The role of the Supply Model Taskforce and details of its members.

1. Background

The Minister for Education & Skills announced the establishment of a Supply Model Taskforce to consider future delivery options for supply teaching in Wales. The work of the taskforce is a commitment set out in the Alternative Delivery Model for Public Sector Service: An Action Plan published in March 2016.

2. Duty and responsibilities

The taskforce will draw on national and international evidence in addition to the findings of Wales specific reports recently published in this area notably:

  • The Impact of Teacher Absence, Estyn, September 2013
  • Covering Teacher Absence, Wales Audit Office, September 2013
  • Covering Teachers Absence, Public Accounts Committee, May 2014, and
  • Inquiry into supply teaching, Children, Young People and Education committee, December 2015.

The taskforce is a commitment set out in the Alternative Delivery Model for Public Sector Service: An Action Plan and the work of the Taskforce should therefore take in to account the underlying principles of this document. The principles of social partnership will underpin the work of the Taskforce.

The specific function of the taskforce is to:

  • Review national and international models of delivery for supply cover and engage with key stakeholders to provide a list of alternative options (with associated financial costs) for the Welsh Government on a future delivery model(s) for Wales. There should be a comprehensive analysis of the advantages and disadvantages of each option, reflecting a balance of benefits, cost and risk.

The options should outline a system that encompasses a consistent approach to the provision of supply across Wales that enables positive learner outcomes and the safeguarding of all our learners. The recommended options presented should:

  • Recognise and support a flexible teaching resource
  • Ensure a fair, consistent and transparent pay system for supply teachers across Wales
  • Provide a structured and formal approach for supply teachers to access professional development and performance management processes including disciplinary and grievance procedures.
  • Ensure that schools have access to quality teachers providing continuity in high quality learning
  • Support short term supply NQTs to enable them to be able to fully demonstrate their attainment of professional teacher standards
  • Provide accurate management information on cost, absence levels and patterns in temporary employment.
  • Offer value for money
  • Reduce administrative and bureaucratic burden on head teachers
  • Take into account the underlying principles of the Alternative Delivery Models for Public Service Delivery: An Action Plan
  • Fulfil the requirements set out in the Well-being of Future Generations Act

3. Governance

Sandra Jones will chair the taskforce and she will act as first point of contact.

The Workforce Strategy Unit (Schools), Education & Public Services Group, Welsh Government, will provide secretariat support to the taskforce.

4. Frequency of assessments / meetings

The taskforce will operate between May and December 2016, and will meet at least monthly to discuss progress.

5. Taskforce membership

The members of the taskforce are as follows:

Chair

Sandra Jones

Core members

Martin Mansfield, General Secretary, Wales Trade Union Council
Eithne Hughes, Headteacher, Bryn Elian School
Donna Merrick, HR and Recruitment Consultant

Members of the taskforce will be expected to:

  • offer their views and expertise on issues relating to all aspects of supply cover, and
  • contribute to discussion on alternative models of delivery for supply and provide appropriate options

The taskforce will be expected to liaise with key stakeholders to inform the alternative delivery options. As a minimum this will include:

  • education unions
  • Wales Cooperative Centre
  • local authority
    • HR Directors
    • Directors of Education
  • Regional Consortia MDs
  • Supply Agencies/ Recruitment & Employment Confederation (REC)
  • Education Workforce Council
  • Estyn
  • WAO
  • National Procurement Service
  • Governors Wales
  • Higher Education Institutions delivering teacher training
  • Staff Commission

In addition, the taskforce will be required to seek specialist legal advice, to ensure that any model is compliant with current UK and EU law and within our legislative competence. The Workforce Strategy Unit will provide support with accessing required legal advice.

Members will have regard for The Seven Principles of Public Life (The Nolan Principles):

  • Selflessness
    Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest. They should not do so in order to gain financial or other material benefits themselves, their family, or their friends.
  • Integrity
    Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties.
  • Objectivity
    In carrying out public business, including making public appointments, awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits, holders of public office should make choices on merit.
  • Accountability
    Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate to their office.
  • Openness
    Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions that they take. They should give reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest clearly demands.
  • Honesty
    Holders of public office have a duty to declare any private interests relating to their public duties and to take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest.
  • Leadership
    Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by leadership and examples.

6. Termination of taskforce membership

Membership of the taskforce is terminable by either party, in appropriate circumstances. A breach of any of the terms of the Constitution, including the Seven Principles of Public Life, will be considered an appropriate circumstance for the termination of membership.

7. Quorum

Ordinarily the Supply Model Taskforce will be quorate when all 4 members are present.

If less than 4 members are present, the business may still take place. Decisions will only be made subject to the receipt of written assessment of those group members who are not present.