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Slow start to supply?!

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by ninasimone, Sep 11, 2012.

  1. ...well, Sept is always a slow start, what with a new term, new staff, new school and the excitement of that 'settling' in period.
    ...from experience not much will happen for the first few weeks (bar the odd day prehaps) so like many, its Oct half term and beyond when stuff usually comes through
    ...the system is a mess, schools and agencies are in trampling over each other to get the cheapest labour and the govt dont give a damm...its a case for every man (woman) for themselves
    thekillers likes this.
  2. Hmmmmm! Great stuff! Think I'm just a bit gutted as I was rang on the first day of term saying supply cover starting tomorrow up until at least half term. And then it was put on hold until Monday just gone and still nothing has come of it! :-(

    Ah well, I'll keep my phone on in hope!

    Happyregardless likes this.
  3. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi there
    As other posters have suggested, it usually does not pick up until October half term. Last year, I did not get hardly any work up until Christmas. Starting in January, however, I worked almost every day up until the summer break.
    I suppose it is just the nature of supply.
    The hard part for me is having to get up every day very early "just in case" and put on my makeup and be ready to leave anytime after 7:15.
    Take care - it will pick up.
    Roadrunner55 likes this.
  4. rosiedi

    rosiedi New commenter

    I've forgotten how quiet September can be - for Supply!
    Getting quite tired of the routine of getting ready - for nothing;)
    Anyone thinking of applying for other jobs?
    Roadrunner55 and pepper5 like this.
  5. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi rosiedi

    As you can see, I am still working as a supply teacher after four years and this is the start to my seventh year doing supply work.

    Imdo look for other jobs, but in the area I live in other work is scarce and some of the work available is low paid - just above the minimum wage. I can make more working as a supply teacher even taking into account the slow periods and holiday breaks where I don't get paid.

    It can be annoying to get up early and get nothing. I usually spend 30 minutes carefully applying makeup and then at the end of the day have to take it all off which seems like a lot of time wasted if I don't get work.

    Have you been working as a supply teacher long? What age group(s) do you teach?
    Roadrunner55 likes this.
  6. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    I did supply (not by choice but circumstances) for nearly 20 years and although once or twice I did consider other jobs, like pepper jobs are not easy around my area. Lots of seasonal work and largely low paid.
    Plus everytime I seriously looked I decided I couldn't face the rest of my life never teaching again, so backed off.

    Every year Sept was slow and the work I got was always repeat bookings from schools who knew me.

    Hang on in there people- unless you really need a regular income. In that case supply definitely is not an option.
  7. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Thanks Lara. I feelmthe same: despite many of the negative aspects of supply, I enjoy the teaching and learning aspect of it.
    Roadrunner55 and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  8. rosiedi

    rosiedi New commenter

    Hi there pepper 5 and Lara
    Your response uplifted my spirits no end!

    Knowing the Supply work patterns helps me allay fears and expectations!

    I love Supply. It works really well for me... I think I need to know how to use my time in between with some lucrative ventures! Need to get creative;)

    Blessings ladies;)
    Lara mfl 05 and pepper5 like this.
  9. lulu57

    lulu57 Lead commenter

    Both me and Him Indoors are agency workers - so we both have indeterminate incomes, but we get by reasonably well. We didn't have a foreign holiday this year, but we didn't starve, freeze or get into debt!
    I have a target of 100 working days in a financial year (starting in April). So far, I've managed 46, so I reckon I'm on schedule.
    Does any one else have a target number of days?
    Lara mfl 05 and pepper5 like this.
  10. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    I don't have a set target, but I try to work as many days as possible. My husband is self-employed and his business hasn't picked up completely prior to the 2009 recession.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  11. lulu57

    lulu57 Lead commenter

    120 days would be fantastic, but I remember reading on this forum somewhere than if you can work half of the 194 available school days in a year, you're doing well - so I decided to use that as something to aim for!
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  12. giddyG2001

    giddyG2001 New commenter

    I've been doing supply for just over two years now, I was day to day for most of that time but have now taken on a post until December (if I don't leave before then - the school don't have a behaviour policy and the SLT didn't do anything when a year 6 pupil told their TA to shut up yesterday!)

    I'm actually a single parent so have signed a GWA contract the past 2 years but this has worked well for me. I've never been sent to any schools I wouldn't have been sent to anyway and the furthest I've had to travel is 35 mins. So all in all, I've been quite lucky. Although this year, I had to fight to get the amount of days I needed on contract. Hence why I've been wondering, if this will be my last year in supply and I may have to go back to a full time role in Jan to give me a few years of certainty. Or, do 2 terms back in the classroom then return to daily for a year or so. I intend to retrain in a couple of years.
    pepper5 likes this.
  13. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Back when we were paid to scale by the LA, I reckoned an average of anything over 5 days a month was a bonus, if I was just doing day-to-day work. However I did a lot of long-term posts as a result of that day-to-day work and did a lot of termly assignments in fact.
  14. rainbowsparkle

    rainbowsparkle New commenter

    Me, and not in teaching either. I can't find anything though. The reason I'm on supply is because I'm not well enough to work full time and other part-time jobs just don't pay enough. Also, every job I've seen seems to want years of experience in other sectors which I just don't have. leaving teaching isn't easy :(
  15. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Have you claimed any benefits younare entitled to if you are unwell and can't work?
  16. rainbowsparkle

    rainbowsparkle New commenter

    I can work, just not full-time or long-term and there isn't any day-to-day stuff going. There isn't even any part-time stuff (two or three days a week) which I might be able to do.

    Apparently, according to the CAB I'm not entitled to any benefits. Even one day a week would take me over the earnings limit for any benefits such as ESA or JSA and there's no way of knowing what my work/earnings pattern would be. I can't get HB because I have a mortgage and help with council tax is only given to those claiming other benefits. It's a very complex system these days.

    Even if I were eligible for benefits, they still wouldn't pay enough to cover my outgoings (which are only £800 a month) so I would have to sell my house and I can't bear the thought of that. Hard though it is, I'm better off doing what I'm doing. I could do without living in constant fear, though.

    Sorry for moaning.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  17. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Rainbow sparkle

    Don't worry about posting your worries on this forum, as that is part of the reason it exists - we try to encourage each other because supply teaching is a tough and lonely road at times. Not all the time of course, but there are aspects to it that make it challenging.

    The good news is that your outgoings are reasonable.

    So, do you want only day to day or long term par time?

    Don't be fearful. I just spoke to one of the agencies I work with and the consultant said not to worry as the work has started to come in.

    Try to take one day at a time.

    Sorry you have not been well. Is there anyone who can help you with a small loan until younger paid should you need it? You might be able to get some advice through The Education Support Partnership.
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  18. rainbowsparkle

    rainbowsparkle New commenter

    I prefer day-to-day as it gives me the opportunity for medical appointments and a day off if I need to rest, but I'd try part-time if anything suitable came up. Distance is a factor though, as I'm on public transport. My dad (bless him) will pick me up and drive me to work a couple of times a week as I find mornings difficult, but it wouldn't be fair to expect him to do that too much. (He's in his 70s and retired!)

    I can't get any loans (I've tried) because I'm not in a position to pay them back, even from friends. I will look into the Education Support Partnership though, and talk to my union as well, I think. Thank you for the advice :)
    pepper5 likes this.
  19. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    You are welcome.

    Contacting your union is a good idea.

    It will work out. Day to day will pickup.
    rainbowsparkle and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  20. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Don't apologize for moaning. Sometimes we just need somewhere to vent.

    £800 may sound reasonable to some, but if you're not earning, even that may be a stretch.
    pepper5 likes this.

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