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Umbrella Company Confusion

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by pwaypw, Jul 2, 2019.

  1. pwaypw

    pwaypw New commenter


    I'm doing supply at the school I will become an NQT at in September. They made me sign up through a supply agency. The agency are saying they cannot offer PAYE as they only use UC's. They are saying that the agreed rate was £122 umbrella, and if they find out what the equivalent PAYE rate it is will be much less than £122 a day. I am not sure what to do, I already think the rate is low and do not want more of my take home being taken.
  2. Jesmond12

    Jesmond12 Star commenter

    Why can they not offer PAYE? Any reputable company can.

    Don’t let them say that it is the fault of the school as they will be lying to you.

    Just refuse to work. If you have a contract to work in September then you are safe.
    agathamorse likes this.
  3. les25paul

    les25paul Star commenter

    Try another agency.
    agathamorse and Jesmond12 like this.
  4. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    I'm not at all happy with HR at your school. Presumably they're going through the agency because they can't be bothered putting you on the books until September. It is a relatively easy matter to pay you on a casual day rate and the extra paperwork is only the paperwork that needs to be done before the September start.

    Not sure what you can do about it. This is something that can be addressed by networking, flattery and implied threats, none of which are in your skill-set as an NQT. So unless you were a used-car salesman or some other super-haggler then you'll probably have to lump it.

    My sympathies.
  5. Jolly_Roger15

    Jolly_Roger15 Star commenter

    I share @JohnJCazorla scepticism as to why this school, which will have to 'put you on the books' for September, cannot do so now. Did the school direct you to join a specific agency? If so, i wonder if anyone in the school is getting a 'kick back'.
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  6. pwtin

    pwtin Star commenter

    That is odd.
    Over the years I have been approached by some Heads in schools suggesting we cut out the middle man and they pay me directly, not the other way around.
  7. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    I struggle to see how anyone in HR could be organised enough to be worth bribing!
    agathamorse and Jolly_Roger15 like this.
  8. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    No one “made” you sign up. You did it all on your own.

    I suggest you sign up with other agencies and see what other rates you can get. You may or may not be in demand, depending on your subject. If e.g. you are Physics or Maths (ask for £200 a day to start with), you should be dictating the rate, not the other way around! The school is trying to give you the impression it is doing you a favour by employing you, perhaps? It might be worth emailing the Head (salary £100k-£150k) and explaining the problem and asking if they can help, but still sign up with other agencies and see what pops up.

    Remember, as a supply teacher, no one will look out for you except you. Every agency’s aim is to feed you as many semi-plausible sounding reasons why you should be paid a pittance (lack of experience, need to prove yourself, review in three months, not agency policy etc etc etc) and then get you to agree to it with promises of jam tomorrow. When you do agree, the agency staff then high five themselves, laugh at you for being so dumb as to accept McDonald-type earnings and dream how they will spend the next bonus. Your daily rate after taxes and fees will be little more than minimum wage by the way but as you are on supply, do not agree to any long notice period - agree to a maximum one week. Don’t be afraid to move and don’t be afraid to stick up for yourself, or spend the rest of your life bending over.

    Welcome to teaching in the twenty first century and Good Luck with your chosen career.
    agathamorse and JohnJCazorla like this.
  9. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    As an agency employee, you will also not be allowed to join the Teacher’s Pension scheme as only teachers employed by a school can. This may explain the school’s reluctance to employ you directly as the school’s pension contributions to your pension is a lot. Not joining the TP scheme is very ill-advised from your point of view, even if it seems like decades away. Another thing to consider and discuss with the Head. Don’t agree to anything until you are happy, and be prepared to walk if you have options.
    agathamorse and JohnJCazorla like this.

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