What is a Cover Supervisor?

When teachers are unable to teach their regular classes, schools will require a Cover Supervisor to look after a classroom short term. This is an incredibly important role within school and deserves to be recognised.


So, what is a Cover Supervisor?

Essentially a Cover Supervisor is someone who will look after the classroom when a teacher is away short term. They will be required to keep the students on task during their lesson and ensure they are doing the work that is planned for them.

Though very similar to the day-to-day Supply Teacher role, this is not the same and frequently doesn’t require the same qualifications.


What experience and qualifications do I need to be a Cover Supervisor?

This will vary from school to school, but generally you will be required to:

  • Have 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and Mathematics
  • Be fluent level of spoken and written English
  • Have good communication skills and confidence
  • Be highly flexible
  • Enjoy working with young people (in our experience, Primary Schools tend not to work with Cover Supervisors – most roles will be with Secondary Schools or Colleges)
  • Hold an enhanced background (DBS) check.

The below are not necessarily a requirement, but something that we ideally look for in a candidate:

  • Previous experience working with children of the relevant age
  • Qualified to degree level or equivalent – although an experienced TA or candidate with relevant transferable skills/subject knowledge or experience can also be considered.

Most importantly, you need to be able to look after a classroom full of students and maintain their behaviour according to the school policy. This will require a certain level of confidence to keep students focused and motivated. You will need to support students through their work and help as required, requiring a broad level of experience.


How much do Cover Supervisors get paid?

Cover Supervisor pay will vary from position to position. Generally in the UK the pay will be between £17,000 and £28,000, depending on experience. This is paid pro rata, meaning that this is what you would earn if you were working full time hours.

At System People, our rates range from £100 – £125 per day.


What are the future career prospects of a Cover Supervisor?

There are a variety of ways to progress from a Cover Supervisor!

If you looking to become a Qualified Teacher through a PGCE or enrol on to a school’s direct program, this is a great way to gain teaching hours and progress in the teaching profession. What a fantastic way to get more classroom time with students!

This can also be great experience for Teaching Assistants to gain the full classroom teaching experience and move into a HLTA (higher level TA) position.

Individuals working as a cover supervisor without a TA qualification may go on to study for the Level 3 TA qualification in supporting teaching and learning. The work experience gained will be invaluable to this course!

Some Cover Supervisors that have qualifications or experience in a particular school subject can be offered longer term work in schools, dependent on needs. For example; if you have an A Level in a subject that they are highly confident in teaching. You may then be offered a role as an unqualified supply teacher in this subject and be paid at a higher rate.

For others, this is the ideal way to work in education/schools without the commitment or responsibility of a full-fledged teaching role.


Where next?

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