David Ross Education Trust Employee Reviews

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Awful
Teaching Assistant (Former Employee) –  Lincoln, Lincolnshire11 February 2019
Unfortunately this is an academy chain that does not care for its students or staff. No work life balance and it is awash with bullying. Bullying at all levels, staff and students. Avoid at all cost if you wish to remain same!
Pros
Students
Cons
None
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5.0
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Rewarding
Teacher (Current Employee) –  Northamptonshire31 January 2019
Working for a forward thinking, passionate about giving every child the basic right to a great education and innovative trust is exciting and offers me great job satisfaction. I love my job. I can't imagine it is any greener on the other side.
Pros
Making a difference
Cons
None
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No work life balance, high stress, high pressure. Ofsted obsessed
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Uk9 January 2019
My school has become a pressure cooker of stress, extremely deep planning, excessive observations, in depth marking and feedback and general mistrust from SLT.
We've had 4 principles in as many years, two of which seem to have been appointed by head office to pile as much onto teaching staff as possible to see who breaks and leaves then replace with nqts.
Expectations are unrealistic and the school is completely driven by league tables. Teachers are expected to do more with less (no ta support for an entire key stage) but are told that that is how most other schools operate.
Staff are singled out as not meeting standards, despite being previously good or outstanding teachers, "support plans" are put in place with even more pressure untill the staff member hands their notice in.

Avoid DRET at all costs unless you are willing for them to become your entire life.
Pros
My fellow staff are the most amazing group I've had the pleasure of working with.
Cons
DRET requires your entire life and possibly your soul as well.
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Awful, avoid
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Northampton7 December 2018
As with many of the comments, bullying is high within this academy and very little gets done about it. It’s very much a “my way or the high way” approach. If you have a family you are expected to ditch them and be attentive to emails and work life 24/7. The interview process is a complete scandal with promises of great CPD, support and a positive work environment, it’s not. A lot a teachers have dealt with mental health issues due to so much pressure. There are many fabulous places to work, the academy is not one of them.
Pros
The children
Cons
Bullying from senior members and long hours.
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Image is more important than children and staff welfare
TA (Former Employee) –  Lincolnshire3 August 2018
Money being allocated for fads when teachers have to buy basics such as pencils, a disgrace. Stress put on managers being passed down to staff by bullying and unrealistic target setting. Emphasis on Uniform making life difficult for children of poorest parents, SEN equipment non existent where I worked and never anything in budget for the neediest of pupils. Work life balance is dreadful, I gave an extra 45 minutes a day unpaid work to get everything done and to help teachers. As a parent at the school also, I could see how a fantastic community school turned into an uncaring number crunching, pretentious business interest. DRET needs teachers at the very top of the tree.
Pros
The children and staff
Cons
Everything else
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1 star is generous.
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Lincolnshire7 July 2018
I have worked for this company for 5 years. Initially the schools were allowed to look after themselves and that meant better quality CPD as the school I was in valued opportunities for staff.
However as the Trust has moved towards shared services and forced systems, it has lead to chaos. Staff retention is at an all time low, systems are not staff friendly, decisions are not made for students/children.
I have watched many excellent teachers and leaders leave, as they are unable to work in such a negative atmosphere. This has been driven by the very top, who aren't in schools, don't speak to staff and students and many of whom have no background in education.
The worst part is seeing the impact on students who deserve a "world class education" and instead get endless supply teachers and a poor standard of education.
Wages are not always in line with elsewhere, with the Trust ignoring the 2% uplift recommendation this year for teachers on the main scale. For leaders, the wages offered are not on line with schools of a similar size.
Basically, don't work for them. You'd be better off anywhere else but here. It isn't worth sacrificing your mental health.
Pros
The students are lovely, as are many school based staff.
Cons
Everything else!
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4.0
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Learning with children at the centre
current employee (Current Employee) –  Lincolnshire16 April 2018
There's no getting away from it - there is a lot to do here and it's not for the weak willed. Resilience is key in any school, particularly a category. However, there is much to gain from this workplace. The children appreciate our time and interest in their wellbeing and success. Staff are friendly and supportive. Most of all SLT has really understood when my home life was proving demanding; the head listened and has been supportive. The workplace building is modern and conducive to learning. Overall, I'm really happy here and look forward to the future. We are on an upward trajectory of success. It's lovely to do this for the children and with my colleagues.
Pros
Working ethos and the children
Cons
It's all in the mindset
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The worst MAT I have ever worked for
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Lincolnshire30 March 2018
If I could give no stars, I would. The bullying is rife. The
MAT is more concerned with its public image and not what is actually happening in the classroom. High staff turnover. The people in charge seem to have little to no idea how to manage people or even have much experience in education. Far too business oriented and have a “bums on seats” attitude, so they get more funding. I would avoid this MAT at all costs.
Pros
Some of the students
Cons
Too many to mention
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2.0
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They have to listen.
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Northamptonshire20 March 2018
The CEO has to speak to the people that matter, the TEACHERS. If she doesn't then many more highly experienced & dedicated members of staff will follow those that have already left. The teachers are dictated to by a head office that knows nothing about the schools or pupils, their only interest is in numbers.Each school is unique, as is each child, they are not robots.Leave it to the professionals to decide what is best for their school. Get out of your office CEO & sort out the problems before you have no experience left!
I now work in a school where I am appreciated & my opinions matter.
Pros
Children
Cons
Head office
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Bad experience
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Lincolnshire15 March 2018
Bullying is rife. No work-life balance. Very little CPD. Lots of last minute meetings or changes to meetings which are compulsory. No consideration for family life. Deep marking and detailed planning is a must. Extreme number of observations causing high levels of stress and high staff turnover. No thanks given.
Pros
Children
Cons
Long hours, no appreciation
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2.0
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High staff turnover
Admin (Former Employee) –  Grantham27 February 2018
Poor communication, staff not replaced when they leave, leaving the remaining staff to pick up the work. Management don’t communicate with their teams, means lots of good staff leave and there is a high staff turnover. Generally unmotivating environment to work in. Pro is the people you work with.
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Unpleasant culture
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Lincolnshire22 February 2018
Students are lovely but really let down by whole set up. Poor investment in staff and narrow curriculum hits the most vulnerable students hardest.
Dictatorial leadership and empowering of bullies = high staff turnover.
It is particularly interesting that the good reviews here are from admin staff and the teachers who try very hard to deliver this world class education for DRET students are less positive about the company.
Pros
Lovely students.
Cons
Poor resources, massive classes, low morale.
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PR first, children last
Teacher (Former Employee) –  North East8 February 2018
This Trust doesn’t care about children or staff - it is just obsessed with Ofsted and league tables.
The people in head office don’t have a clue about how children learn.
They want every school to be exactly the same.
Staff turnover is high and morale low.
All about ‘spin’ - see the 3 goodreviews below on the same day about the CEO and all the PR stuff on Twitter to bury bad news....
Don’t work here if you like to put children first!
Pros
Staff in schools are dedicated
Cons
Head office too controlling
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5.0
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Great company, passionate about getting the best for children
Finance Manager (Current Employee) –  Grantham, Lincolnshire22 November 2017
To be clear, it's really hard work but unbelievably rewarding. I'm working with people who want to do the best for the children at their school or the Trust generally. The culture is trying to find it's way to working as a group as well as individual schools but it is easy every day to make it better.

The hardest part of the job is making decisions knowing that everything has the potential to impact on children but is also the best

Great decision to join, don't regret in the slightest
Pros
Desire to do things better, great people
Cons
Lots to do with less money
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4.0
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Fast paced forward thinking MAT
Manager (Current Employee) –  East Midlands20 November 2017
I have previously worked in many schools, across different local authorities and in a range of positions and now find myself working for the David Ross Education Trust. In the back drop of a changing landscape of teaching, the profession, local authority control and sponsored or voluntary academies this Trust certainly delivers. They promote unrivaled enrichment and cultural experiences which they deliver in the bucket load. Recently the new CEO has brought greater pace and challenge to addressing raising standards with an ambition to offer a world class education system to the 12,000 students within the trust. There is constant investment on the site. The sponsor is passionate and very hands on with the organisation. The pace is fast, job work/life balance is difficult (as in many organisations) and although reaching some stability in the organisation there is still many job changes/descriptions at the top. Saying that I love working for the TRUST, I feel appreciated and my professional development is well catered for.
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5.0
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Good people. Good opportunities.
Employee (Current Employee) –  Grantham, Lincolnshire20 November 2017
It's a good place to work and everyone cares passionately about giving students the very best education. A clear direction under the new CEO, who has held calls with people to explain the plan.
Pros
Good work life balance
Cons
A lot of driving
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Awful awful awful
Teacher (Former Employee) –  Lincolnshire21 October 2017
Run by sociopathic narcissists. Best to avoid at all costs. Bullying is rife within this MAT and no one seems to care. Too much marking and not enough work-life balance.
Pros
None
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If you like bullies this for you
Teacher (Former Employee) –  East Midlands19 October 2017
Started OK but then the bullying from slt started. The bully didn't just target me but others too. Work life balance doesn't exist, deep marking of everything, very little free time and little cpd. Didn't stay long.
Pros
Some really nice people
Cons
Pretty much everything
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4.0
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Child Workforce Volunteer - School
Child Workforce Volunteer - School (Former Employee) –  Northampton18 January 2017
It was a very good experience as I was looking to gain some of the experience in school field, as I wanted to become a teacher.

The management at first was so lovely, very understanding, supportive and caring. However, there was a bit of miscommunication. Also, it made me realised how long hours teachers must do. Moreover, sometimes working with young adults is very challenging.

Over all, the job culture is high and it was a good experience.
Pros
high job culture
Cons
long hours
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4.0
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it was okay
Administrator (Former Employee) –  Grantham16 October 2016
I enjoyed this job, it wasn't the best. I felt bored most days, hardly anybody communicated with me, i learned how to get in contact with different people around the uk and how to speak and type properly on email and phone calls. the hardest part of my job was to find some work to do when the boss had gone out and you've completed everything. A bonus was the wage!!
Pros
Good wage
Cons
communication
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Overall rating

2.4
Based on 24 reviews
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