Job sharing has become increasingly common in the education sector over the past 10 years. It is an innovative new approach to employment that involves multiple teachers sharing a single employment contract. They share all aspects of the position, including its responsibilities, benefits, hours and vacation days.
How the contract is split can vary, ranging anywhere from 50/50 to 80/20. This type of arrangement is often preferred by teachers who are returning to the workforce after a pregnancy or illness. Job sharing is also used by teachers who prefer a more flexible work/life balance.
While job share arrangements can be very enjoyable, they do require some additional organisation and planning. Here are a few useful tips to make your job sharing arrangement successful.
Meet with your job sharing partner and clearly outline the arrangement
Before entering into a job sharing agreement, it is important to meet with your partner and discuss the practicalities of sharing a job. Ideally, you will present a unified front to your pupils — with both teachers providing a similar learning experience and classroom environment. Some of the issues you should discuss include:
- How work will be divided between both teachers, including the time in classroom, marking of homework and attendance at school functions
- What special rules will the classroom have for behaviour or student etiquette
- How the classroom will be organised
- How specific sections of the curriculum will be taught
- How much homework will the students be asked to perform each wee
Get the agreement in writing
Create a document that details the responsibilities and duties of both teachers. This document may also be used to describe the teaching approaches being used, rules for student behaviour, guidelines for classroom and other important details. This document ensures both teachers are accountable and continue performing their duties appropriately.
Have a trial period
When you first start a job sharing role, you might experience a few hurdles. They are usually a result of miscommunications about how the classroom should be organised or which teacher takes on certain responsibilities. Unexpected responsibilities might also present themselves like staying after school to help a particular student or preparing additional tests.
Start your job sharing arrangement with a four week trial period. After this period has concluded, sit down with your partner and discuss any concerns. You may have to modify the agreement to reflect any changes that need to be made.
Remain in regular contact with your job share partner
Good communication is the key to a successful job-sharing relationship. Choose multiple communication methods including emails, phone calls and classroom notes. You will have to regularly discuss lesson plans, pupil attendance, classroom issues and much more.
You should also establish a method for tracking the progress of students that can be easily shared with one another. Many teachers in job-sharing roles use online collaborative tools to keep track of all of this information.
It is always useful to set goals for a job-share role. These goals might include increasing the test scores of pupils or covering a specific part of the curriculum in a certain amount of time. Working towards these goals and accomplishing them can motivate and strengthen the relationship between job-share partners.
We hope you enjoyed reading “Top Tips on How to Make a Job-share Work”. If you would like to learn more about the education sector or teaching jobs, get in touch today.