Poll: Would you join?

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General Chat Thread, Would you join an Association or Institute for IT Pros in Education? in General; Indeed, and I believe there's also a very good phrase about mutual back-scratching... so maybe it would be better to ...
  1. #16

    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    Indeed, and I believe there's also a very good phrase about mutual back-scratching... so maybe it would be better to do this as support staff in general...

    Which is not to say people like BCS couldn't give the cause a head-start, while reaping the eventual publicity for doing so if it's successful...

  2. #17
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    I would definitley join and am sure that other technicians in our LEA schools would join as well, especially if there are plans for cpd routes for technicians. A few months back i tried to get info from council cpd development officer regarding courses for ourselves and the only one they did that was relevent was training in Office 2007 - which we already offer teaching staff. I know other council technicians are in the same boat as my previous employer (another large council) did not offer any courses and they have about 10 technicians.

    Also it would be good to get FITS training here in Scotland, as there are no courses scheduled.

  3. #18

    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    True, has, that's an issue with my LA as well. They do have a corporate training programme, all the courses on which are free, but most of them aren't at all relevant and the ones that are are of too low a level.

    Interestingly, on this subject, I'm sure most of us will recall the demise of the TDA at the end of March. The TDA's remit may have focused on teachers, but it also offered development opportunities for school support staff as well, including courses like the SWiS at Levels 2 and 3 (in my opinion, absolutely anyone working in a school ought to be required to complete a Level 2 SWiS qualification - on the job, naturally - within their first year). It was retired with effect from the new financial year and replaced with the Teaching Agency, which deals exclusively with teachers. There was no official announcement as to what would happen to the rest of its remit (i.e. all the other professionals requiring CPD working in schools), so I thought I'd give the new boys a ring in mid-April to find out what was going on with that. Poor bloke on the other end was clueless (in fairness, it almost certainly wasn't in his training as it's not in their remit), but after speaking to a couple of supervisors in a row came back with the answer that their understanding was that support staff training is now within the purview of LAs.

    What a joke. I rang our HR department to check this and they have no knowledge of it (and they're not bad as HR departments go). So it seems as if, once again, our interests have fallen by the wayside and somebody somewhere up high has just assumed that whatever it is that County Councils are currently doing (i.e. bugger all) will be enough.

    This is why these threads are important. If nobody else is going to represent our interests, we'll just have to garner the support ourselves. The reason people up top (i.e. central government) are assuming there's nothing wrong is because we're not telling them. We need to tell them.

  4. #19

    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    I've said yes, as sole association.
    With no formal qualification whatsoever, training at last employment was for their own products only despite being more involved with RM and Microsoft products, and training where I am now limited only by time and finance, being part of such a thing would only be a benefit.
    I think it would be important to have an IT professional institution purely for the same reasons already laid out - the lack of anything fully recognised at the moment leaves the profession open to abuse, where "IT Professional" can be a self titled label applying to anyone that can plug in their Xbox to someone with every Cisco and Microsoft qualification under their belt.

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    ...The TDA's remit may have focused on teachers, but it also offered development opportunities for school support staff as well, including courses like the SWiS at Levels 2 and 3 (in my opinion, absolutely anyone working in a school ought to be required to complete a Level 2 SWiS qualification - on the job, naturally - within their first year)....
    The problem with this qualification is that very few organisations that deliver it will not/do not do the modules that relate to the IT Professional. I was looking into this for my staff and rang up 6 different providers (in Northants and outside Northants), they all did the SWiS qualification but it was geared up towards the HLTA/Classroom Supervisors, etc... Told them that it was for IT Services and we wanted the "technical" modules like the "Provide technical support (schools)", etc... And they all said "no"

  6. #21

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    I would join, but would prefer it to be a professional body representing the sector rather than taking on a union-like role. Existing unions have much more experience of the legal protection side of things, which aren't specific to the job.

  7. #22

    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    Agreed, wagnerk, this can be a problem. To be honest, I was more interested in some of the core modules, as the technical side is already within my team's skillset. I was more interested in using a qualification like that to communicate the 'ethos' of working in a school and being responsible for pupils, basic behaviour management (which I believe all staff, support included, should practice as it's never good for the kids to get the idea that there are some things they can get away with in front of one member of staff but not others) and things like that. Many of these things could be quite alien to a professional coming straight into, say, an NM job from working in industry.

    I agree, AngryTechnician, a more BCS-like than Unison-like approach would be preferable in my opnion...

  8. #23
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    Why dont we create an online petition to get this to the government. Below is the link:

    HM Government e-petitions

    The down side is we'll need 100,000 votes before they debate it in the House of Commons.

    The other option is to handcuff ourselves to the downing street gates - we'll get alot of free media publicity from it.

  9. #24

    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    True, that would be a monumental task - could always just start it off though. Nothing to lose there really...

    As for protesting la sufragettes... we'd just look silly to the vast majority of the nation, though perhaps it would actually wake some of them up to the seriousness of the issue! xD

  10. #25

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    I wouldn't want to join any association that was happy to have me as a member!

    (With appropriate thanks to Groucho Marx for that one!)

  11. #26

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    I wouldn't want to join any association that was happy to have me as a member!

    (With appropriate thanks to Groucho Marx for that one!)

  12. #27


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    Quote Originally Posted by aerospacemango View Post
    I wouldn't want to join any association that was happy to have me as a member!

    (With appropriate thanks to Groucho Marx for that one!)
    So good, you posted it twice.

    (With appropriate thanks to Kander/Ebb or B. Joel, whichever one it was)

    I definitely see a need but it's too late in the day for me to join.

  13. #28
    somabc's Avatar
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    Is it not better to be a branch of an existing body such as BCS?

  14. #29

    Ephelyon's Avatar
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    That would probably be great, but as GrumbleDook says, it's been difficult getting them to pay attention to us so far...

  15. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    That would probably be great, but as GrumbleDook says, it's been difficult getting them to pay attention to us so far...
    NSFW but applicable:

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