Setting up your supply teacher for success!
Do you feel as though you get the most out of your supply teacher? Are you utilising that teacher’s skill set and specialisms within your school? These top tips will help to ensure you get the most out of your supply teacher!
Provide them with as much information as possible:
In order to provide your supply teacher with the best start, it is essential to begin their day with as much information as possible.
This can be hard with children arriving, parents wanting your attention all whilst trying to settle in yourself however this extra 5 minutes can save you a lot of time in the rest of the day!
Whilst it is essential to provide the teacher with the safeguarding policy/procedures and behavioural policies, it is also helpful to let the supply teacher know the basics of the layout of the school, including toilets, their classroom and, of course where the tea and coffee making facilities are!
Any further information on the class itself is useful. Including if anyone has any additional needs, a certain seating plan, any TAs and anything that may affect the running of the day.
Our supply teachers are adaptable and hard working and this helpful start to the day can ensure that you can leave them to deliver outcomes and look after the class and ensure that you have the time you need to do your own work!
Utilise their specialisms:
Our teachers come with excellent experience, a wealth of knowledge and subject specialisms. Opus Teach we pride ourselves on matching our teacher’s specialisms with the school’s requirement. For example, we have teachers with a specialism in languages. Even if they are not teaching a language, they can utilise their language skills to offer additional opportunities to engage the children to and could cover any PPA time.
Having a new face in the staffroom is a great opportunity to discuss new teaching methods, what other schools are doing, share ideas and discuss what is going on in the industry! These conversations not only help to extend your own personal professional network, but it also allows the teacher to feel more included and gain knowledge from yourself.
Conversely, you can also acquire great feedback from a supply teacher on what they’ve noticed is working particularly well, or ideas they’ve seen in other schools which they may think could work well.
Know what you are paying for:
Depending on the agency you have engaged your supply teacher from, expectations of the teachers work may differ. Expectation may originate from how much the teachers are being paid to how long the placement is.
For a day to day supply teacher, you may have much lower expectations in terms of how much progress they are able to make with the children. Nonetheless, you should still expect good progress to be made, value to be added to the classroom, behaviour to be managed, the classroom left tidy and ready for the returning teacher. Here at Opus Teach, we expect all our teachers to plan and mark and to do the duties of a permanent member of staff depending on the length of a placement.
Our day to day supply expectations include following the plans left (but bringing their own resources and plans in case these aren’t provided), ensuring all school policies are read and followed, managing behaviour, delivering the lesson objectives, making sure all pupils leave safely and happily. A handover note is also expected for the returning teacher, ensuring that feedback from the day is passed over for continuity. This provides value for money for the school but also ensures the children have a great day with minimal change.
In addition to the above, during a long-term placement, Opus Teach would expect the teacher (unless informed differently by the school) to attend parents’ evenings, any staff meetings, be part of the team and invested in the school community.
Making sure you utilise your supply teacher is essential in feeling like you are getting value for your money! Our teachers are experienced, high quality and have so much to add to your school should you choose to utilise them in this way. You can use a supply teacher however you wish during your day, whether it is using them to cover PPA time, having them on a lunch time break to allow other staff to do other activities or just simply just delivering the lesson exactly how you want it done.
Communication is key and therefore if your agency knows your expectations, this can be communicated with the teacher.
If you are looking for quality supply teachers, or just want to discuss the way supply can work for you, please give us a call on 03301 242801 or email us at [email protected].