Peter Symonds College

Working At PSC

Terms & Conditions

Teaching Staff

The College is a member of the Sixth Form Colleges’ Association and our teaching staff are employed in accordance with their Conditions of Service Handbook or ‘red book’, supplemented by local agreements and policies. All appointments are subject to a six month trial period during which there are three formal meetings before appointment is confirmed. Thereafter teachers participate in an annual professional review process comprising a general review followed by a further discussion including analysis of student performance data.

A recognised full teaching qualification is normally required although it is possible for a strong candidate to be appointed without such. Typically, an unqualified candidate will be appointed on a fixed term basis, with permanent employment being subject to gaining the qualification within two years if full time or four years if part time. The College will normally give assistance in obtaining the qualification. We welcome Early Career Teachers (ECTs) on to our staff and provide additional support during their first year, following Hampshire County Council’s ECT Support and Induction programme where appropriate.

Sixth form teachers are appointed to a scale point in accordance with their qualifications and experience, normally progressing annually on 1 September until they reach the top of the nine-point range. Additionally, we have a very large number of roles which reward teachers who take on additional responsibilities. There are five faculties, each with a Director of Curriculum & Support who leads on curriculum and pastoral matters. Every subject has a Head of Subject post and sometimes a Deputy, plus there are a range of opportunities for leadership in cross College topics. For these responsibilities, staff receive a Management Responsibility Allowance or an Additional Responsibility Payment. Remission is also generally available for these roles.

A full time teacher is required to work for 195 days a year (1265 hours) of which 190 are days on which s/he is required to teach. The remaining days are for training. This is ‘directed time’. A full time teacher’s contact time is 22 sessions (each of 65 minutes) a week, which is frequently but not necessarily made up of 18 sessions subject teaching, two workshops/activities and two sessions for the tutor role. This will change to 26 sessions (each of 55 minutes) a week from September 2022 as we end a temporary Covid-related timetable. Virtually all full time teachers and most part time staff have a tutor group. Undirected time, for lesson preparation etc. is in excess of this and is not defined by the College. The sixth form teaching day is 9 am to 4.40 pm Monday to Friday.

All the above applies pro-rata to part time staff.

All teachers are eligible to join the Teachers’ Pension Scheme and will normally be automatically enrolled on appointment. Further information can be found at

Support Staff

Anyone who is not a teacher is a member of the ‘support staff’ and is employed in accordance with the Sixth Form Colleges’ Association Conditions of Service Handbook, supplemented by local agreements and policies. All appointments are subject to a six month probationary period during which there are three formal meetings before appointment is confirmed. From then on, there are annual professional review meetings.

Our support staff work under many different contracts, but the following are examples:

Full year contract. A full timer works 37 hours a week, with the standard working hours being 8.30 am to 5 pm Monday to Thursday, 8.30 am to 4.30 pm on Friday. The standard lunch break is an hour, which is unpaid. These hours will vary according to the role, for instance in a department where there is a lot of student interaction at lunch times the lunch break may only be half an hour, with an earlier finish.

These staff receive a minimum of 27 days paid annual leave, plus bank holidays. Annual leave entitlement increases with seniority and service. A part timer working full year will receive an annual leave entitlement pro rata.

  • Part year. Many support staff work term time only or term time plus a couple of weeks. They cannot normally take leave during the term time and, when they are not working, part of their time off is technically paid holiday while some of it is unpaid, non-working time. That is, holiday pay is received as part of the contract and part year staff are paid in 12 equal instalments throughout the year. Part year staff may work 37 hours a week during their working weeks or less, the same as full year staff.
  • Casual staff. We have a number of staff who work for us without fixed hours e.g. Invigilators. They are free to accept or decline work that is offered to them and we do not guarantee a minimum amount of work. They are paid on a claims basis for the hours they work, plus holiday pay.
  •  Support staff are paid on a Support Staff Scale and are normally appointed on a range of up to half a dozen points. Appointments on the range are made according to the applicant’s qualifications and experience, with progression at the end of the probationary period and annually on 1 April until the top of the range is reached. It is normal practice, although not guaranteed, for support staff to receive an annual bonus called the ‘Support Staff Standards Payment’ in November each year.

All support staff are eligible to join the Local Government Pension Scheme (administered by Hampshire County Council) and you will normally be automatically enrolled on appointment. Further information can be found the Hampshire County Council website. As a member, you pay into the scheme and we make a significantly larger further contribution on your behalf.