Not-for-profit agency nets pound;3m

18th June 2004 at 01:00
A recruitment company set up by a disgruntled teacher now has nearly 200 schools on its books. Laura Burkin and Stephen Lucas report

Former teacher Susan Moore has turned her anger at the profits made by supply agencies into a business with a pound;3 million annual turnover.

She set up her own non-profit-making supply teacher co-operative two years ago, and now has more than 800 teachers on her books. Nearly 200 schools use her agency.

The Northumberland-based business has been awarded a Department for Education and Skills quality mark. It is to expand, starting in London from September.

"I'm proud of the success so far," said Mrs Moore, a teacher for almost 25 years.

"This might sound like a cliche, but I don't see us as an agency, rather a service for teachers, schools and pupils.

"We are not in this to make money, but to be part of a partnership that provides a service. Yes, we are a business, but we are not in the habit of just making a profit."

She has paid out pound;77,000 so far this year to teachers and schools who have used her agency regularly.

Bonuses of pound;40,000 have been paid to teachers who get pound;50 if they work for 50 days, pound;75 after the next 50 days and so on up to pound;500 a year. Schools have received pound;37,000 in amounts ranging from pound;50 to pound;1,000.

She set up STC (Supply Teachers Consortium) with her husband Peter after an agency demanded nearly pound;2,000 from a school which wanted to employ her.

"Supplying teachers was simply a way for several companies to line their pockets," she said.

Mrs Moore believes schools have saved pound;100,000 by using the limited company, because they do not have to pay introductory fees of up to 15 per cent of the teacher's annual salary to the agency if they want to offer a permanent job.

STC charges schools a daily fee of between pound;145 and pound;188 depending on the teacher's experience, and pays teachers at a nationally-agreed rate of between pound;101 and pound;140.

HOW COMPANIES MEASURE UP

Teaching Personnel

Teacher paid: pound;90-pound;135

School charged: pound;140-pound;180

Intro fee for permanent contract: no charge to pound;1,000

Reed Education Professionals

Teacher paid: pound;95-pound;156

School charged: pound;115-pound;195

Intro fee for permananent contract: no charge to 20 per cent of annual salary

Supply Teacher Consortium

Teacher paid: pound;101-pound;140

School charged: pound;145-pound;188

Intro fee for permanent contract: none

The following companies only supplied London rates:

Hays Education Personnel

Teacher paid: pound;115-pound;130

School charged:

pound;163-pound;179

Intro fee for permanent contract: 12-15 per cent of annual salary Protocol

Teacher paid: pound;100-pound;143 School charged: pound;143-pound;191

Intro fee for permanent contract: 12 per cent

Capita - would not provide rates

Figures at: www.go-london.gov.uk educationteacher_ recruitment_and_retention.asp

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