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Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by KB2015, Nov 6, 2017.

  1. KB2015

    KB2015 New commenter

    I thought I would ask you lovely people for some advice before I start taking more steps.

    I am currently on my 2nd year as a supply teacher and like most of you I am finding this year slow and lacking in work. To combat this I am signing up to an international agency to look for jobs abroad.

    Last year I worked from the October to May in a school. I left on good terms and while it was a hard year I worked as if I was a permanent member of staff. Before I left I asked my head of department and the headteacher if I could use them as references in the future. Both agreed verbally. I had no need for any kind of agreed reference as I had no issues in the school.

    I joined the reputable agency and they have asked for references from my previous permanent position (who have readily provided) and from my supply school. My HoD took weeks to do so but eventually after multiple emails completed the short reference request.

    My headteacher however has not completed the reference. I have sent it multiple times, I have sent it to different email address including her pa and admin and I have left a fair few voicemails.

    I have not done any long-term work at any other school so I can not look elsewhere for a reference and like any reputable agency they will only accept a reference from my most recent headteacher. All the other references are simply extra.

    Is there any way I can receive a reference from this headteacher or am I going to have to wait until I do another long-term supply stint. Do I need to involve my union? I really want to broaden my horizons and actually find a job but without a recent reference from a headteacher it seems like I'm stuck.

    Thanks in advance for any advice.
  2. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Try calling the school and speak to the headteacher's PA and be very, very polite. Was this assignment through an agency? Sometimes, schools are reluctant to give references to supply staff.

    I wouldn't involve the union just yet. Call the school, speak to the headteacher's PA explain your dilemma and see if she/he can help. They are going to be able to be diplomatic and may be able to assist. When you speak with the PA don't say anything negative about phone calls or emails not being answered. Just be polite and to the point. Sorry to bother you, but I have a matter of urgency I am hoping you can help me with. Say that sort of thing.

    If that doesn't work, then call your union to see what choices you have or what helpful if any they can provide.

    Let us know how you get on.

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