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; Originally Posted by witch I would like to see a recognised body, of course, but it needs to have some ...
  1. #31
    Andie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    I would like to see a recognised body, of course, but it needs to have some sort of teeth otherwise it is just something else for schools to ignore. I would like to see something that schools access when they consider tech's CPD and performance management so that they can see what qualifications we *should* have and where to go next to get them
    I'll second that!

  2. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    I would like to see a recognised body, of course, but it needs to have some sort of teeth otherwise it is just something else for schools to ignore. I would like to see something that schools access when they consider tech's CPD and performance management so that they can see what qualifications we *should* have and where to go next to get them
    Same here.

  3. #33
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    A question to those of you who are voting "yes" - what would you have this new organisation do which existing unions, BCS, Naace (and dare I say it, Becta) don't already provide?

    If the issue is that you feel unions, LAs and/or SLT don't listen to support staff, then would it not be better to try and make them listen rather than set up an additional/competing organisation? If your school values support staff, they will listen; if they don't, I'm not sure they will start listening just becuase ABCXYZ tells them to.

  4. #34

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    True, enjay, there's a sense in which at some schools it will be a losing battle anyway. However, of the two options:

    a) Listening to one individual member of staff who you don't value anyway, and nobody important is currently telling you that you ought to be valuing them (which is the problem in some places);
    OR
    b) Being told by an organisation specifically set up for this purpose that these members of staff do need valuing, as well as how to go about it in a cost-effective manner.

    I feel b) is more likely. It's true that if people really don't want to listen, then they just won't, but it ought to catch the majority's attention if done properly. I would certainly suggest that one of the primary factors in such an organisation (or branch)'s remit would be to go about their business in a manner that's specifically designed to be "easy listening" for SLTs. As to how to do that, I'm sure there are plenty of people out there who would know more about it than I do.
    Last edited by Ephelyon; 26th June 2012 at 12:46 PM. Reason: )

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    b) Being told by an organisation specifically set up for this purpose that these members of staff do need valuing, as well as how to go about it in a cost-effective manner.
    Forgive me, but I thought that was already within the remit of the organisations I identified above.

    I'm all in favour of having an organisation to represent us and "fight our corner"; my point was that I think this, or something very close, already exists.

  6. #36

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    The problem is, they're not doing it. One of the reasons for that might be that there's too much else for them to be doing already, hence setting up a new body.

    However, yes, I agree, if we could get BCS to do it, that would be better. GrumbleDook is on their Policy Hub, but it seems they're a little busy at the moment. Unison doesn't seem to be doing much on issues like these right now either; they're too busy dealing with pensions and the like and they have been for a while now. I'd prefer BCS over NAACE, as the latter seems to be mainly to do with the teachers. Becta, of course, doesn't exist any more. The TDA or the SSSNB could possibly have taken this issue on too, but they've died a death as well...

  7. #37

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    Yes, I would join but it does need to be an organisation with bite rather than just a few letters to put after your name on a business card.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    The problem is, they're not doing it.
    Is it not easier to pressure them to start than it is to set up a whole new organisation, especially since they would overlap in a number of places anyway?

  9. #39

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    I imagine it would be, yes, and we're considering both options in this thread. The poll, as I understand it (correct me if I'm wrong, please, @wagnerk), is just asking whether you would join one, which may or may not be a new body.

    A number of people have emphasised the need for "teeth" so far, which is why I think it would be great if BCS could do it as they're already well-respected elsewhere.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ephelyon View Post
    I imagine it would be, yes, and we're considering both options in this thread. The poll, as I understand it (correct me if I'm wrong, please, @wagnerk), is just asking whether you would join one, which may or may not be a new body.
    In which case, I would vote "yes, I would join", but I would want it to be an existing body, not a new one set up for the purpose. If it had to be a new one, I would join a fully-recognised "Support Staff in Schools Union" but don't think that would help the us-and-them divide which already exists between teaching and support staff.

  11. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by enjay View Post
    In which case, I would vote "yes, I would join", but I would want it to be an existing body, not a new one set up for the purpose. If it had to be a new one, I would join a fully-recognised "Support Staff in Schools Union" but don't think that would help the us-and-them divide which already exists between teaching and support staff.
    But there already is a union that is for anyone in education and as the teachers tend to join a teaching union, it seems to be predominantly support staff. That is Voice.

    The issue for me is how to get a set of recognised 'steps to qualification' recognised by schools as the method they should be accessing when considering CPD etc for support staff such as ourselves. I am not sure who would be able to implement that though

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    But there already is a union that is for anyone in education and as the teachers tend to join a teaching union, it seems to be predominantly support staff. That is Voice.
    That was my point, wasn't it - that the organisation proposed here already exists.

    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    The issue for me is how to get a set of recognised 'steps to qualification' recognised by schools as the method they should be accessing when considering CPD etc for support staff such as ourselves.
    That is to suggest that we all have the same CPD needs, regardless of size of school, age of pupils, demographic of pupils, IT systems, etc.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by enjay View Post
    Is it not easier to pressure them to start than it is to set up a whole new organisation, especially since they would overlap in a number of places anyway?
    That would be good if enough members were IT professionals from the education sector, however from the sounds of various polls alot of IT Pro's in the education sector aren't because they do not see the benefits for them or there aren't any benefits that are applicable to them.

    For example professional recognition of us that work in the IT field in the education sector... The BCS offers the IEng, CEng and the CITP chartered status for those working at at higher level, which may be applicable for some IT/Network managers but not all. They aren't offering the ICTTech mark which is aimed at people working at least at level 3 of the SFIA, which is appliable to practically all of us IT Pro's in the education sector.

    Qualification wise, you have the user qualifications (eg ECDL, iTQ, Online Basics, etc) or the business orientated ones (eg ITIL, software testing, Green and Sustainable IT, Project management), but if you want to do anything above foundation you have to pay a fortune to go on a course. Yes, they have just brought out the IT Application Specialist apprenticeship, where the only three routes that may be applicable would be either office support, teaching assistant or helpdesk support but again try to find a provider that will actually do this is like trying to find blood out of a stone (and again, non of these routes are specifically geared up towards IT Pro's in education, I mean how many of us just sit on the "helpdesk").

    It's not just a case of lumping all support staff into one bucket, it's the development of the IT Profession - but not only that but the IT Profession in the education section.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by enjay View Post
    ...That is to suggest that we all have the same CPD needs, regardless of size of school, age of pupils, demographic of pupils, IT systems, etc.
    We may not have exactly the same needs as everyone else here, but there's alot of the same CPD needs. This is why there should be some sort of roadmap (with different routes) to assist technicians, senior techs, IT manager, web/VLE developers, etc...

  15. #45

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    Completely agree. I thought it was Unison that had the majority of school support staff though? I'm in Unison.



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