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One year contract

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by blackberryblossom, Aug 15, 2019.

  1. blackberryblossom

    blackberryblossom New commenter

    I have a one year contract, ending in December. This was offered (rather than a permanent position) due to a very basic reference from my last HT - just confirming dates worked and no safeguarding issues. I saw the year as an opportunity to prove myself, but it seems I haven’t done so because the HT hasn’t offered me a permanent contract. Any words of advice/encouragement?
    Please be kind, my confidence is at a low. Thanks in advance.
  2. SundaeTrifle

    SundaeTrifle Occasional commenter

    Sadly this has happened to me. I was working on supply and applied for a job advertised as permanent part-way through the autumn term. After the interviews, there were about 5 or 6 candidates, I was called back in and offered the job on a temp contract. I had to make an instant decision and accepted, even though my gut instinct was to walk. I accepted hoping to become permanent, I gave all I could, but the school advertised externally. I was told I would be automatically selected for interview, but I didn’t have the confidence to apply, as if I hadn’t got the job I would have felt shattered. I felt as if I had already been on a six month interview.

    Karma. I went onto much better work places afterwards, the person they appointed left after a term and they always struggled to recruit maths teachers.
  3. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Firstly, it's possible that they will advertise again to see what's out there, but might be quite willing to consider you if nobody demonstrably better turns up. It's interesting that they made it a year rather than two terms, as it now means a midyear changeover, which will reduce the field of applicants. Of course it might be that they have someone in mind for a January start. Alternatively, maybe there's someone who wants to increase their hours, so they're looking at appointing a part-timer instead of a full-timer.
    I can see SundaeTrifle's point, but if you like working there and there haven't been any negatives expressed, it's worth applying if the post is advertised for January.

    And meantime, "it seems I haven't done so because" suggests that there hasn't been any complaint about your work. Maybe it is just change of circumstances within the school, or just a "face doesn't quite fit", and you'll have a good reference with which to apply to other schools.
    blackberryblossom likes this.
  4. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    There are all sorts of reasons why a Head may not yet have offered you either a longer or permanent contract. For starters we're only 2/3 of the way through the calendar year. Perhaps your head just wants a bit more time before offering a longer contract. Perhaps they were wrapped up in September planning.
    I would start positively and think about booking a chat with the head if nothing has been said in the first couple of weeks.
    Good luck.
    blackberryblossom likes this.
  5. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    The head probably hasn't got round to doing anything about it yet. You may be jumping to conclusions.
  6. starlightexpress

    starlightexpress Occasional commenter

    It could just be that the HT will notify of the selection process for the permanent role ahead of October 31st- likely looking to this in September to get adverts out. If you apply and are successful, the fixed term role contract will end and a new permanent contract will commence. Either way the fixed term role will formally end. Notice for ending of the fixed term role need only be given by October 31st.

    In light of this, have a chat when you’re back, citing that you’ll wish to apply for permanent role, if advertised, and that you’d appreciate notice if role is not going to advert to be able to apply elsewhere to get a 1st January role. You can share the ‘ideally I’d love to stay here’ bit! Do the ‘is it ok to put you down as a referee’ request also.
  7. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

    The HT may not be allowed to offer you the job without advertising it . This may be simply a case of the protocols that the HT is required to follow. Did that occur to you?

    Not all HT are villians you know, (but the job does attract psychos).

    The HT might think you are doing a brill job but s/ he doesn't want to tip their hand and weaken any negotiating stance that may be required.

    The HT has a different job to you, a very different job.

    Go and ask to see the HT asap, tell him/her that you want to continue to work there. The HT might appreciate a kind word or two as well you know.

    Brush up your CV, you'll still need it...eventually.
    phlogiston and blackberryblossom like this.
  8. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    The advice above is pretty clear - seek a time to go to your HT as soon as possible after the start of term, say that you enjoy the job and hope to remain at the school (& maybe remind them of one or two things you've achieved over the year), but if not you need to start looking for another post ASAP as there usually aren't many posts being advertised for a January start and you need to be working as soon as your current contract finishes. Say something like 'I trust I can rely on your support should I need to apply for another post in the near future...' which will allow you to make applications as soon as any jobs get advertised.

    If the HT knows you won't just be sitting around, allowing your contract to run down, they may be propelled to making an earlier decision about your contract. In my experience HTs respond better to firmness and it is 100% reasonable that you ask about the Ht's plans for you ASAP.
  9. blackberryblossom

    blackberryblossom New commenter

    Thanks very much for the advice from all who have responded. It is greatly appreciated.
    afterdark likes this.
  10. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    I like what Frank Woolley has advised.

    You may not have done anything wrong on your “6 month interview”
    When I was on a temporary contract, the governors wanted all temps to have an interview... along with outside applicants. Current teachers were automatically interviewed. I had a TLR, had great results, great observation feedback but... I was replaced by an NQT!

    You may not have heard due to budgets... (unlikely as they start either April (LEA) or September (academies))
    I have been given a temporary contract (a permanent one was advertised)- it was a leadership post but not renewed due to cost... they did find at the last minute they could afford for an NQT to replace me :eek:

    (2 other jobs I have left, I have been replaced by NQTs... seems like there’s an anecdotal pattern appearing)

    Check your contract- it might be clear that there is no guarantee of a job leading on from this- mine was really clear. That means, they wouldn’t even need to talk to you before your last day in December!!!!!!

    Personally, unless I heard that my job is mine, I would apply for another job for January/try supply (poor pay though) if one doesn’t appear. I have seen too many people (me included) left distraught at having to find they need to reapply for the jobs they are doing well in only to be replaced (by an NQT).

    Or... you may find your head has had other things to think about and you need to have a conversation although... it is the summer holidays!

    Could you email (if they are a head who is mad at communication in the holidays) to say you’re just planning the next academic year but realise you need to get sorted from January onwards? Even if they don’t pick it up until the end of the month, it might just allow you to enjoy what’s left of the holiday.

    In conclusion, if your confidence is at an all time low, do you really want to stay? If they “don’t want you”, it’s more likely they don’t want to pay you (whatever your pay scale) so please hold your head up, know that you’re doing a good job. Good luck, keep us updated on how things go!
  11. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    It seems likely to me that this will move onto the Head's radar once we are well into next term. It is quite possible that you will be offered a permanent contract before the resignation deadline. Assuming that the job will still exist, the school will need to advertise fairly early in the term if they do want to replace you. As has been advised, your best option might be to ask.

    However, keep an eye on the job adverts and be prepared to apply for anything you like. That might focus the Head's mind. When Ii was qualifying via the GTP, I had a one year contract. I managed to get a couple of interviews. The day before the first one, I was summoned by the Head and offered a permanent job.
  12. SparkMaths

    SparkMaths Occasional commenter

    I don't think accepting one year contracts is a good idea if you are looking to be made permanent.

    They are going to have to make you interview for your own job for legal/policy reasons and if the school is ethical/professional they will take the external candidates seriously.

    I've accepted these contracts twice and both times I had to interview for my own job, the first had the interviews on the same day as parents evening and the second was in the middle of me moving house. Both disasters for various reasons.

    If I was you I'd start looking for a new job right away and make sure that you are in control of what happens. If you really like the school after your HoD about it.
  13. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    Get applying for permanent contracts elsewhere, that might force their hand.
  14. blackberryblossom

    blackberryblossom New commenter

    I really like the school, but will have to look for similar roles elsewhere because I need to be employed in January - in my current or a different school. I will know one way or the other by October half term.

    I would feel better if I knew this was due to protocols and not just school seeing if there’s anyone better/cheaper out there.

    I suppose job ads for January will start to be advertised soon - I keep looking, but there are only agencies advertising in the holidays.
  15. starlightexpress

    starlightexpress Occasional commenter

    It will be due to protocols. All jobs should be advertised. This may be able to be internal. If it is external, then you’ll need to demonstrate you’re the strongest candidate. Remember, you have the advantage of knowing the school and the role. You are also ‘known’- if you’re as good as another candidate, then you’re less risky than an ‘unknown’.

    Either way, get your personal statement ready for application for this role and others you might apply for. For January start, they’ll need to get the process done ahead of the October 31st resignation date.

    As advised by a few of us here, have that chat with your HT when you get back. They’ll be able to indicate where it’s at- full external process, internal process or other (might be able to do a contract variation as you have been through a selection process- depends on HR view). You’ll know if it’s an open process or one ‘going through the motions/ protocol’ from the conversation. The HT won’t indicate the role is yours, if it’s an open process. If it’s aimed to be your role, then the HT will likely get the process completed sooner rather than later to keep you from looking elsewhere. If you have the chat as soon as we’re back to school, then you’ll know where you are- quick process, applying for just this one or applying for a range.
    blackberryblossom likes this.
  16. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    FWIW It was far from the case that all jobs have to be advertised - promoted posts (HoY, HoD perhaps), but certainly not classroom teachers. When I was in SLT I was responsible for appointing staff, and on occasions (esp. near resignation dates) that happened very quickly, with no time for adverts.
  17. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Some people seem to be assuming that the OP is definitely not going to be offered a permanent post without the job being advertised, but it is not obvious to me that this is the case - it might just be that the Head has not got around to doing anything yet. Can the OP clarify, please? I had a colleague in a similar position who was offered a permanent role; indeed, I suggested to SMT that they make the role permanent quickly in case he got snapped up by another school and, to my surprise, they did.

    Even it is the usual protocol for all jobs to be advertised, it is quite possible that this can be varied when a candidate is given a temporary job instead of the advertised permanent one because of concerns about something.

    @FrankWolley is correct that not all jobs need to be advertised, and this includes promotions. Although I think it better that promotions are advertised internally even if it appears that only one person is qualified for the role. For a classroom teacher role, it is taking a risk to appoint somebody else based on a lesson and interviews when you know that there is an entirely suitable candidate already working for you. Saves quite a lot of time and money too!
    strawbs likes this.
  18. starlightexpress

    starlightexpress Occasional commenter

    Hopefully for OP they’ll be viewed as one to ensure they keep and they progress the contract from temporary to permanent in the most straightforward way. If HT wants it, HR will advise on the approach to make it happen. As OP has been through a selection process based on a permanent role advert, it could just be a contract variation- using previous process. This will also save time and money, as stated above! If OP has that conversation with HT, he/she will know exactly where it’s at.
  19. blackberryblossom

    blackberryblossom New commenter

    Headteacher hasn’t said anything about internal or external interviews as yet.
  20. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Has the Head said that there will be interviews, or just not said anything at all yet? If the latter, you may well find that the job is yours! I hope so.

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