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Learning Network Manager Thread, Student Placement in Technical; as of last friday i was promoted to nm, which is great but due to our lack of management over ...
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    gibbo_ap's Avatar
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    Student Placement

    as of last friday i was promoted to nm, which is great but due to our lack of management over the last few years we are no replacing me (the head feels we were over staffed) the two solutions i am faced with is sticking it for a year (myself and techy who works at primaries 1.5 days a week) so we can prove the point we need a body or getting a student on placement in for a year.

    i have bin told the decision is mine which is great but i am wary about the students

    what is your experience with students on placement in the tech dept?

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    Dom_'s Avatar
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    Had a few at my last place, good for answering the phone and updating the helpdesk.

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    Had loads. Mixed bunch really. Some lazy as anything and wouldnt do a thing without you constantly on their back. Some totally willing to do anything and always asking what to learn next.

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    gibbo_ap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dom_ View Post
    Had a few at my last place, good for answering the phone and updating the helpdesk.
    that seemed to be my guess, literally an extra pair of hands ... not an extra brain

    seems to be my only choice

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    I did a sandwich placement in IT and found it invaluable. You have to be prepared to train the student though and make sure you get the advert in to the local uni early to get a good one.
    In terms of what they can do it depends very much on how much you let them. Most of the time its sorting printers and mundane stuff so you can focus on the more complicated problems, but I developed some projects of my own including a complete (long over due) overhaul of the server room.
    For the money they can be a fantastic resource IMO.
    Rich

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    I have taken on several University placement students for their year in industry. We always interviewed candidates, and weren't under any pressure to take on the first person to come in through the door. Maybe I've been very lucky, but all those that we have taken on have been very good and a real addition to the team. We had a good relationship with the comp sci dept at a nearby university. We approached a couple of other uni's but the quality of candidates was nowhere near as good, so maybe that is something to look out for. Worth shopping around.

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    I got my first part time tech job whilst I was still at school (both years of my 6th form). The management allowed me to have my own network admin username (so there was a distinction between being a student and being a member of staff). I did get up to quite a lot of things as a part time tech (mainly after school hours or during free periods), the only thing I wasn't allowed to do was to look at the securus logs (obviously) and not allowed to 'poke about' in other staff/student folders unless i was under instruction. but pretty much anything else was allowed. Trust is the key issue here (both ways) and also respect for the level of access you are being given as a student. I am glad i took the oppertunity when it came as it has stood me in good sted for my current job, and hopefully future employment. if you are going to interview a student ask them why they want the job and also what they think that they will contibute and get out of the role.

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    leon999uk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mwnci View Post
    I have taken on several University placement students for their year in industry. We always interviewed candidates, and weren't under any pressure to take on the first person to come in through the door. Maybe I've been very lucky, but all those that we have taken on have been very good and a real addition to the team. We had a good relationship with the comp sci dept at a nearby university. We approached a couple of other uni's but the quality of candidates was nowhere near as good, so maybe that is something to look out for. Worth shopping around.
    Definitely interview, and pick out the ones that would really do want to do the job and learn.

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    what salary do you offer 1 year placement...

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    mb2k01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gibbo_ap View Post
    i have bin told the decision is mine which is great but i am wary about the students

    what is your experience with students on placement in the tech dept?
    I'm not familiar with Student Placements, but as it sounds to me like finance is the issue a Modern Apprenticeship post might be a nice compromise for the school?
    There are obvious financial benefits to the school instead of paying on a mainscale, but you also know that a Modern Apprentice is there because they are hungry to learn and keen to get a foot in the industry.
    You might also find that your Local Authority has a Modern Apprenticeship programme operating where they may fund a percentage of their salary instead of the school funding 100% (Our LA fund 50% of our Apprenticeship salaries).

    Admittedly you might not find an apprentice that can go straight in and perform intermediate / high level tasks, but they should have enough background knowledge to learn quickly and soon become an asset. (If you happen to find a strong candidate you can always approach the Headteacher again towards the end of the apprenticeship and seek to employ them)

    I can't speak highly enough of Modern Apprenticeships - I've even developed a rolling programme with our local college to offer NVQ2 placements each year (this gives us flexibility in our staffing, but mainly gives a chance to someone who needs / wants it)

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    I have someone working for 2 days per week from a college work placement scheme starting in the next couple of weeks. I can't comment yet, on useful it is to the school or how much extra time I will have to dedicate to him but I am willing to give it a go as everybody has to start somewhere and if we decide to look for a fulltime technician next year we possibly have an ideal candidate who would step into the roll well.

    He was in school for 2 weeks during the holidays and was a good help and mixed well so I think its going to be really beneficial to both parties.

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    i'm on placement now but i don't like the way you say an extra pair of hands but not an extra brain.

    i think you'll find alot of placement students are very enthusiastic and keen to get stuck in.

    The majority of us are not doing degree's for nothing.

    It's a shame that we're stereotyped like we can't do much.

    Alot of placement students can bring new ideas that the current technicians don't think about.

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    i'm on placement now but i don't like the way you say an extra pair of hands but not an extra brain.

    i think you'll find alot of placement students are very enthusiastic and keen to get stuck in.

    The majority of us are not doing degree's for nothing.

    It's a shame that we're stereotyped like we can't do much.

    Alot of placement students can bring new ideas that the current technicians don't think about.

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    perhaps 'not a lot of brain' is wrong ... but not a lot of school specific technical knowledge is more correct.

    Had them at Lodge Park for 5 years but it has now been phased out to employ more permanent staff.

    They tend to be a group of enthusiastic problem solvers, some have a higher expectation of their own abilities or don't like the fact the job can be mundane and manual. This resulted in some students dropping out within the first few weeks (get them in over the summer as manual labour) but being replaced (luckily) by a cracking substitute.

    So far they have had one become a team leader at Barclaycard, one working for spuffmonkey, one now training as a teacher, one get married and move down south (and looking for work) and one gone back to complete their degree.

    If you need someone to answer the phone, deal with tickets as they come in and be the buffer for you and your other tech then it can be really good. It takes time to get them up to speed and you need to throw in the odd project to keep them interested, expand their knowledge and if you are planning it long term then try to get some crossover (during the summer hols) when the outgoing student trains up the incoming one.

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