Welcome to my Blog which combines the unlikely topics of supply teaching with progressive rock. Here you will find my ongoing 'Diary of a Surviving Supply Teacher' and a variety of lists/ timelines/ articles on progressive rock.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Diary of a Surviving Supply Teacher: Seeking Other Work

Monday 6th June 2011

n unselfish supply teacher had given me the names and telephone numbers of two non-teaching agencies, for whom he worked. During the half-term, I had researched them on the internet, with one having their own site and the other just appearing on business sites. It seemed the former was an events organiser and cleaning contractor, while the latter was a recruitment company for a specific local industry. I double checked the phone numbers and made a note of their addresses, as well as studying their locations on Google Maps. This morning at around 09:30am, I telephoned both, starting with the events organiser, who was unavailable. The second agency was more productive and gave me information on the company role, their location, when they signed people and what to bring. Respectively, the last two were: 09:00am – 12:00 noon on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday; and my driving license, birth certificate, two references and a recent pay slip as proof of my National Insurance number. The lady I spoke to, remembered my colleague and concluded with, “See you tomorrow.” 

Later in the afternoon, at around 04:30pm, I called the events organiser, who said he did not have much work, but took my email address so that he could send the application details.             

Tuesday 7th June 2011

I sent an email to the events organiser, in order to confirm my email address, and prepared myself to visit the recruitment company by looking up their location again on a map and collating all the documents they required. With no supply work this morning, I drove to the recruitment company, who were not too difficult to find. Climbing the stairs, I arrived at a serving hatch revealing an empty office. Hearing voices, I knocked on the door to the hatch and a young girl appeared. She just gazed at me, so I said, “Hello” and explained my reason for visiting.

She produced an application form and asked, “Do you want to take it away or complete it here?” Not wanting to drive all the way home again, I opted for the latter and ended up filling out the form by standing at the serving hatch. All dates and addresses I had to produce from memory, but which, in any case, did not seem hugely significant. A list of skills, which I was required to tick, seemed daunting as I did not know whether my driving license qualified me to drive the various vehicles. I ticked administration and left it at that. A person who had appeared in the office, to noisily eat a bread roll and gulp a drink, at the same time I was completing the form, came to the hatch and asked for which post I was applying - from a list of four.

My reply was, “Whichever you think I am qualified to undertake.”

He asked if I had a driving license and wrote something on the form. He explained the other tasks and returned to his chair to say, “When I get a reply from the references, I’ll call you back for training.” I thanked him, turned and headed off back down the stairs.

At no stage did anyone formally introduce themselves or say, “Thank you.”  I was left surprised at the lack of common courtesy and manners, never mind a distinct absence of professionalism.    

Originally posted on Thursday 9th June 2011

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