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On MP6 for several years (and not inspired to 'move upwards'). Advice?

Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by lou5357, Nov 21, 2015.

  1. lou5357

    lou5357 New commenter

    Dear all,

    I've been working at the same school for over three years (on long term supply), but have not yet gone over to contract despite being offered one two years ago. (It's complex! In short, I dithered for quite a while, and then waited 9 months to get cleared on a CRB). I have been teaching for 12 years and this is a lovely school - indeed, the best I have ever worked in.)
    I have spoken to my regional union officer who has advised me to 'sign' before we move over to an academy (next Easter), otherwise expect a huge pay cut. )-: I subsequently spoke to the head about this and she told me that I will not get a cut in pay when we become an academy.

    The thing is, I like the way things are. I'm very nervous about going onto contract because what I do, I do because I want to, not because I have to, and for this reason I have not (historically) been interested in going onto contract or moving up the pay scale. In short, I can't see any benefit to me moving onto a permanent contract at the moment.

    I would be more inclined to sign a contract if I could further my own CPD - if the school would would agree - but I don't know what's available these days. I was, for example, quite interested in doing an AST course, but it's no longer available.

    Quite frankly, I don't know what to do with myself. I don't want to be a HOD or a head of KS, so I am at a loss of where to go from here.

    Any advice welcomed.
  2. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    You want a worth while pension
    Even with the changes?

    Go permanent unless you have had a five year break from the TP scheme. This may break a final salary link you may already have. Talk to Teachers Pensions about this to see if it applies to you.

    This I believe would be called a critical service break and depends not only on how long but when you had it.

    Permanent staff may well keep their current conditions in the move to an academy. This is called TUPE. Sign now if your going to. Conditions could be worse if you sign after you are an academy.

    Don't believe a Head about your pay not changing after conversion. They can change their mind, retire or be disappeared.
    snowyhead likes this.
  3. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Yes, I would consider that signing a permanent contract now has two advantages

    1) TUPE protection when academised

    2) Salary level protection. Now there are no national salary scales, your current salary is only protected while you are employed in the same school. Your contract comes to an end, they are perfectly within their rights to offer your next contract at the bottom of the pay range. i.e. what used to be called M1.

    I can see no advantages to staying on your current supply contract, except perhaps the option to walk out at little notice.

    No more Pay Portability, no more pay scale, no more automatic moving up the scale.

    Best wishes

    Yoda- likes this.
  4. lou5357

    lou5357 New commenter

    Many thanks for the replies. Yes, I see the logic in terms of pay protection. I think, because of the impending change to academy status, (and fear of the unknown that change could bring), I will find it more settling if I can at least see where my own progression is going, i.e. what form it will take, so that I have something to strive towards.
  5. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    I really don't understand, especially considering you like the school, why you have never signed a contract? There seems no benefit to you at all?
  6. lou5357

    lou5357 New commenter

    It must seem like I'm utterly bonkers; I guess being on long term supply has acted like a comfort blanket of sorts - the knowledge that if anything ever took a turn for the worse, I could leave fairly quickly. (A change such as being part of a big, well-known academy for example).
    At a practical level, even the switch to being paid monthly feels like a drastic and worrying change.
    Thinking about it, (and I'm just thinking aloud here), it could be that I am worried that once I go onto contract, I will have nothing new to 'bring to the table' as it were. My Head is great and very supportive. She's aware that I am a big bag of insecurity (but not as to the reasons why because I am not sure myself), and has a lot of faith in my abilities, but I worry that I might just don't have any more to give that's 'inspirational'.
    Rightly or wrongly, I have it firmly in my head that once on contract, expectations of me will soar. In short, I worry about messing up.
  7. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    @GLsghost might confirm this, but I have feeling that if you have worked for the same employer for more than four years without a break (?) your contract is deemed to be permanent anyway in terms of employment rights. Are you fairly near the four year mark?

    Other posters are recommending you move to a contract and this is very sound advice given the impending academisation.

    Don't be in a rush to move from M6 (what was) to UPS I have noticed that many advertisements for teaching posts are favouring main scale (what was) teachers because they are cheaper. It's seems to be all about squeezing as much out of the salaries budget as you can at the moment.
  8. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    Lets be honest. Even on a permanent contract you are hardly signing your life away. You can hand in your notice a go within 6-7 months at most normally.

    I don't think that matters. They are obviously happy with you to have kept you so long. I say this because many would have told you to sign up or sign out before now! The insecurity works on both sides for me.

    Like before, you don't have to do anything more than what you are doing now. It is clear enough that they like you. If you have been there for 3 years then you are already working to the expectations every day.

    If you hang around long enough on here, you can sometimes lose faith in the profession. Your case shows that the majority of schools (i still think) are run fairly and well with decent headteachers. You are in one of these. Don't talk yourself out of working in a place you like.
  9. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    It's about 3 months for a non-leadership post - give or take adjustments for Easter holidays etc.
  10. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    Yes, @snowyhead.

    I found this good explanation of the relative rights of Fixed-term employees on Shoosmiths' website (no point reinventing the wheel!) which explains it all.
  11. lou5357

    lou5357 New commenter

    You have raised some good points, Snowy. SLT have treated me like a permanent member of staff for at least the last two years: this has been a two - way 'unofficial' agreement: I comply with directed time, attend all school CPD sessions and offer (unpaid) GCSE revision classes during half-term in the run up to exams. In return, the school have paid for any CPD sessions outside of school that I have asked for and the occasional sickness ( less than 5 days in the last 3 years). Lol! I am certainly not in any hurry to move up the 'invisible' UPS scale: having looked at UPS 1, it's all stuff that I have been doing over the last couple of years anyway, but the difference is that these are things that I have wanted to do, and have done under my own steam, rather than doing a 'tick box' exercise because it is a formal expectation. The latter, I feel, would create an added layer of stress that I just don't need in my life. Many thanks just for that point alone.
  12. lou5357

    lou5357 New commenter

    Dynamo: everything that you have said is logical, succinct and correct. I find it fascinating (and strangely comforting) that you were also able to make inference on the 'If you hang around long enough on here...' point, and you are quite right. I read some posts on here and quite often feel horrified by what I have read in terms of the shenanigans played out by SLT in some schools, especially in academies.
    Returning to my original post, I would really value some ideas about personal progression, as I feel stuck! I don't want to be a HOD at the moment, (too much responsibility, and for too little pay) even if there was an opening, and the head of KS (pastoral care at that level) is not something that interests me. Rather, my interests lie in delivering good to outstanding lessons to other teachers, long term mapping and interpreting whole school data with a view to improving results.
    In short, I have been teaching for about 12 years; I started off as a subject teacher, and I'm still a subject teacher. Colleagues, past and present, are doing great things and getting formal recognition for what they are doing. I'm still where I was ten years ago in that respect. I want to develop myself professionally, and I just don't know where to go from here. I don't want to sign 'on the dotted line' and then not show any personal progression. I understand that I may not have to, but I feel a need to do so. Does that make sense?
    midnight_angel and DYNAMO67 like this.
  13. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    In the main, yes. Was looking at a worst case scenario of handing in your notice on June 1st or something like that

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