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Working for an agency

Discussion in 'Teaching assistants' started by weatherstorm, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. I have just registered at an agency in London, who were very positive about finding me work almost immediately (although obviously made no promises). However, I would like a more objective view. Does anyone have any experience working for an agency? Do you earn enough to pay the bills?
    I only just have enough saved up for my PGCE and therefore have no wiggle room on spending that money. I would try to supplement my earnings with private tutoring, but this plan is still completely hypothetical as I haven't completed the assessment for that agency yet.
    My instinct is telling me that this kind of work will be financially unreliable but I'd just like to hear from someone with experience.
  2. After completing my degree, I joined an agency in August 2010.
    I was told by my consultant they had work lined up for me, and that I'd be starting the next week.
    I only ever got 1 call from the consultant. She wanted me to go to a school, literally short notice (she knew I didn't drive), but I wasn't well that day, so I declined (and told her why I couldn't do it).
    Never heard from her again.

    I joined another agency in February 2011, was told I'd get work.
    Same again.
    What made it worse was that my consultant left without notifying me!
    Got no work from them either, even after contacting the agency manager.
    Luckily I recently got a job through my LEA.

    Sorry if no paragraphs appear, always seems to happen for some reason :-/
  3. I spent two years with an agency, and got to say my experience very good. Always had work. I have some tips though
    *Try and get a long term placement, I did predominately, a lot easier than day to day stuff
    *Try and never say no, agencies work on a teering system, lots of things effect where you are on the system. If you always say yes, work hard, have good reports the higher up the system you are and the more you get asked.
    *Stay in regular contact with your consultant, and get to know them as a person.
    However if you have a mortgage to pay and plenty of bills, you may struggle, but for me I supplemented my wage by working in a bar and survived. Survived being the word mind you as I worked my bottom off.
  4. kate89r

    kate89r New commenter

    Ive been with an agency since September, Im a primary NQT but wanted to do some TA work if I could. Since September I've only had 4 days with no work!

    I did the first half term in a TA3 role and that was for 6 weeks. Than after half term was asked to do 1 week of supply as a one to one support assistant with a boy who has autism. They then asked me to stay on until Christmas and yesterday asked me to come back after the holidays until Easter!

    That is just my experience though! I also supplement my earnings with private tutoring to ensure I have enough to pay the bills :)

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