Can I be asked to supervise keyworker and vulnerable children?

Hi
New here, I’m new in a science technicians job at a local school (only in post for a few days). I’ve been asked if I can “baby sit/supervise” the keyworker and vulnerable children possibly with the other science technician.
Where are the qualified teachers? I’m not sure my DBS has even been cleared. I’m not a teacher.
Any advise helpful and what union to join.
 
Your DBS just means that you don't have a conviction preventing you from working with children. I may be wrong, other people may correct me, but I thought you needed to have a certain level of TA qualification to be left supervising children. I was once told that I wasn't 'insured' to be supervising students. I assumed they meant that the school wouldn't have a leg to stand on if something happened to a child and it was found that I was the only member of staff.
Unison are one of the big unions for support staff, I have been a member for years now. The best advice for unions is see which unions already have a rep in your school, this is usually really helpful if you have issues as they already know the school and its issues. Ask other support staff and see who they are with.
 

Peter Sigsworth

COMMITTEE
Hi
New here, I’m new in a science technicians job at a local school (only in post for a few days). I’ve been asked if I can “baby sit/supervise” the keyworker and vulnerable children possibly with the other science technician.
Where are the qualified teachers? I’m not sure my DBS has even been cleared. I’m not a teacher.
Any advise helpful and what union to join.
Depends what your job description says. The only issue I would have with this is you are supervising students and so you should be paid the same as any other colleagues who have that responsibility. My experience is that they will use you as a child supervisor and pay you as a technician - not acceptable and you should be given a pre-rata financial reward for such work.
 

labtech666

COMMITTEE
I'm in school supervising students. All of the teachers are teaching their full timetables online so support staff are looking after all the key worker and vulnerable students. I'm qualified as a TA and get paid accordingly so I have no problems doing this.
 

Peter Sigsworth

COMMITTEE
I'm in school supervising students. All of the teachers are teaching their full timetables online so support staff are looking after all the key worker and vulnerable students. I'm qualified as a TA and get paid accordingly so I have no problems doing this.
That's exactly the point, thank you @labtech666 - we must be reimbursed if we are doing a job above our pay grade.
 

Peter Sigsworth

COMMITTEE
With regard to keyworker children - we have found that many parents have got wise to this and have now become 'keyworkers' - our keyworker children number has doubled since the first lockdown (spooky)- some schools have seen a 5 fold increase. You could end up with 20 or 30 students in the room, especially if the school puts classes together. So be careful with what you agree to!
 
I'm in school supervising students. All of the teachers are teaching their full timetables online so support staff are looking after all the key worker and vulnerable students. I'm qualified as a TA and get paid accordingly so I have no problems doing this.
That's exactly the point, thank you @labtech666 - we must be reimbursed if we are doing a job above our pay grade.

TA's are generally paid the same as lab techs, ie badly.
 
I have been asked to supervise the kids and will have a TA in the room with me, all I have been told is to watch the students, whilst they do online learning. that is exactly what I will do.
 
I have been asked to supervise the kids and will have a TA in the room with me, all I have been told is to watch the students, whilst they do online learning. that is exactly what I will do.
Same here. I will be on the rota from next week. We are just using 3 rooms for this and have plenty of TAs and support staff to ensure no one is on their own with a group.
With regards to pay, my salary is somewhere between the TAs and ATAs so happy to help out
 
Depends what your job description says. The only issue I would have with this is you are supervising students and so you should be paid the same as any other colleagues who have that responsibility. My experience is that they will use you as a child supervisor and pay you as a technician - not acceptable and you should be given a pre-rata financial reward for such work.
In our school the permanent cover staff ( not teachers) are supervising the kids with an LSA & both
are paid less than techs so I'd be wary about asking for same!
 
Same here. I will be on the rota from next week. We are just using 3 rooms for this and have plenty of TAs and support staff to ensure no one is on their own with a group.
With regards to pay, my salary is somewhere between the TAs and ATAs so happy to help out
Not having a go here, but I really dislike the saying " happy to help out" . Seems to imply those that don't want to do it aren't ? Don't think you meant that btw.
I want to help, but have made it clear that due to age & health I won't take on a 'child facing' role.
Doesn't stop some our office staff from whining that techs stayed home in last lockdown though. Hardly our fault if we were told to. Also some techs have to shield. I certainly wasn't going to beg to go in !
 
Think I feel most sorry for LSA's who have no choice & have to work every day either in school or in online classes.
 
I have signed up to do it in my current school. If you don't want to do it there is no expectation for you to do it. I am working the days my wife is going into her school (she is a teacher). I am being paid so helping out is not a problem to me.
 

Paul Murphy

COMMITTEE
I have not been asked directly, if I was asked, I would categorically say no. When the idea was suggested during a staff briefing (I don't go to these), two science staff members (both Teaching Union reps) said it could and should not happen. I always liked those two.... :)
 
I have not been asked directly, if I was asked, I would categorically say no. When the idea was suggested during a staff briefing (I don't go to these), two science staff members (both Teaching Union reps) said it could and should not happen. I always liked those two.... :)
Thanks for your help
 

karen b

COMMITTEE
I haven’t volunteered this time, but other techs have. Here the students in school are being taught online the same as everyone else, by teachers that mostly working from home. I believe they are mainly being supervised by the PE staff with a rota of SLT.
 
I've not volunteered and would refuse point blank if asked.

No thanks, this asthmatic tech doesn't fancy sitting in a cramped IT room with 30 of [Schoolname]'s Most Infectious.
 

STEMTech

Dave
Just be careful. Extra tasks can easily become routine. I've done reception work, driving the bus, invigilating, supervising key-worker children, first aid etc. Before you know it there's no time to do STEM tech work. Don't be afraid to decline if it's really not part of your job.
 
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