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Visiting Music Teacher – Piano

  • Job title: Visiting Music Teacher - Piano
  • Job Type: Casual work, no guaranteed hours
  • Salary: £37.85
  • Department: Music
  • Reporting to: Director of Music
  • Location: Highgate, North London
  • Start: September, 2023
  • Closing Date: 22 May 2023 at 12:00 am
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We are seeking an enthusiastic and experienced piano teacher to join our thriving department from September 2023. The successful candidate would be teaching one-to-one lessons to pupils primarily in the Junior School, from Year 3 to Year 6, although there would also be a smaller number of pupils teach in the Senior School which would have the potential to increase over time. There are currently approximately 1.5 days of teaching available, on an employed basis.

In order to be successful in this role you must have a passion for teaching children, excellent organisational skills and the flexibility to work in a busy school music department.  In addition, you should have excellent communication skills with pupils, parents and colleagues.

The successful candidate must possess a qualification in their instrument to at least degree level or hold a BA or equivalent in academic music. A teaching qualification would also be highly desirable.


The Department

Highgate has a long and distinguished musical tradition: former pupils include John Rutter CBE, Sir John Tavener, Howard Shelley OBE, Jan Latham-Koenig and Daniel Hope. The Senior School Music Department has its base in Dyne House at the heart of the School.

The Music Department has three offices/teaching rooms for the full-time staff, twelve teaching/practice rooms, five classrooms (including an IT music suite and a keyboard room), and a recital/rehearsal room, as well as a 300-seater auditorium refitted with the latest technology in acoustic design.

Individual music lessons are given in all the usual instruments and singing.  Over 55% of the School’s pupils have music lessons, either inside or outside the School and approximately 45% have lessons in school.  About 650 lessons are given per week.  A number of pupils attend the junior departments of London music colleges and participate in the New London Children’s Choir, and National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain.

Job Description

MAIN RESPONSIBILITIES

  • To teach 35-minute piano lessons to each pupil once a week
  • To provide 30 music lessons to each pupil across the academic year
  • To prepare pupils for performances and exams as required
  • To teach all elements of piano playing in a stimulating manner that connects technique with music-making
  • To provide a considered programme of study tailored to each individual pupil that allows for continuity from lesson to lesson
  • To ensure that each pupil is aware of his or her practice requirements for the next lesson and is supported in following those requirements
  • To write reports to parents or carers twice a year on each pupil’s progress
  • To make weekly teaching timetables which work on a lesson rotation system
  • To stay up to date with emails to parents involving timetabling, attendance and other relevant matters
  • Setting the highest professional standards of dress, punctuality and politeness and be prepared to demand the same of his/her pupils

QUALITIES

  • A passion for teaching children
  • A strong interest in piano pedagogy and knowledge of a broad range of methods, such as Kodaly and Dalcroze
  • A keen interest in teaching psychology and learning
  • An ability to motivate and engage pupils
  • An excellent understanding of piano technique, including sound production, tailored towards teaching children
  • A patient and imaginative approach
  • Extensive knowledge of piano repertoire, particularly at the beginner and intermediate levels
  • A familiarity with the ABRSM syllabus
  • Experience in working with children of all different musical abilities
  • Excellent organisational skills
  • A desire to develop personal pedagogical skills and to engage enthusiastically and openly in annual professional learning.
  • A team player with a willingness to share and communicate with colleagues within the piano department and across the music department as a whole

These duties and responsibilities are intended as a guide. They are not exhaustive: the Visiting Music Teacher will be expected to undertake any reasonable task or responsibility as required by the Director of Music.

Person Specification
  • Criteria
  • How will these be tested or verified?
  • Qualifications and experience
  • Essential
    • Must possess a qualification in his or her instrument to at least degree level or hold a BA or equivalent in music
    • Experience in teaching individual piano lessons at a high level to all standards
    Desirable
    • A teaching qualification would be highly desirable but not essential
    • The ability to teach piano in a holistic fashion, which appreciates the connection between technique and musicianship
  • Personal Attributes
  • Essential
    • A passion for teaching
    • An ability to relate well to both pupils and other members of the Music Department and the School
    • To communicate effectively with parents as necessary
    • Excellent organisational skills

Benefits

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

Pension | AVIVA workplace pension scheme offered with a generous 21% employer contribution.

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.

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: 22nd May 2023
  • Timing of interviews: w/c 22nd May, 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.

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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