Recruitment• 3 Min read

5th November 2020

COVID-19: Support Staff Recruitment On The Rise

As a leading education recruitment agency, we are well placed to spot emerging trends in the job market. For everyone who works in the education sector, it’s been a year of significant ups and downs, from the unprecedented shutdown of schools to the continuing changes to remote learning requirements. One noticeable trend we’ve seen in the last few months is an increase in support staff recruitment in UK schools. We’ve looked at why this might be happening and have shared some possible reasons below.


With increased health and safety measures in place, schools have had to make significant changes to their visitor and supply staff policies since September.  The government’s updated guidance for a safe return to education recommends that schools hire supply staff through the CCS Framework to ensure fair rates and full compliance. The Department For Education has also released recommendations that supply and other temporary staff are block-booked on longer assignments to further reduce transmission risks.


Full Guidance For Opening Of Schools (DfE)

Updated: Guidance On A Safe Return To Schools


Support staff give an extra element of adaptability. Long-term staff can be deployed where needed within the school to support teachers or manage interventions with the added benefit of already having knowledge of the premises, pupils and teachers. It becomes more commercially viable for schools to make these type of hires than to seek out emergency staffing solutions where needs regularly arise. As children return to schools from lockdown and isolation periods, they may find settling back into school life difficult. Behaviour, concentration and engagement may all suffer – TA’s and Trainees can play a vital role in supporting students to work independently when required. We’ve seen a significant rise in schools utilising funding from the A levy and other available funding to hire graduates to create a more flexible workforce. Your Engage consultant can discuss ways to maximise available funding – get in touch below.


7 Great Reasons To Hire Graduates

What Funding Can I Use For Training Graduates


As we’ve seen in several of our partner schools already, support staff and graduates looking to train as teachers are a lower-cost option for schools looking to staff their intervention programmes. Teaching Assistants can offer support to struggling pupils and provide small group or individual tuition either in or out of the classroom.  We’ve seen many of our partner schools utilise funding from the government and the apprenticeship levy to hire support staff in schools that are delivering successful intervention programmes to children already. 


Intervention: Small Group Tuition

How To Use Your Apprenticeship Levy Account

As the pandemic continues to impact schools and the wider job market, we are working to offer the most up-to-date knowledge and insights from the education recruitment sector. To start a discussion around your school’s recruitment needs with one of our specialists, book a call below.

Supporting Schools

Find out how Engage can support your school's intervention strategy


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