Ballinger gets `flood of complaints' over cover (16 December)
Well done to TESS and all who helped in flagging up this disgrace.
One teacher describes being "caught out with the `continuous' clause, saying: `I worked every day for two weeks in three different schools, thinking my second week would be paid at the top of the scale. Had a shock when I got my pay slip. I didn't realise that the proper salary scale only started if you were covering the same class for five continuous days.'" If it is known from the outset that you are working five days or more, then you should be paid to scale from day one. As it has been explained to me by several sources, including a union rep, payment at the lower "daily" rate is not official, some authorities are choosing to implement it.
Isn't it ironic? (16 December)
l Quote: "The weaker kids who need homework the most are the ones who are given the least." Why do "weaker" kids need homework more or even less than other kids? Surely you have to decide what the purpose of homework is. Are you setting too much for the unweak? What is your definition of "weak"?
Keep up with the digital age, schools advised (9 December)
How many teachers or pupils know about open source software, Linux, or Ubuntu? Few. Schools are stuck with ageing hardware and software. However, Linux could be used to upgrade school hardware systems at minimal cost. Linux runs the internet, your mobile phone most likely, and the ATM machine you use. The longer schools stick with Windows systems, the further behind our pupils will be in their knowledge of information technology.
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