Senior Design, Technology & Engineering Technician/Teaching Assistant

  • Job title: Senior Design, Technology & Engineering Technician/Teaching Assistant
  • Job Type: Full time
  • Salary: £25,000
  • Department: Design Technology & Engineering
  • Reporting to: Director of Design, Technology & Engineering
  • Location: Highgate, North London
  • Start: September 2023
  • Closing Date: 14 June 2023 at 5:00 pm
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We are looking for a Senior Technician / Teaching Assistant of Design Technology and Engineering to work with us. If you want to teach Senior School classes as well as get involved with curriculum delivery from KS1-5 in a forward-thinking DTE, department, get in touch.

The role might suit a qualified technician from the state or independent sectors or a graduate in a relevant discipline who wishes to become a Teacher / Teaching Assistant / Technician.

Developing pupils’ confidence though their natural curiosity is fundamental to the way we teach; pupils are encouraged to experiment and to reflect, both individually and as part of a team, through the iterative design process. Environmental impact and sustainability are also central to Highgate’s interdisciplinary DTE curriculum, with all content firmly linked to real world context so that pupils learn how to solve real-world problems


The Department

At GCSE we follow the OCR specification and pupils explore a variety of topics, from user centred design to robotics, and work with materials and process, such as 3D printing, textiles and welding. Pupils can choose between two different A-level syllabuses: Design Engineering or Product Design, depending on where their main interest lies. Results are excellent. Former Design Technology & Engineering pupils have gone on to have exciting careers in industry including at Rolls Royce, TfL and Dyson. Two pupils recently embarked on prestigious degree-apprenticeships.

The successful applicant will join a team of four full-time teachers and two technicians who teach in dedicated workshops and computer and robotics classrooms. Colleagues in Physics also teach DTE as part of our commitment to emphasising the links across subjects. Co-curricular provision is significant: pupils can opt into numerous DTE clubs, whilst teams from Highgate regularly qualify for the final stages in national and international competitions, including Vex robotics, Greenpower racing, and CanSat. In addition to numerous competition prizes, pupils are regularly awarded Arkwright scholarships.

For more information about the department or to see examples of pupils’ work, please feel free to read this recent article from the Director of Design Technology & Engineering or follow the department on Twitter and Instagram.

Job Description

The main focus of this role is to provide support to teachers (in the preparation of resources for lessons and in the classroom), to support students (in small groups or on a one to one basis during practical activities and with projects) and to support after school clubs. Adhering to all relevant H&S legislation and general maintenance of equipment and resources are integral to the role.

Applicants should be academically well qualified in their field, be able to inspire academically-minded, intelligent pupils with an enthusiasm for technological processes, invention and innovation and be very much a team player. Additionally, experience in, or a feeling for engineering, electronics or computer science would be an advantage, as would an enthusiasm for hands-on design and technological projects. The person appointed will be required to assist with the day to day running of the department and support with lessons. The main focus of the role will be supporting lessons for Key Stages 3 to 5, but support will also be provided for Key Stages 1 and 2 when needed.

MAIN RESPONSIBILITIES

The position will provide effective support across the Design Technology & Engineering Department. Typical duties include:

Daily Preparation

  • Maintaining the teaching areas, stockroom and preparation areas to ensure a clean, safe and orderly environment.
  • Checking the safety of machinery and other equipment (checking that it is functioning correctly and replacing broken blades, checking guards, speed of drills and lathes etc.).
  • Checking that ICT equipment is working, network printers are functioning and have sufficient ink and paper.
  • Generally correcting and reporting on any shortfall in cleaning or maintenance issue

Lesson Preparation

  • Referring to the timetable, scheme of work or liaising with teachers as appropriate.
  • Preparing rooms and materials for lessons, demonstrations, displays, exhibitions and examinations.
  • Designing and constructing models, teaching aids and apparatus.
  • Preparing and placing the relevant materials, tools and equipment (e.g. battery drills, hot glue guns, soldering irons, power supplies, test equipment etc.).
  • If indicated in the scheme of work, pressurising the compressor and checking outlets for leaks.
  • General administrative support including photocopying of resources.

During Lessons

  • During lessons assist the teachers as appropriate with the general instruction, care, and supervision of the pupils.
  • Advising pupils on economic and effective use of materials and safe practice on machinery.
  • When machinery is in use, the Technician’s prime focus is to supervise the use of machinery and advise pupils on safe and effective techniques while the teacher is conducting the lesson. Machines will need adjustment and repair during use in lessons and most require constant supervision (e.g. chuck keys left in, soldering irons not replaced in stands, etc.)

Educational Visits & After school activities

  • Assisting in the supervision of pupils on external visits.
  • Assisting in the Engineering, Automobile and Robotics club for pupils after school.

Maintenance & Improvements

  • Ensuring regular cleaning, checks and maintenance is carried out for all machinery and tools.
  • Being responsible for liaison with the relevant departments regarding storage facilities, day to day repairs and the ordering of cleaning materials.
  • Assisting with proposals for the maintenance and development of the department, suggesting improved practices and procedures for the workshop.

Budget, Ordering & Expenditure

  • Regularly carrying our stock control audits.
  • Ordering equipment and materials as directed by the Head of Department.
  • Organising storage and dispensing of materials to pupils.
  • Checking invoices and passing to the Bursary for payment.
  • Maintaining records of suppliers and expenditure and assisting in the preparation of estimates for the annual budget.

Health & Safety

  • Ensuring a safe working environment for pupils and staff.
  • Keeping up to date with safety legislation and carrying out regular safety checks.
  • Exercising vigilance towards pupils especially in matters of Health and Safety.
  • Alerting the Head of Department to any issues of safety within the department.
  • The Technician must be familiar with and adhere to the safety rules of the workshop and the School as outlined in BS4163 and the risk assessments for the department and must be willing to attend safety training courses as deemed necessary by the Head of Department.

Training and Development

  • The Technician must attend computer training and other relevant courses as required to adapt to the changing demands of the curriculum.

These duties and responsibilities are intended as a guide. They are not exhaustive: the Design Technology & Engineering Technician will be expected to undertake any reasonable task or responsibility as required by the Director of Design Technology & Engineering.

Person Specification
  • Criteria
  • How will these be tested or verified?
  • Qualifications/Experience
  • Essential:
    • Educated to A-level or equivalent.
    • Minimum 5 GCSE’s or equivalent including Maths and English.
    • Previous experience working as a DT and Engineering Technician.
    • Demonstrable experience working in engineering or education.
    • Experience of working with young people

    Desirable:

    • Educated to Degree Level or equivalent in DTE or similar.
    • A Degree in any stream of engineering.
    • Other qualifications in Design Technology or Engineering
    • Previous experience working in a school environment.
    • Demonstrable experience of working with a wide variety of machinery.
  • Knowledge/Skills
  • Essential:
    • Excellent interpersonal skills with the ability to work well individually and as part of a team.
    • Ability to take responsibility as a team member and provide support and an active contribution to the team.
    • Strong organisational skills.
    • An excellent knowledge of Word, Excel, Outlook and databases.
    • High level of attention to detail and accuracy in all work undertaken.
    • Ability to work calmly under pressure, multi-task and manage a diverse workload.
    • A good level of spoken and written English.
    • Ability to recognise the responsibility to develop oneself and proactively.

    Desirable:

    • Ability to use CAD/CAM equipment, such as a laser cutter and 3D printing machine.
    • Ability to design and make electronics circuit using breadboard and PCB’s.
    • Knowledge of child protection and safeguarding policies
  • Personal Attributes
  • Essential:

    • Strong customer focus.
    • Energetic and approachable.
    • Ability to build and maintain strong relationships.
    • Practical and flexible with a ‘can-do’ approach. Able to work effectively and use initiative without constant supervision.
    • A proactive approach to work, and meeting targets.
    • Able to ensure the successful completion of every task or activity with a positive can do attitude.
    • An ability to identify process improvement needs and suggest solutions.
    • The ability to maintain in strictest confidence any information received concerning School matters.
    • Ability to adapt to the culture of an Independent school.
    • A sense of humour.

Benefits

Location | Highgate Village, adjacent to Hampstead Heath, with quaint shops and easy connections across London.

Pension | AVIVA workplace pension scheme offered – 21% employer contribution, with the ability to flex up to 11% of this as additional non-pensionable salary, employees contribute a minimum of 5%.

Personal development | Comprehensive induction support for new staff. Focus on continued professional development for all employees.

Leisure facilities | Free access, at stipulated times, to our sports facilities, including a fitness suite and swimming pool (recently refurbished).

Holidays | Generous holiday allowance of 33 days (including bank holidays) for full-time staff. Most holidays will be taken during school holiday periods.

Lunch | A complimentary lunch including hot meals, sandwiches, salads, fresh fruit and dessert.

Help with sustainable travel  | Access to the Cycle to Work Scheme and a Season Ticket Loan scheme for public transport.

Family-friendly policies | Highgate appreciates that employees sometimes have family commitments so we try to be as supportive as possible, for example with enhanced maternity pay (8 weeks’ full pay, then 10 weeks’ half pay) and paid dependant leave.


Working at Highgate

A culture of community, kindness and belonging

Highgate is a caring, open-minded community, where we promote kindness, empathy and friendship. Everyone who works and studies with us deserves to feel they are part of a welcoming environment that enables them to be themselves and to thrive as individuals.

Our community extends beyond the school, through partnerships, charity work and our commitment to equality, inclusion and sustainability. All members of our school community are encouraged to look outwards and play an active role.

In a recent ISI inspection (Dec 2021), it was noted that “Pupils show exceptional respect for, and appreciate diversity within the school and wider community, and their own and other cultures, demonstrating sensitivity and tolerance to those from different backgrounds and traditions.”

Staff wellbeing

Highgate is committed to staff wellbeing, which we promote by encouraging a strong work-life balance; trying our best to support flexible working requests; providing a nutritious complimentary lunch in the dining hall; and offering access to sporting facilities including our recently renovated swimming pool.

The Staff Wellbeing Committee, with representatives across the School, meets regularly to drive forward initiatives, and a selection of staff have been trained as Mental-Health First Aiders.

We encourage an open culture throughout our school, with regular staff surveys, action committees and opportunities to feedback. We strive for continual learning and improvement, and staff training and development is paramount. There are opportunities to participate in the wider life of our school, such as taking part in trips or societies and getting involved in partnership projects.

More details about working at Highgate can be found here:

Work with us    Aims + Ethos


Charitable work and sustainability

As an independent school, we want to use our position as a charity effectively: to make high-quality education accessible to as many children as possible – through our bursary programme at Highgate and through our work with local state schools. We have partnerships with over 60 state schools across 7 London boroughs, and we are the principal educational sponsor for London Academy of Excellence, Tottenham – an academically-selective state sixth form in a community where such opportunities are lacking.

Alongside this, our staff and pupils undertake charitable activities throughout the year. These range from staff giving up their time to neighbourhood schools and charitable organisations, focused fundraising campaigns, to pupils undertaking community work in the local area or further afield.

As a school, we have a central role to play in educating our pupils, staff and parents about the importance of environmental sustainability. We are taking positive action to adapt our operational performance to tackle the negative effects of climate change. We encourage all our staff to reflect upon their personal and professional practices, to support our environmental agenda and to make positive changes wherever possible.

Application procedure

  • Closing Date: 14th June 2023
  • Timing of interviews: w/c 17 April 2023

Contact: Recruitment Team are happy to answer any questions about this post

Early Application: Applications will be considered ‘as and when’ received and we may close the vacancy if we appoint before the closing date.

Apply here

Inclusion

We know that more diverse teams are stronger teams, and that the more inclusive we are, the more our staff and pupils will feel a sense of belonging and will thrive. To enable us to make reasonable adjustments, please let us know of any disabilities (including neuro-divergence) when you submit your application.

Safeguarding

As this role will have regular unsupervised contact with children you must, if appointed, comply with Highgate’s Safeguarding Policy and Staff Code of Conduct. If in the course of carrying out the duties of the post the post holder becomes aware of any actual or potential risks to the safety and welfare of our pupils, these concerns must be reported immediately in accordance with the Safeguarding Policy.  If whilst in the post, Highgate becomes aware of any safeguarding concerns to staff, pupils or the community; these will need to be followed up in line with the safeguarding policy and code of conduct which is underpinned by KCSE and other legislation. These concerns may need to be shared with other agencies.  A copy of these policies will accompany all offers of employment. Training will also be provided to all staff to support Safeguarding practice.

Please read before you apply

Highgate is committed to the safeguarding and welfare of children and applicants must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to this post, including checks with past employers, the Disclosure and Barring Service and overseas police check if necessary. Candidates from overseas must provide information about their past conduct, for example, by providing documents issued by overseas teaching authorities.

Please note that this role is ‘exempt’ from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 and therefore, you are required to declare any convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings that are not ‘protected’ (i.e. filtered out) as defined by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (as amended in 2013). Shortlisted candidates will be asked to provide details of all unspent convictions and those that would not be filtered, prior to the date of the interview.

In accordance with the latest guidance from KCSIE, we shall be conducting online searches on any candidates who are shortlisted.

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