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General Chat Thread, Looking for advice in General; OK so some of this might sound a bit daft but having never asked for/been through a job re-evaluation, contract ...
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    Pete10141748's Avatar
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    Looking for advice

    OK so some of this might sound a bit daft but having never asked for/been through a job re-evaluation, contract change or had someone leave my department I could really use some outsider perspective on the situation


    Long story short:
    My colleague (who used to be my assistant ICT Technician, who then became an ICT Specialist TA but retained some of the ICT Tech roles) is now due to leave at Christmas, and it is basically certain that everything he was doing as the ICT Tech will be falling on me to do now, and maybe some of his 'new' TA roles too.

    Obviously there is a reason why there was 2 of us working here, and I'm finding it tough to see how I am going to do the job of 2 people from now on without either a)producing less-quality work in areas or b)making a lot of people annoyed at having to wait longer for service (or services being unavailable).

    Obviously I will point all this out to management when I request a meeting to discuss stuff, but I am thinking that this might also be a prime time to ask for a job re-evaluation / contract change; currently I am term-time only and so performing maintenance that could be done during holidays takes up a fair chunk of time some weeks - the idea being that scheduled maintenance during holidays covered by extending my contract would increase my ability to be "on demand" during term time. I have a helpdesk to show how "in demand" I currently am (very!) in the hope that this will make it plain to them that I don't have an extra 20+ hours a week free to do someone else's job too!


    What do you guys think?

    Does extending my contract to full-time sound a reasonable request, or am I just foolishly hoping that SMT might see sense in all this when really I should just be 'getting on with it'?


    Thanks in advance for any advice or comments!

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Going full time, if you are willing and able to do this, certainly sounds like a very sensible option.

    You need to present a plan showing how you would schedule work in the holidays so that term-time work could be done. You also need to establish when you will be able to take your holidays. You can't and shouldn't work all term and all the holidays as well!

    If you are taking on regular TA work, that involves a contract change anyway... and training. TA work isn't just instinctive, you should expect some training for it; you are there to support young people with specific needs and should be trained accordingly. ( Although I have been in IT in since nineteen eighty-mumble, I did spend a few years as a TA before they realised I knew about computers, so I do have some knowledge on this one!

    You are absolutely right to talk to the management about the future and must not let the changes to your role 'just happen'

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    Pete10141748 (22nd November 2010)

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    dwhyte85's Avatar
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    From my own experience, be prepared for a brick wall.

    You will say service will suffer and they will say that's OK, staff will have to deal with it... but you know full well teachers will not see it that way.

    If they're adding responsibilities like TA, you might see a change in job description and they'll have to offer training and CPD for that, but from my own dealings... if something it is IT (it doesn't matter how vaguely related to IT), your original job description will have covered the duties of the other member of staff... e.g, if he does admin duties like updating a spreadsheet for the big bossman - they may consider it IT when, we may say it's an admin job.

    Be prepared for battle, it could take a while to get what you consider satisfactory medium ground. They may suprise you and recruit another member of staff and you only cover in the meantime?

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    Pete10141748 (22nd November 2010)

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    Pete10141748's Avatar
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    Thanks guys.

    I don't think a replacement is going to be hired tbh, as the Head didn't see the need for 2 term-time only Tech's which is partly why the technician changed job anyway.

    I might have worded the "TA roles" a bit wrongly, I was mainly referring to that fact that my colleague has been helping improve the use of ICT in the curriculum by being in a number of lessons each day promoting ICT and showing how it can be effectivly used; something which I really don't have time for but might well be asked to do anyway. He also still covered minor IT-related jobs such as helping people with photocopying and resource prepping, again something which I can do now and then but not for hours every day.

    I also just learned today that the school is about to spend upward of £40k on new devices including laptops, netbooks, ipads, visualisers etc and again it is going to fall solely to me to set everything up, train people on it, support it's use in lessons and fix it when it goes wrong on top of all the existing stuff too.

    I think elsie hit the nail on the head when she said I need to create a plan to show how the holidays would be used and the effect that would then have in term-time too, but whether or not management will actually see it that way is debatable.

    At least I know I am not being unreasonable to ask for more time to actually do the extra work coming my way

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    dwhyte85's Avatar
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    When will schools learn?

    Flashy new kit is nothing without a team behind it to support it, this 40K gear of kit will be OK for you to support within warranty (maybe not, depends on what you're buying)... if this gear is EXTRA to what you currently have, then where does the time to support it come from?

    AFTER warranty periods where you're supporting this, things are breaking... you're repairing them yourself that's more time you need to be finding whilst maintaining the service you provide + old kit.

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