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Why do the pay and conditions of teachers pose so many issues?

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by ScienceGuy, May 11, 2011.

  1. ScienceGuy

    ScienceGuy Established commenter

    1. Ignorance - I would guess that most of the profession have heard of the pay and conditions document but maybe 1 in 20 (being optimistic) would have read the most recent version
    2. Everyone will try a push to the limit. This could be headteachers making staff work beyond what they are contracted for or teachers trying to get a TLR for being charge of posters (at a previous school I did have a colleague who got a management point for corridor displays)
    3. Laziness - the number of times queries about TLRs come up which are identical to ones that have been asked previously makes me think that some posters do not bother searching the site.
    4. Complacency - we tend to assume that we are being paid correctly and that our Head is following all the regulations even when the head may not be correct (my current head mentioned in a SMT meeting about how he could make the staff at weekends as part of the 1265 hours until he was reminded about the 195 days!). We also assume that if there were any major problems with the document our unions would keep us informed.
    5. Misconceptions - if staff are not up to date then they may have misconceptions on the current regulations
    6. Jargon - just looking at jobs in the TES throws up all sorts of acronyms meaning a mainscale post. Part of this is caused by schools not remaining up to date but equally we do use lots of jargon in education rather than plain English
  2. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    A good summary there SG!
  3. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Possibly all jobs have issues, and it's because we have an agreed set of conditions that the details can be worked out in a forum like this, rather than having to be dealt with individually by people looking at the contract.
    When OH gets a new job, they send him a detailed contract. He goes through it with a fine toothcomb, and on one occasion asked a solicitor to take a look too. He will ask for amendments before he will sign: I don't know how many people bother to do this.
    We get sent a letter saying "subject to STPCD": we don't have any option, so we just sign and assume it's all reasonable, and check out the detail only if the need arises.
    When I trained, we had a lecture on pay and conditions, and that seemed to cover most of the most important things. I asked whether these lectures still happen for those doing PGCE - yes, but close to assignment deadlines so not everyone bothers going, apparently.
  4. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    This seems to be essential in my opinion - so many people don't know about how their pay is calculated, their hours add up, their maternity rights, resignation dates and so on and so on....
  5. littlerussell

    littlerussell New commenter

    Because we are employed by about 20,000 different schools & other settings, many of whose leaders may not have read the pay and conditions documents themselves?
  6. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    Agreed. But often this forum throws up questions that colleagues clearly don't feel able to ask their employers/ schools/ LEAs directly.... Surely teachers aren't that shy in coming forward given that they stand in presenting themselves in front of folk all day.
  7. ScienceGuy

    ScienceGuy Established commenter

    That may be true but how many of your colleagues are on the ball regarding pay and conditions? There are a number of posters e.g. Tafkam, Becktonboy, Middlemarch, TheoGriff and yourself who clearly know what they are talking about and can therefore offer good advice (even if some people do not like what they hear). In any individual school there may be an on the ball union rep. (most likely in a large secondary school) but in a small school the only teacher who would have recent training and have up to date knowledge may be the head teacher. If the head is part of the problem (or could potentially be e.g. in offering part time after maternity etc.) then they may not have anyone in their school who can give them definite advice.
  8. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    Wow... I am flattered to be put in the same league as Tafkam and Griff!!! :))
    That's the thing isn't it? - Such variables as interpretation and application of documents written to guide leaves the profession and it's many colleagues vulnerable. I truly think the flaw lies in the construction of a document so broad based and often vague unless you are one of a geeky few up for studying it indepth you don't stand a chance of defending your workplace rights.

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