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Only teacher of Psychology

Discussion in 'Social sciences' started by pati, Nov 8, 2005.

  1. Hello,
    I am an NQT and the only teacher of Psychology at an 11-18 grammar school. Last year students learnt via distance learning. So I have had to set up a depart with no other suject teacher, I do have a nominal head of dep (Deputy Head), who does nothing. I've been told that I cannot be given any TLR consideration because I am not responsible for other teaching staff - can this be right?

  2. Hello,
    I am an NQT and the only teacher of Psychology at an 11-18 grammar school. Last year students learnt via distance learning. So I have had to set up a depart with no other suject teacher, I do have a nominal head of dep (Deputy Head), who does nothing. I've been told that I cannot be given any TLR consideration because I am not responsible for other teaching staff - can this be right?

  3. having responsibility for staff is one of the criteria i believe - not sure how inflexible that is - I presume you are in a union, hopefully with NUT who have opposed this structure, so check with rep on that and ask them to challenge this for you.....and DO NOT do ANY work that is outwith the remit of an ordinary classroom teacher .....you should not be being required to do any HOD duties anyway in your NQT year! - in a sense, a lot of people have been in this sort of position over the years as psychology has developed, lots of people in single person or very small depts, or setting things up from scratch - and up until now heads have had the means and discretion to pay people with a Management point or other sweetener for doing the duties of a HOD even if you were the only subject teacher - this is one of the problems with the new TLR's - they do not take account of this sort of situation, even where it is a developing subject and many of us know just how much work that means over and above the duties of a classroom teacher! BUT we can and must fight it through the unions - and for every one of us who challenges this, the more chance there is of achieving a more fair and equitable system. Of course you have responsibilities related to teaching and learning - you have the responsibility for all the development, resourcing,planning delivery, managing progress and improving attainment etc etc etc for a discrete subject area!
    I do urge you to make it clear that you will challenge this - you will not be alone believe me - to seek urgent support from the union rep either in school or at the area or regional rep, and to not do anything that would be in a hod job description and not in a an ordinary classroom teachers description. If the line manager wants the money then make them do the work.
    we have to be a bit tough here or our terms and conditions will be the worse in the UK and most of western europe!
    I know it is hard to do this sort of thing esp as a NQT - but you have , hopefully,a long career ahead of you and the way things are going we have to toughen up or we will find ourselves regretting it for many years to come.
    If you are an ATP member you may want to contact them - or join if you are not , see the website - as there must be lots of people in your situation and they may be able to help.
  4. I'm in the same boat, a single subject teacher in a school with no TLR point for being de facto head of department. When I asked, I was told that I was no different from any other classroom teacher as all teachers need to plan and mark their own work!!!! I'm raising this with the NAS/UWT.

  5. I run a department in similar circumstances - set the dept up from scratch and hold the budget and responsibility for all resourcing and teaching etc.

    I dont get any TLR points either. I dont expect any. To boot I do it part time. I do get two ( paid) free periods a week though. I have a nominal HoD who keeps his nose totally out of my job and my dept work and I like it that way. He's an OKbloke but I dont need him to tell me how to operate my budget or resources.

    It is likely next year that I will be a dept all on my own - but still with no staff and do not envisage any change in employment terms ( or pay)

    I have never had any post where the circumstances have been different. I once ran a dept as an "unqualified " teacher ( because I was from FE and FE trained) - for about the same dosh as you get as an NQT. I was designated the HoD of that dept as well.

    Now I am paid properly on mainscale but thats all.

    I dont think there is anything wrong with that.

    I do think though, that as an NQT you are being given considerable responsibility.

    You must have known the situation when you took the job surely? So I cannot see any grounds for complaint here.
    Its pretty usual.
  6. sorry i have to disagree. developing a subject and having all curricular responsibility, is NOT what any other classroom teacher does and it should attract some financial recognition in ALL cases - otherwise you are being paid the same rate as say a teacher of french who has no formal responsibilites other than to plan teach and mark his or her own lessons and who has a HOD or 2nd in dept who is paid extra to do all the other thing that you are doing! Fair pay for the job being done is what this is about - not about what you can or can't do or how you like things etc etc.
  7. sorry - as i said elsewhere- to argue that becuase something is ' usual' or accepted practice is a very poor argument - it does not mean something is acceptable, desirable or should be put up with - in fact it more often means that someone is getting a raw deal and it should be challenged!
  8. I am sorry Celtick we are going to have to disagree on this one.

    By your argument there should be no pay scale for experience. NQT's and "unqualified" teachers ( such as I was) get paid far less than I do now for being a classroom teacher.

    The job they do is no different to that done by an ordinary classroom teacher with fifteen years experience - so why should I get more than an NQT ? Why should you get more than an NQT for having stuck at it for a few years?

    By the same token, there isnt a great deal more to running a one person dept than there is to running yourself as an ordinary classroom teacher I am afraid to say. Any half decent classroom teacher will produce a SoW and be able to deal with their photocopying needs ( from the amount designated to them by their HoD and order books ( via the HoD) and make up their own worksheets etc.

    Further, as an experienced teacher who because of my position on mainscale has in the past found myself priced out of the market, I would happily get paid a flat rate for the job if it meant I could compete on equal terms with an NQT for a post.

    Now that may up the amount an NQT gets but it would certainly push my pay down - but that is market forces.

    There is more to this than just being paid according to some perceived scale of responsibility.

    Its a balancing act between pressing for enough pay for the job and making sure you dont ask for so much they find someone cheaper ( HTLA's, TA's, FE teachers who dont have QTS, BUT CAN DO THE JOB AND ARE QUALIFIED!!!!).

    I have no problem with everyone being paid the same rate for the job - but I do think on that policy we will all get down rated.
    I think too often whinges like this are just about money, not anything to do with the job.
  9. so - who does the dept development plan, fills in forms for SEF etc, attends meetings at which HODS or teachers in charge of a subject area are expected, produced promotional material, attends to exam setting, has responsibility for purchasing and budget, deals with parental and discipline issues,deals with correspondence, organises the now nightmare of any trips or visits, liases with other local providers, runs open evenings or taster sessions, writes material for the handbook, refers to SENCO, writes reports for UCAS or references, collates and analyses data,deals with exam entries ( yeah yeah we're not supposed to but we still have to) - and believe me there are MANY ordinary teachers out there who will NOT write a SOW becuase ' that's the HOD's job'....... . So - some people are expected to do X, but HODs get paid extra for doing X, so therefore others expected to do the same should be paid x as well.
    IF this persons line manager did it all - fab- they get paid more for having that responsibility - but in this case the line manager is NOT doing it........and the poor single person dept teacher is carrying THEIR load.....that is not right.

    Yes, there is a bigger picture - but paying at least the lowest TLR to people in this position would be entirely possible and fair. Whether any NQT should have to deal with these matters is another story - in most cases I would say no they should not but in subject areas where single person depts still fairly common I can see that it will happen - so if anyone is asked to do more than their job description states, on a regular basis - they should be paid as such - and you know, there is nothing wrong about it being ' about money' - I don't see any HODS of bigger depts saying ' hey it's ok I'll just do it for love'! No no they all want their management money. why should we be any different.
  10. I dont know celtick. I obviously seem to come from a different generation of teaching ( as well as a different sector). ALL of the things you cite above have ALWAYS been part of what I have done as an "ordinary" teacher. Thats what the job is.

    I was also taught to do them when I did my FE teaching certificate. As far as I am aware, we still teach it on FE teaching courses.

    Maybe things have changed since my day ( yeah , OK, I'll get me zimmer frame and retire and let all the youngsters not so trained do extra courses for extra dosh to be called HoD's do it! Except it doesnt work like that).

    All I do more than a classroom teacher ( when I was first time classroom teacher) is run a budget. All the other things you state were always part of my job.

    By the way what HoD meetings? Our schhol has one once a year!

    agree that maybe an NQT hould not be doing this job ( the one I do) but when I started out SOW and lesson plans were your own responsibility. Perhaps we have too much reliance on teaching by numbers and pulling courses out of folders now. Its a de skilling of teachers - but then we all know that any criterian , tick the boxes approach to training ( as per modern teaching courses) will deskill.

  11. barrie yes, things have changed - like you , when i trained we were expected to produce a lot more for ourselves than is now in the job description. however that is irrelevant really - it is how things are NOW that matters in this case i.e. in determining parity in pay.
    btw any school I have worked in has HOD meetings at least once a month!
    and most of the tasks i listed are NOT done by classroom teachers - or at least not required of them -in schools - they are in hOD job descriptions and tho some hods might delegate some of these or do them as joint tasks ultimately it will be the hod who has the responsibility and that is why they get paid more.
  12. blt

    blt New commenter

    I think it's a bit naughty of a school to employ an NQT as a kind of "Teacher In charge" which is what appears to be the case here. Whenever I've seen a job like that it used to have one additional point (old system) in recognition of the fact that you were expected to do more than the average classroom teacher but less than a HoD who has a number of staff to manage too.

    As for producing promotional materials, SoW etc etc these aren't really the job of an 'ordinary' teacher. I do help out with things like that but have found that you usually end up with a load of worked dumped on you by your HoD who is, at the end of the day, getting paid a lot more than you! I've only just learnt to say 'no' now and my classroom practice is better for it! Time to plan, mark and produce materials for lessons. That's the teacher's job. I'm with you celticchick on this one
  13. Its funny but whenever I mention things not being in my job description I am always pointed in the direction of the paragraph that says "and all other duties..... that from time to time might be requested".

    The issue of promo materials is a difficult onesince I guess most schoolies are not geared into the thr "R"'s of FE - recruitment, retention and results.

    Most school teachers have captive audiences. Having always worked in FE I am aware that I have to produce materials , attend open evenings for fifth form options etc because the students have to be recruited and I am in competition with others for their choices.

    No class = no job. Its that simple. Hence if you have sense you promote your department. If you are the only teacher of that subject no one else will do it for you.
  14. blt

    blt New commenter

    Ha! A captive audience? I wish! Schools have to recruit as well! At the school that I teach in we make sure that we advertise all the local colleges and sixth forms etcf so that students can make informed choices about which courses they want to study on. Fair enough many do look elsewhere and decide to stay put because they prefer toe notion of an 11-18 school than an FE college (we do recruit quite heavily from other schools in the area). I really don't think any of us have the 'captive audience' anymore!
  15. believe me anyone who works in a school with a 6th form will hear plenty about RRR!!!
    in any case - you still seem to be missing the point which is about PARITY! if x gets paid extra for having certain responsibilities and task - so should y. That is why there is a scale of Ma/TLR alllowances - becuase obviously being HOD of a 6 person dept which teaches well nigh every child in the school is a greater responsibility and makes (arguably) greater demands than HOD of a dept that only teaches a proportion of the students ( tho of course in bigger depts you can delegate more and may have a 2ic ). I don't understand why you seem so set against us having equal recognition for what we do.......there is no point in comparing with FE who as we are well aware have entirely different terms and conditions anyway - have to complare like with like. Yes, many teachers who are unpromoted do loads more than they technically have to, I know I have, you have and so on -but if we chose NOT to, no-one could make us, and increasingly, no doubt because of the general disenchantment of the profession with govt and school policies, attitudes and so on, non-promoted staff DO say no. Nor do I blame them.But if they want me to do HOD duties they will pay me as such - seems fair to me.
  16. But that is my pont Celtick, there is NO PARITY in schools ( leave FE Coleges aside . FE ( post 16) in schools does not have parity either).

    As long as you have a sytem which has a pay scale whereby "ordinary classroom teachers " who teach sychology can be paid either 13K ( because they have been qualified as an FE teacher)or 17K because they are an NQT or 30K because they are top of mainscale ( or even over threshold) then there is no parity. Teachers are not being paid equally for equal work or responsibility.

    The same applies to HoD's . Different HoD's get different pay also - not according to responsibility but by pay scale.

    Further, the post we are discussing here is NOT a HoD since its a one man subject and so one of the main responsibilities of s HoD has been taken out - man management . This is self management. %0

    This is a subject coordination post( which we have a scale for in FE Colleges ) or an i/c post.

    As I said, I get two paid frees for my i/c responsibilities. TLR means that even once would have been HoDs have lost management points let alone being given some for I/C posts!

    When there is parity in the sector - when FE teachers who work in sixth forms are given recognition as qualified status, then we might be able to argue for NQT's with i/c responsibilities to be paid on a higher point on the scale such that the OP and I are also paid equally for our perceieved equal work.

    Besides the OP has not said what she is actually paid! His/her i/c responsibility may have been recongnised with a higher point on the entry scale for all we know , or like me he/she may get free time for the additional workload.

    Those questions have not been answered here.

    I agree the parity issue is important but its important at all levels.

    The fact is this job should not be done by an NQT.

    I would bet actually that I am getting less for this job than the NQT is! I get 14K for an o.4. I consider that good going.

  17. From Barrie's point of view it would beg the question what is the point of having H o Ds if classroom teachers are expected to do everything that a HoD would do anyway?
    I just think the school is being tight fisted. I'm 31 and have tutored for an Access course before doing a PGCE so I have experience.

    I suppose all I can do is get as much experience as I can and move on to a position that recognises and rewards that experience.
    I'm going to approach the head about being given a possible point from somewhere.
    Anyways, thanks for your comments.

  18. barrie - the Fe/ PGCE etc - it's a seperate issue. In my opinon terms and conditions in FE are shocking in england and I do not know why people accept them - I can only conclude that it may be the same apathy and union chaos that i see in schools here that makes management and govt able to walk all over people. Sometimes you get the package you deserve and I can tell you this - there is no way teachers in scotland in schools or FE would tolerate what goes on down here.

    let's fight one battle at a time, or at least keep them seperate. If this teacher is on M1 and being expected to do duties of someone i/c of a subject - that should be recognised in pay just as it is for any other subject. the differences in pay for Hod is sensible and generally fair as I stated before.

    the issue about parity of qualification is thornier. I have seen a number of people who have the post 16 pgce really really struggle in schools - there ARE difference and different issues , the training IS different and so i feel that to both between either sector probably demands at least some additional training - in eithe direction.
    Your own case is not typical. you are not, i don't think, teaching younger year groups - and it is a very different kettle of fish to teaching 16 - 18 yr olds in a college environment, and even more different to teaching adults. It is silly to pretend otherwise. When i first began teaching adults after years as a schoolteacher - there were needs and issues I had to address - I think it is probably the same but even more so in the other direction.
  19. Barrie, i too used to teach in FE and was on the old 'silver book'pay and conditions then things changed (for the worse). I see many of my old collegues working under intolerable conditions due to the erosion of these conditions.

    AS a P/t sole teacher in Psychology I can see us going down the same route if we don't stand up for ourselves. Lets face it running a one person subject has its benefits as well as its problems but as many p/t teachers put in over and above what they are paid we should get some inharncement.

    I'm on .55, but put in far more to deliver, manage etc. (don't most good teachers!) But if you are p/t you can fall into fulltime work for part time pay.

    As teachers in one person departments (what ever the subject) we need to push unions to recoginse our position and work on our behalf. We will only be heard if we are united....lets learn for the lessons of FE. before its too late.
  20. celtick - whether or not i am unusual has nothing to do with my training ( or maybe it has).

    i have taught all age ranges from reception infants to University students on my PGCE ( I trained for and in FE). I did two years on supply before getting a job after my last debacle and redundancy!

    Further, I was trained to do schemes of work etc ( what we are not calling HoD's work) in my PGCe - along with all others in my age range regardless of whether they were schol trained or FE trained.

    Perhaps therefore if I am unusual its just because I have been teaching a long time. When I took my PGCE I was trained alongside those training for lower school. The difference between me and them was I did my "TP" ( because I actually had a job) in FE and they were placed in schools.

    My first job ( before I was qualified at all ) was teaching maths in a hell hole SM school in Plymouth back in 1982. I did it for a year before doing my Ph.D. Back then a graduate did not need to have any teaching qualification to teach in a school. It remained that way until 1989 in fact.

    I then moved into University teaching whilst I was training as a psychologist - which I then went and did for another few years before coming back to teaching in schools ( I went back into school teaching in 1994 - that was when the grand hoo haa over QTS was going on and I found I was now "unqualified" despite having the same teaching cert as all the schoolies!)

    It is true I do not teach lower school at the moment. I CHOOSE to teach only sixth form. I CHOSE that when I did my teaching certificate too. That was what I wanted. I also CHOOSE to teach part time - which doesnt leave a lot of room for lower school teaching with my AS/A2 level committment.

    Now, I do on occassion teach lower school cover have done a whole term maternity cover last year on PSHME ( hate the subject - it should be banned . Its useless!). So I can teach lower school children.

    Now, if all goes well in my new job I will teach GCSE H&SC next year. Thats 14+.

    Thats my choice, not because I cannot do it but because I chose not to.

    I am unusual because ITT has changed, ot just in FE, but in school. All of the more recent trainees seem to struggle , no matter what level - look at the GTP and student formum and the NQT board here. Newer entrents to Fe post similar issues on the FE forumu too.

    Its a general phenomenon. Its not about being FE trained.

    This is why , in my opinion the OP is struggling. ITT today is not up to it!

    Now that should never be an argument for paying NQT's for HoD duties - after all the OP doesnt seem to be performing too well does he/she?

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