NQT Pool

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

I have seen a job I’m interested in, how do I apply?

Either search through our current vacancies at http://www.aspirepeople.co.uk/jobs or fill in a registration form athttp://www.aspirepeople.co.uk/members/registration and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

What happens if i’m running late for school?

If you are running late for school It is essential that you let the consultant know as soon as possible. Being late can be one reason why a school may never use a recruitment agency again. By keeping your consultant updated with your progress we can let the school know when to expect you. This is especially important if you are a teacher because you may need your first lesson covering. Don’t forget your consultant is providing a service, which you are a fundamental part of.

How do I call in sick?

In the event that you are unable to attend school you must let us know as soon as possible, ring the agency by 7.00 that morning at the latest. The number is diverted to a mobile which one of the managers will answer. Alternitively you can your consultants mobile number if you have this. You must speak to someone, it is not acceptable to text or email.

You must also ring your consultant by 14.00 to let them know whether you are going back the next day. Don’t forget schools finish around 3.00 so the more notice we have the better.

What happens if I get to the classroom and no work is set?

Schools ask that our teachers and cover supervisors always follow the lesson plan but what do you do if there isn’t one there!
1. Get the pupils settled down and quiet, perhaps start them off with an enjoyable exercise which gets their brains working.
2. Send one of the pupils at the front to find out whether there is meant to be work that has to be carried out. In primary schools it tends to be the school office that can help and in secondary schools it will be the cover-coordinator or your head of department.
3. Supply teachers should always be prepared for this situation, always have a range of resources and lesson plans to hand you can use. Bored kids are noisy and at the end of the day we want them to get as much out of your lesson as possible.

How can a supply teacher get the class quiet at the beginning of the lesson

The best way to start is to get the pupils to line up outside the classroom and ensure they look presentable, rather than you walking in to the lions den with them already at their tables!
Then ask them to put their coats on the chair and to take a seat.
Make sure that you have complete silence before speaking, if you have to wait 10 minutes with your arms crossed then so be it!
Begin my introducing yourself and what your expectations for the lesson are. A good ice breaker is to ask each pupil to stand up, tell you their name and a bit about themselves.
Ensure that every pupil raises their hand before speaking

What shall I do if my classroom becomes out of control?

Being firm and fair and setting clear boundaries will go a long way to ensuring supply teachers have a successful day. If the classroom still becomes out of control it is imperative that you do not touch any pupil, in case you are accused of assaulting them.  Try to verbally break the argument up and immediately ask another pupil to go and get help. Any physical or verbal abuse to yourself or another child should be reported to the Head Teacher.  It is not acceptable to use physical force to discipline a student, if the situation is critical and you have to intervene you must use the minimum required force to break up the situation. Be sure to keep your distance when addressing discipline or behaviour issues and avoid being alone with any student at any time. Supply teachers should avoid situations that fuel aggressive behaviour.

What tips can you give me for supply teaching

Set clear expectations and boundaries at the beginning of the lesson
Present yourself as firm and fair
Go to school prepared and always have a few tried and tested lessons to hand in case work is not set.
Be sure to follow through on the consequences of poor behaviour
Address the behaviour not the person. Keep the two separate when dealing with discipline (Your behaviour is not acceptable as opposed to you are not etc)
Keep calm and confident – do not shout.
Try to learn names and make use of them during the lesson. Also get to know the names of your colleagues.
Remember the names of the Head Teacher and senior Management and refer to them if necessary during the lesson.

What should I take on my first day at a school?

1. CRB
2. Passport or driving licence
3. Aspire People ID badge
4. Timesheet
5. If you are teaching, a host of resources you can use as back up throughout the day

Can I work for other recruitment agencies?

You are able to work for multiple agencies but this can get confusing if you work with more than two agencies on a regular basis.  It is vitally important that you keep any information about Aspire People confidential from other agencies especially what schools you are going to interviews for. On occasions when this information is disclosed it can affect our relationship with the schools and teachers. If you register with an agency after working for Aspire People, you can ask them to write to us and we will provide you with a reference.  When working with other agencies you have to record and inform Aspire People about ever assignment that you do. This is in accordance with the AWR legislation that entitles you to equal pay and working conditions. There is more information about this onhttp://www.aspirepeople.co.uk/candidates/awr-advice-for-temporary-workers

What happens if a school asks me if I want to apply for a permanent contract?

This regularly happens to our candidates, if you are good at your job its likely schools will want to take you on permanently. If you are introduced to a school by Aspire People you can only work directly for that school with the approval of Aspire People. Legal agreements between schools and agencies state that if a school recruits a teacher who has been introduced by an agency then the school will be charged a fee. In some cases we can actually waiver these fees if you work a set amount of weeks at the school through Aspire People. The important thing to remember is we will support you, let us know about the opportunity and we can advise you on the best thing to do.

What kind of work do Aspire People offer?

At Aspire People we ensure that we get you the kind of work that is suitable for your requirements and personal circumstances:
1. Day-to-day
2. Long Term
3. Part – time contracts
4. GTP placements
5. NQT induction placements
6. Permanent

What should I wear to school?

Male teachers should wear shirt/tie/jacket/smart trousers/smart shoes
Female teachers should wear smart top or blouse/skirt or trousers/jacket/smart shoes
Follow the general rule – “would I tell a pupil off if they were wearing the same as me?”
The smarter you are the more you will impress the school and the more the pupils will respect you, especially in a secondary school environment

How can I differentiate myself from other supply teachers?

Just remember that there are 1000s of supply teachers and candidates out there, if you can provide a better service and stand out from the crowd, it will be you that the schools ask for and the difference between you getting full time work or not.
1. Socialise in the staff room, you may just meet the head of department and get offered something long term
2. If you have a free period ask if you can help out with another class or do some admin work. Obviously primary teachers mark and plan in their free period so they may not have time.
3. Thank the cover co-ordinator for your day and let them know you would love to come back
4. If you have a TA in your classroom, involve them and get to know them. They could recommend you to the teacher who’s class you are covering
5.Familiarise yourself with school policies
6. Provide support at break and lunch time
7. Allow time to say goodbye to the head or another member of staff
8. Interact in the staff room
9. Check with the school if there is any additional work you can help out with

How do I get paid?

1. You can download a time sheet from our homepage http://www.aspirepeople.co.uk
2. Fill your section out and get an authorised school representative to sign it
3. A different time sheet must be filled in for every different school
4. You can fax the time sheet over from the school, post it or scan and email
5. You must then ring your consultant to check if they have received your time sheet
6. You must hand in all your time sheets by Monday at 10.00 am
7. If you hand in your time sheet late, you will be paid the following Friday.

Can I Do Supply Teaching as an NQT?

As an NQT you can work on supply but there are a number of important factors to remember to satisfy teaching regulations:

1. Aspire People can help you find a school who will contribute to your induction year; you can do a full year or a term at a time.

2. Short term supply work does not count towards your induction year. You can only work on supply for 4 terms from your first teaching day with the agency

3. Once your 4 terms are over you can not undertake supply work in a maintained school or non-maintained special school UNLESS it counts towards your induction (supply or direct with school)

4. You can apply for an extension of this period to the LEA

How long will my CRB take and where can I track it?

A criminal record check can taken anything up to 8 weeks. However, at Aspire People have the facility to do Fastrack Online CRBs that can 2 days, in many cases. The cost of a CRB is £44 and £48 for a fast track one. To track your CRB once it has been submitted, head to https://secure.crbonline.gov.uk/enquiry/

What qualifications do I need to be a supply teacher?

To be a supply teacher you must have Qualified Teacher Status. There are opportunities for Cover Supervisors, commonly known as unqualified supply teachers. Cover Supervisors can only work in secondary schools, must hold a degree or be working towards one, have ambitions to become a teacher and have voluntary or paid experience in secondary schools.

How long does the application process take?

This really depends on whether you bring all your original documentation to interview and fill out all the application forms correctly. After your interview, if we have everything we need all we are actually waiting upon are your references and your CRB. This can take a matter of days or weeks. Always stay in touch with us once a week while your application is undergoing its checks.

What checks do Aspire People carry out as part of the application process?

Telephone interview
Face to face interview and induction
Right to work in the UK
Proof of identity
Proof of Address
Proof of NI
Medical Checks
List 99
Professional references

How does holiday pay work at Aspire People?

Aspire People adopt the “accrual method” for the way in which you will receive holiday pay i.e paying holiday as and when you take it. To take your holiday you need to do the following:

1. Confirm your period of holiday with your recruitment consultant, it is not advised to take holiday during term time.

2. Request holiday directly with Kerrie Bennett, a member of Aspire People’s payroll team by emailingKerrie@aspirepeople.co.uk

3. You will need to provide notice of your holiday, double the length of time of the holiday you wish to take i.e. if you wish to take 1 week’s holiday you need to let Kerrie know two weeks in advance.

Please be aware that it is not advised to take holiday in term time because of the school needs.

What does ITT stand for? What does initial teacher training mean?

ITT stands for initial teacher training.

If you want to teach in state primary or secondary schools in England or Wales, you need to complete an initial teacher training course.  All ITT courses include the opportunity to spend time in school to help develop your teaching skills and they are designed to build your confidence as you learn about key teaching methods. You can do ITT through a school, while employed at a school or through a higher education institution such as a university or college.

Want to apply for a teacher training course but have a degree in an unrelated subject? What is a Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) Course?

If you are thinking of becoming a secondary teacher your degree needs to be relevant to the subject you want to teach. Initial teacher training providers such as universities or schools make the final decision on whether your degree holds enough subject knowledge for you to teach that subject.

Some providers may ask candidates to top up their subject knowledge with a subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) courses. These courses are aimed at those who have already been offered a place on a postgraduate initial teacher training (ITT) course, subject to completion of an SKE course.

If your provider feels that you have the right qualities to become a teacher but you need to up your subject knowledge before you start training, they will talk you through the range of SKE courses that are available.

There are currently courses available for the following secondary-phase subjects:

computer science
design and technology (D&T)
modern foreign languages (MFL)

Most SKE courses comprise the equivalent of two weeks’ study, but some may be longer depending on whether you need a quick top-up or some in-depth knowledge. Depending on the individual course, you can take this all in one go as a full-time course, or spread over a longer period part-time, possibly through evening drop in sessions or weekend courses.

Applying for SKE courses
You should first apply to an ITT course. If the course provider considers you to have the attributes to make a good teacher, they may offer you a conditional ITT place and refer you to the SKE courses in your region.

If you are applying for a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE), you can indicate on your application form that you are interested in doing an SKE course.

To find out more about a course you can call your local SKE course provider directly and speak to one of the Teaching Line consultants on 0800 389 2500

Upon your successful completion of one of these courses, you are expected to go straight into an ITT course leading to qualified teacher status (QTS).

What is an SEN learning support practitioner?

A role of a learning support practitioner is to work under the direction of the person who is leading the learning for example a qualified SEN teacher. A SEN learning support practitioner will be working with children with disabilities such as:

• Dyslexia
• Autism
• Physically disable
• Sensory Impaired

Being an SEN learning support practitioner is very challenging and often involves roles such as:

• Assisting in disabled pupils personal care
• Admin such as update pupils medical records
• Behaviour management
• Liaising closely with parents or guardians.

If you need some advice on how to become a learning practitioner or are interested in roles of this kind please contact Lee Lamburn on 0121 314 3606

What is a special needs teaching assistant

Teaching Assistant

A role of a SEN teaching assistant is to help assist the Qualified SEN teacher. A SEN teaching assistant will be working with children with disabilities such as:

• Dyslexia
• Autism
• Physically disable
• Sensory Impaired

Being a SEN teaching assistant is very challenging and often involves roles such as:

• Assisting in disabled pupils personal care
• Admin such as update pupils medical records
• Behaviour management
• Liaising closely with parents or guardians.

If you need some advice on how to become a SEN teaching assistant or are interested in roles of this kind please contact Lee Lamburn on 0121 314 3606

What is a cover supervisor?

A cover supervisor is an unqualified teacher that covers a lesson and supervises the class. All lessons are already planned for you by the teacher, all you need to do is go by the lesson plan and ensure the pupils are on track. As a cover supervisor you will get paid, whilst gaining valuable experience to apply for your initial teacher training course.  Aspire People have worked with a lot of students that have just recently graduated and are interested in becoming a qualified teacher but might not have the experience to get onto a course.

A cover supervisor can only work in secondary schools. A cover supervisor will have to take up roles such as:
• Supervising lessons
• Following lesson plans and delivering it to a class
• Supporting lunch and break duties
• Helping out with after school clubs and school trips
• Taking registration
• Reported any concerns over discipline or safeguarding children to senior members of staff

We regularly attend university events across the Midlands and help graduates take that next step in becoming a qualified teacher. This means Aspire People are best placed to help you take your career to the next level. We are the only agency in the Midlands that truly specialise in supporting Cover Supervisors and developing their careers.

On top of this experience you will benefit from free cover supervisor training. For example, we recently held a course on “How to survive your first few weeks in school”.

If you think you have what it takes to be a cover supervisor, someone who is tenacious, fun, with a strong personality then send your CV to marketing@aspirepeople.co.uk


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