Placing the right teacher in the right role is incredibly important. We know that, as well as providing quality teachers to cover thousands of classes every week, education agencies are working hard behind the scenes to ensure the wellbeing of the supply teacher workforce.
REC members up and down the UK have been telling us about the good work they are doing in the education sector. In a recent survey of 62 agencies, 75 per cent said they provide supply teachers with Continuing Professional Development (CPD) opportunities.
Recently two of our members have told us exactly how they are giving back.
Simone Payne, Operations Director of 4myschools and Vice Chair of the Education Executive
“As an SME, we work incredibly hard to support our supply teachers.
“Last year, we provided a number of formal CPD events; this covered everything from a child protection event to sessions delivered by the University of Hertfordshire on behaviour management and delivering outstanding lessons. We also provide all of our newly registered teachers with resources on codes of conduct, behaviour management and child protection. This half term we are offering Prevent Training and further certified CPD workshops to all teachers, registered with us or not.
“We want to help our partners source the training they need so we have given a donation of £50,000 to a local Headteachers Association which was used to support teachers and schools with CPD.
We have given a donation of £50,000 to a local Headteachers Association which was used to support teachers and schools with CPD.
“We funded a pilot at a local primary school to enhance a nurture group for disadvantaged children and parents to help them engage with learning which was rolled out to other schools, and funded Teachmeet groups. On top of this, we give charitable donations to overseas projects as part of our Corporate Social Responsibility. We’ve taken suitcases full of stationery and visual learning aids to a hospital and deaf unit in a primary school in Tanzania and continue to fund the building of wells in remote villages in Ethiopia so girls can attend school.”
Stewart McCoy, Strategic Operations Director of Randstad Education and Chair of the Education Executive
“To us, investment in education has a lot of different meanings. We know how important it is to devote resource to the wellbeing and professional development of supply teachers. For example, we work with Sheffield Hallam University’s Institute of Education as a partner and provide significant investment in the support of supply teachers.
We know how important it is to devote resource to the wellbeing and professional development of supply teachers.
“In January 2015, we sponsored the Sheffield Hallam Primary and Early Years Education Conference which enabled 50 of our supply teachers to attend for free. In June 2015, we also held our first full day CPD conference in Sheffield. It took place on a Saturday, it was free to attend and open to any supply teacher whether they were registered with us or not. The day was amazingly successful and all of the key education unions were invited in advance to inform their supply teacher members of the event.
“We supply a huge range of CPD courses on child protection, special educational needs awareness, food hygiene, first aid and health and safety to name just a few. We even invest in opportunities for pupils: we’ve sponsored several workshops in schools which have covered topics such as careers guidance, CV and interview tips and road safety.”
These are just two examples of how our members invest substantial amounts of time and funding in helping supply teachers. By contributing to projects like the ones above, education agencies are working hard to achieve the wider objective of securing a brighter future for teachers and their pupils - which is an ambition we can all share.
REC Education is dedicated to helping REC members, education providers and teachers understand their rights and responsibilities under the Agency Workers Regulations 2010 (AWR). To support this, the REC has created ‘REC Education: What you need to know as a supply teacher’. This is free to both members and non-members, and outlines what a supply teacher is entitled to after qualification under the AWR.
The REC has also produced a longer guide explaining the compliance obligations expected of an education agency called ‘Putting Pupils First’. This is also freely available to schools, colleges and local authorities from the REC website.