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Worrying about our futures?

Discussion in 'Teaching assistants' started by Ddsombre, Mar 21, 2019.

  1. Ddsombre

    Ddsombre New commenter

    Hey gang,

    I hope you're all doing well! I guess I'm posting this thread to ask about how many of you are worrying about your futures as TA's?

    I guess what's brought me to this is a discussion I had at work the other day. My line manager told me I should speak to the headteacher ASAP about the budget this next school year, cause it's looking VERY sketchy about whether or not I'll have a job next year. In the last 3 years at my current school, which I absolutely adore, I've been on 1:1 contracts, but working as a general TA in class. The child I work with at the moment is leaving in July, which means my contract is effectively up. I'd absolutely LOVE to continue working at this school, but I'm concerned that there just isn't going to be the money there for me.

    Now, I guess I'm a little upset over knowing I certainly wasn't the last one employed, there have been 2 people hired after me, but I know they haven't had this discussion. Maybe their teachers are just trying to hide the inevitability from them? Maybe we're ALL going to be out of jobs? I just think it'd be a bit unfair if I lost my job due to lack of money, but they were still employed. I don't know how much of a "Last in first out" mentality UK primary schools have though.

    Don't get me wrong. I think I could find another job pretty successfully. I'm in a minority demographic in UK Primary schools ( A young man who wants to work with KS1, with over ten years experience, so I think I'd be pretty employable. But I'm wondering if it's even worth bothering? It seems like this profession is super hated by the government. I know they're trying to force everyone into academies so they can almost entirely eliminate TA's across the country, and I'm deeply considering retraining to something else. I have absolutely LOVED working as a TA, it's been my life's work so far. But with all the uncertainty surrounding it, is it worth carrying on? I have my own place, and my own bills to pay for now, and I can't face that job insecurity in my 30's.

    What do you guys think? Are we a dying breed? Should we retrain before we're too old? Do the Government really hate TA's?
  2. peter12171

    peter12171 Star commenter

    Your situation looks fairly standard to me. If you are contracted 1:1, then when that student leaves your contract in effect ends, regardless of whether you have been acting as a general TA or not. I would check exactly what your contract says about this.

    Budgets are always tight and it is he time of year at which they are reviewed so discussions will be going on; support staff are always going to be one of the first groups in the firing line. Funding will also depend on next year’s incoming cohort. I wouldn’t be too worried, but it would be worth finding out more details (you could open with something along the lines of ‘I know I’m employed on a 1:1 with xxx and that they are leaving in July. Do you know what the situation will be after that?’).
  3. sunshineneeded

    sunshineneeded Lead commenter

    Cutbacks are biting hard everywhere. We still have a good number of TAs at our primary - it's very rare for a teacher to be without one, only happens when people are absent. But, for every two TAs who leave, I would say we only employ one new person.
    Talk to your HT. Make sure they know how happy you are at the school and how much you'd like to stay. Let them know you'd be happy to work 1:1 or as a class TA - whatever meets the needs of the school. Best of luck.
  4. circuskevin

    circuskevin Occasional commenter

    Hello @Ddsombre ,

    Have you thought of learning a few entertainment skills?

    You could practice on the pupils who would no doubt love it.

    Eventually you could start to earn with these skills.

    Something to fall back on. Something you could use during school holidays.

  5. cher_cawley

    cher_cawley New commenter


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