1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Single status

Discussion in 'Teaching assistants' started by sheepsheep, Feb 4, 2013.

  1. We are due to move to single status 'soon'. Whilst I know this is inevitable and we are one of the last few LEAs to adopt these new contracts, I just wanted to hear from TAs who have been through the process what it actually means.

    I work in primary and am currently contracted 15 hours per week - 5 mornings of 3 hours each, but like many of you, whilst I am paid for the time the children are in the classroom, all that time is spent supporting them, so all the set up, planning, prep etc. is done effectively in my own time, either during lunch or at home.

    My understanding is because I work part time, my holiday entitlement will be pro-rata, and based on a 37 hour week I would therefore be entitled to 15/37th of the 4 weeks per year council holiday entitlement.
    Therefore instead of being paid for 52 weeks of the year I go to 41 or 42 weeks, and get an approximate 20% pay cut?

    Am I simplifying this, or am I being stupid? because this can't be right....
    Does this new contract mean I do the same job for less money?

    How do qualifications fit in to the Single Status role / job descriptions?

    This is a very emotive subject and morale is very low at work owing to all the uncertainty, so if there are any TAs who have been through SS could you drop me a reply to tell me your experience, I'd be very grateful...

    Many thanks
     
  2. We are due to move to single status 'soon'. Whilst I know this is inevitable and we are one of the last few LEAs to adopt these new contracts, I just wanted to hear from TAs who have been through the process what it actually means.

    I work in primary and am currently contracted 15 hours per week - 5 mornings of 3 hours each, but like many of you, whilst I am paid for the time the children are in the classroom, all that time is spent supporting them, so all the set up, planning, prep etc. is done effectively in my own time, either during lunch or at home.

    My understanding is because I work part time, my holiday entitlement will be pro-rata, and based on a 37 hour week I would therefore be entitled to 15/37th of the 4 weeks per year council holiday entitlement.
    Therefore instead of being paid for 52 weeks of the year I go to 41 or 42 weeks, and get an approximate 20% pay cut?

    Am I simplifying this, or am I being stupid? because this can't be right....
    Does this new contract mean I do the same job for less money?

    How do qualifications fit in to the Single Status role / job descriptions?

    This is a very emotive subject and morale is very low at work owing to all the uncertainty, so if there are any TAs who have been through SS could you drop me a reply to tell me your experience, I'd be very grateful...

    Many thanks
     
  3. Hi
    It is a minefield. We were all really worried when single status came in but all of us didn't lose out on the surface. It is up to your head where you are assimilated on the pay scale. If you do take a drop in salary it should be protected for a period of time. All the TA's at our school are on the top of their grade apart from 3 (including me). And even us 3 didn't lose out. Unfortunately with performance management we need a challenging target to move up the pay scale and our head has said that's not going to happen. So we are stuck. One decided to retire so there is 2 of us now. This is demoralising to say the least. Anyway it's just something to be aware of. Unfortunately if you don't sign a new contract your existing one will be terminated. Ask lots of questions and don't get fobbed off. Good luck!
     
  4. Ophelia 9

    Ophelia 9 New commenter

    When we went to Single Status we all became part-time (I actually work 36.5 hours per week) because we are paid term-time only. I haven't got an example of someone on 15 hours but here is how my paid week are worked out:
    39 school weeks + 5 weeks annual leave (obviously more than in your LA) + 2.4 weeks bank hols = 46.4 weeks per year
    Total 7.4 weeks leave divided by 52.142 weeks per year x 46.4 = 45.59 payable weeks
    36.5 hours x 45.59 weeks divided by 52.142 weeks per year = 31.91 hours per week for each of the 52 weeks in the year.
    Therefore I work 36.5 hours per week for 39 weeks and am paid for 31.91 hours each week of the 52 weeks of the year.
    Our long-serving TAs who were officially paid 52 weeks per year didn't actually lose out as they were on a different pay scale from newer staff and got exactly the same wages - it was just that the newer contracts quoted a higher full-time salary and said the job was pro-rata.
     
  5.  
  6. snugglepot

    snugglepot Occasional commenter

    We lost out...well most of us did. We fought it, gathering as much evidence as we could and I advise you to do the same. We still lost some pay but not as much.Mine was half what I was going to lose.
     
  7. chocolateworshipper

    chocolateworshipper Occasional commenter

    Which LEA are you in (if you don't mind saying)? I haven't heard anything about moving to Single Status yet. If it means losing salary, I shall give up!
     
  8. This is appaling, I hope your unions fought against it tooth and nail. In fact, is it even legal? Equal pay is surely written in law?
     
  9. We've been through SS. Some of us lost out. Nobody seemed to care though even the unions seemed to roll over for their tummies to be tickled. Birmingham Council are now taking SS to another level and are trying to take responsibility points away as well. Meaning if you teach small groups or are a cover supervisor and receive payment for these roles, they are going to issue you with a lovely new contract with all the extra you do as part of this new contact for less money. Brilliant. Unfortunately those making these decisions are so far removed from the education setting that they may not even know what a crucial role we play in educating our futures. Every TA in the country needs to take some time off, maybe we could all be signed off with mental health issues as we all must be mental to allow these greedy you know whaters get away with treating people like dirt. Oh happy days!!!
     
  10. In my LA TA's have never had responsibility or SEN points, it is incorporated into the pay scale so those TA's would be on a higher scale to start with, so losing points might not be a disaster for you - as long as Heads put everyone onto the correct scale.
     
  11. Ophelia 9

    Ophelia 9 New commenter

    Unions are most definitely NOT in agreement with this - they consider that the current meetings are part of the consultation process and nothing at all has been agreed.
    Have you been to a meeting if you are affected by this, penj1? Did you talk to your union representative when you were there - if you did and that person said that the unions are in agreement I would very much like you to pm me the details.
    The consultation form on this which was issued to all support staff has to be returned by this Friday 15th February and I would urge everyone to do so - for anyone who is in doubt about how to fill it in I would suggest they strongly oppose the removal of ANY payments, regardless of whether they affect you personally or not, (with the possible exception of revising car mileage allowances -not many support staff bother to claim those although they should do if on a course or other work-related business- and the rates have been ridiculously high in the past).
    In the box for suggestions/concerns/observations you might want to highlight the two areas which the unions are particularly strongly opposed to for TAs - that is, giving medication of any sort to pupils ( I am aware that there are settings or situations where it is not practical for TAs to refuse to do this, eg some special units, but there are very specific rules for such a situation which do indeed involve the payment of an extra allowance even though this is very rarely happening.)
    The other issue is the linking of responsibility points for covering classes to Performance Management targets - this is a totally unacceptable way of paying staff for regularly carrying out the work of someone of a higher grade.
    As I have frequently pointed out, any union is only as strong as its members - if support staff are prepared to take some form of industrial action over this issue the unions will go along with that - but, frankly, I believe the majority will just accept this - or leave and go elsewhere. I believe the process will follow what is now quite normal routine for many people - we will be issued with a Section 188 notice of redundancy and new contracts but if we choose not to sign them and go to work on the day the notice runs out we will be deemed to have accepted the new terms by default.
     
  12. Thank you Ophelia 9. I have passed this on to my colleagues. There is a general apathy that BCC will change the contracts regardless but why the hell should we make it easy for them? Thanks again.
     
  13. Hi, I have worked as a TA for the last 3 years on a 26 hour contract for 38 weeks of the year plus 1 week extra/26 hours for teacher training days). I am then paid 4 weeks holiday in addition based on the hours I work. I am only therefore paid for what I work !? and the holidays I am entitled to. Obviously I work far more than 26 hours a week and do far more than my contract stipulates. However, I love my job, the kids and the school i work for has its ups and downs - doesn't everywhere but I am fortunate that I can spend the holidays with my kids and be home by 4pm. I do see you point but if you do not work 52 weeks of the year why should you be paid this? and yes if you only work 15 hours per week for it does appear you will get a pay cut? Sorry but I suppose we should be grateful to have such a rewarding job. xx
     
  14. I have been incensed to reply to the above post by hmstanton. Quote - "obviously i work far more than 26 hrs a week and do far more than my contract stipulates " - WHY! Yes, I enjoy my job, but the inane reasons people give as to why they work extra,unpaid hours flabbergasts me. IT IS A JOB! Have these people ever worked in the wider world outside of education? These conditions would not be tolerated. In the past people strove and fought to get conditions we take for granted and are so willing to give up.To say you are fortunate to be able to spend holidays etc. with your children is ridiculous. We live in a world where one has to go out and earn a living to enable us to enjoy our leisure time.

    We can only take our holidays out of term time when we are not paid ( also not able to sign on during these weeks or paid a retainer) when any break is far more expensive. We are not on a level playing field with other public sector workers. Therefore our case is different from theirs . None of us should be "grateful" we do a fair days work for a fair days pay.

    I apologise for my rant but it is something I feel strongly about. Support your union.
     
  15. Quite agree you get no more thought of. We were the first authority to go through the process of Single Status and although didn't lose out initially we had to decide last September whether to lose a substantial amount of money or increase our hours from 32.5 to 37. We (there are two of us) were so annoyed after being on the same terms and conditions for more than 20 years. So now I'm at school until 4.30 and usually the last one there! I was asked, sorry told, to plan for my groups but made a stand and said no.
     
  16. snugglepot

    snugglepot Occasional commenter

    We weren't given that opportunity but Single Status meant full time contracts went from 32.5hrs to 37 hrs.
     
  17. Ophelia 9

    Ophelia 9 New commenter

    Full-time hours for other LA employees were never 32.5 hours - they were 37 hours in our authority though there was an odd quirk whereby staff only actually worked for 36.5 - this latter figure has now become used as full-time and this was actually an improvement our LA got after Single Status was implemented (I believe the council tried to keep the 'official' hours as 37 intially and wanted all staff to work that extra 30 minutes or have their pay cut!)
    Under Single Status LA staff, not just those in schools, are supposed to be employed on the same basis therefore there are no longer any peculiar situations of certain staff having a lower number of hours classed as full-time: when I first started work as what was then called a Classroom Assistant my full-time was only 27.5 hours whereas Nursery Nurses and Integration Assistants had to work 32.5 - all for the same pay! Clearly there was an obviously unfair situation there so this was remedied in a 2004 agreement which made 32.5 hours the standard for all the different jobs which were then lumped together under the umbrella title of Teaching Assistant.
    When I became an HLTA the following year my hours went up to 36.5 but because my new contract was term-time-only I went from being full-time to part-time even though I was working more hours! This is what has happened to many TAs when single Status was implemented. Whilst it may seem unfair,I know a lot of local authority office staff who couldn't actually see what was fair about schools staff working 4 hours less every week and 6 weeks less through the year but still being classed (and paid) as full-time staff!
    This is an emotive issue, and I know many TAs feel that they can't be employed on the same basis as other public sector staff but this is what Single Status is supposed to achieve and if you honestly put yourself in the position of some other staff it may seem less clear-cut - plenty of other public sector employees do tough, demanding jobs too, we do not have a monopoly on that.
     
  18. snugglepot

    snugglepot Occasional commenter

    What upset people in this county was that some staff lost pay and it had nothing to do with the hours worked.Our Headteacher doesn't offer any HLTAs or TAs full time. I probably do that many hours a week just not all of them are paid.I love my job I just wish I hadn't lost the money.It is quite a chunk per month.
     

Share This Page