52 weeks was the norm. Okay, I can understand why there would be animosity but surely Unison should have been more proactive with those councils employing TAs on the cheap by slyly introducing term time employment only contracts. If it was an issue of equality (as the argument goes) then it would be fairer to put all TAs on 52 week contracts purely on the basis that we work in schools, we cannot seek benefits when not working (even those not paid for the holidays) and who would employ us for one week in Feb or October??? I wonder if those TAs having pay deducted will have 'equal opportunities' as the rest of Local Authority workers to take their holidays when they wish.( Pigs might fly too!) We could certainly get cheaper holidays in June rather than the school holidays. I am in Nottinghamshire and to date it hasn't filtered down to us yet as we are generally about a year behind Notts City but it will come no doubt. I work in a Voluntary Aided School so our governors may have some say in our pay and conditions which might mean working longer hours and possibly during school hours. I do not have any problem with that personally as there is always work for us to do when school is closed.It was from our head teacher's insistence to governors years ago that ALL staff had 52 week contracts in our primary school and that includes office and lunch time staff too.
     
  3. I am also surprised some TA's have 52 week contracts! We just get paid term time.
     
  4. I have worked as a TA for nearly 9 years and my contract has only ever been for the weeks that I work which is 40 weeks. To be honest I thought thats how it was with all local authorities.
     
  5. It seems I've lucky to have been employed by Notts County Council as our pay is split into 12 equal payments even if the contract is yearly. However if the City get away with changing this perhaps the County will implement it too.
    So, what I'd like to know is this - how do single parents survive on no income for however many weeks, especially if you only work part time? You can't sign on, because you're not "looking for work". If you're not paid then you won't get working tax credit for that period. Does that mean you have to put in a new claim for tax credit after every holiday? It sounds like a financial and administrative nightmare.
    Of course the cuts mean that I'll most likely be out of a job in April anyway, but there must be lots of people out there who're badly affected by this.
     
  6. The East Riding of yorkshire has always done that TAs only get paid term time. It is divided by twelve to make sure we have a wage every month but even so nothing for holidays etc. Dont think it is fair but it has always been the same.
     
  7. I work for the Devon lea , we have only ever been paid for the weeks we work ie term time only, our pay is worked out as a yearly sum then paid to us monthly so we always have a pay day each month. Didnt even know that some TA's in the country are paid for 52 weeks a year.
     
  8. I can only speak for my own Council when I state that my annual salary is divided up equally into 12 and paid monthly. This means that whilst I appear to be 'paid' for holidays (and 'twiddling my thumbs), I have actually worked hard for every penny during the school terms.

    It is not wise or fair to assume that these TAs are not earning their pay the same way.
     
  9. Majority ofTA's in London boroughs have always been on per rata contracts that is we only receive pay for term time. Unfortunately this has a knock on effect with the final pension, as it is classified as being part time workers by the pension schemes. The annual pay is calculated for approximately 34 weeks but this can be extended by lenght of service, as annual leave entitlements are rewarded for service.
    WHAT IS NEEDED IS A STANDARDISED NATIONAL PAY SCALE.
     
  10. What everyone needs to consider is the implications for your pension rights - these will be affected by the change in contracts too.
     
  11. We are paid for 39 weeks of the year. The pay is divided out over 12 months.
     
  12. I live and work in Redcar and Cleveland and I too used to be on full time wages working as a HLTA in a Junior School. Then my school emalgulated into a Primary School. This was 5 years ago. The new Head tore up my contract and rewrote my new one onto 'term time only'! There was nothing I could do about it! She also tried to cut my hours from 37 to 22 so I went to the unions and the Governors. The unions didn't want to know! I managed to keep my hours but they said it was up to the heads discretion to whether I continued to keep my full time status - there was no chance! I lost over £4000 AND IT MESSED UP MY PENSION! I have been in the job under one title or another for the last 20 years and I feel very bitter especially when I hear others are still on full time - Good luck to all of you still fighting you are going to need it!
     
  13. I don't have the time to read all the replies to this post so I'm sorry if someone has already made the point I'm about to make:
    I have contracted hours per week over a calander year which covers just over 45 weeks a year, so it works out that I don't get paid for summer holidays, and a bit more. I have my salary averaged over 52 weeks so I get a pay cheque every month.

     
  14. In the Manchester, Tameside and Oldham areas, I have rarely seen a job advertised for a TA that is not term time only. I work 35 hours a week but only for 39 weeks of the year.
     
  15. bluebell27

    bluebell27 New commenter

    That is a shame that you should feel so bitter that others are still on the 52 week contract (for now anyway) As you will recall many years ago when we applied for jobs in school we were automatically offered the same terms as teachers regarding the 52 week contracts. Since then there has been an influx of TA's employed and somewhere along the line 'some' local authorities decided to downgrade the role and only offer term time only contracts.Consequently, Tas employed on those terms will ONLY be familiar with those conditions and would have accepted a job on those terms. However, some LAs such as Nottinghamshire/Nottingham (and others) valued the role of support staff and honoured the contracts we accepted many years ago. Since the Job Evaluation came into being there have been many changes and not necessarily for the better . Whilst I agree there should be some consistency in the role of TAs pay and conditions and gradings Unions should be fighting for 52 week contracts. I have read many bulletins of Unison which stipulates this but they are not forthcoming when it comes down to the nitty gritty of things..( despite what anyone may argue you live by your means and to suddenly have £3-4000 whipped away when you rely desperately on your wage must be so demoralising) To be honest if that should happen to me then I shall seriously look at moving out of the TA role once I have my degree next year and look for alternative work.
    Thankfully, I work in a Voluntary Aided School where governors set our pay and employment conditions so there are some options open to them to alleviate the financial pressure our Tas will suffer from. It's an option my head teacher is looking at. Alternatively they can decide that we all stay on 52 week contracts even if it means going into school during some of the school holidays. I know one local school who have just gone though the re-grading system but have now become an academic school, The head teacher is keeping all TAs on 52 week contracts as they are no longer under LA contracts. I can only see things getting progressively worse with lots of TA jobs being cut.[​IMG]
     
  16. Ophelia 9

    Ophelia 9 New commenter

    Unfortunately, bluebell, neither Unison, nor either of the other two unions who officially represent school support staff only represent this group of workers and from the point of view of their other members (and Unison have far more of these than they have TAs) it just doesn't seem fair that TAs get paid for more weeks than they actually work! If you think about it would you be happy for a TA who works fewer hours than you to be paid the same amount? We used to have a TA who also worked as a LTS but her TA hours finished half an hour before lunchtime began - by the same token as some TAs argue that they can't get any other jobs in the time they are not paid, she could justifiably have claimed that, as she couldn't do anything except stay in school for that half-an-hour, that she should be paid and extra 2 and a half hours per week!
    I would very much like to leave education but I cannot get a job which pays as much as I earn term-time-only even though it entails working all-year-round! I do appreciate that I am fortunate in being paid appropriately for an HLTA role and didn't end up losing any money through single Status (though it seemed at one point that I might lose £7000 per year) but I can see why someone earning less than me already would be extremely unhappy if my salary then rose even higher!
    Sadly, I think you are right in fearing that TA jobs are going to be lost over the next few years - and I also fear that many who will stay will be those less qualified and experienced - because schools are probably going to be allowed to set their own pay and terms for support staff and will keep those who will do anything they are asked and work for the lowest wages.
     
  17. bluebell27

    bluebell27 New commenter

    I agree with what you say Ophelia. Just having a moan! I'm looking at doing a 'professional 'play therapy course recognised by the NSPCC after my degree so might look at what the potential job market is like in that area. I can't complain really as I am also paid at HLTA rate even though I do not have the status. My level 4 E111 certificate from the OU has been recognised by my boss so when completing the re-grading forms that is where he put me and it has been accepted. It didn't give me any more money but stopped me from going back down the grading system and just keeps me where I am which is all I wanted. I do have a 'responsibility' for training student TAs and for ICT which justifies my level 4 position.
    I suppose we just have to get used to all the changes. I shall then suggest that I take my annual holiday in June just like all other public sector workers can choose so that I can afford a holiday abroad.[​IMG]
     

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