Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility


Permanent recruitment




  • Reed fills multiple temporary and permanent roles for SEN school’s September recruitment 

  • Alchemy uses Reed services over other agencies for our “care” and “understanding” in meeting their goals 

  • The school says they would be “lost without Reed” 

The challenge

As a long-term client of our services, Alchemy School in Kent didn’t hesitate to return for help in finding teachers, outreach tutors and support staff who had the relevant skills and experience to support young people with challenging behaviour. 

Lisa Scott-Bowles, Head of Schools – Alchemy School, explained: “We needed several permanent staff for our current and new schools, to start in September. Reed has long been our ‘go to’ recruitment agency, and Katie Bartholomew, Recruitment Director – SEN at Reed, and her team, have recruited the majority of my team. 

“We’ve used other agencies in the past, but Reed just ‘gets’ us. Katie understands us, our children, and what we require from our staff in terms of adapting to different ways of working, and the various needs of the children in each provision. We always look to take on candidates permanently but offer ‘temp to permanent’ options too. Reed supports us with both.” 

Katie added: “Having worked with Lisa many times, I was confident I understood the brief and the types of candidates who would excel in the school. The main challenge was the shortage of candidates in the marketplace, and the urgency to fill all their vacancies for the autumn term.” 

The solution

While drawing on her previous experience working with the school, Katie set about the brief with the same care and attention to detail as she would for a new client, highlighting “a lot of questioning and listening about the school, the children, their ‘fit’ and expectations of new staff”. Katie also paid several visits to the school to ensure she fully appreciated the requirements from both the school and children’s perspective. 

Describing her approach, Katie said: “I utilised all the tools available to me to search for suitable candidates. I emailed everyone with a detailed initial brief and then spoke to the best-matched ones. 

“I reached out to candidates I have worked with in the past to see if they were looking for a new role, and tailored questions to ensure I selected those with the best and most relevant answers and experience.”  

As standard, Reed conducts thorough vetting calls to assess suitability. Successful applicants were shortlisted by Katie, who sent their CVs to the school straight away, along with potential interview dates and times. 

To extend their reach, our team searched for potential candidates using their tech stack and network of academic professionals. Selected candidates were prepped by the team to support their chances at interview, and Reed ensured a timely flow of feedback throughout the process to keep everyone up to date. 

Lisa said: “As Katie and I have worked together for so long, she knows me very well and interprets my briefs well. She finds the exact match for what we are after and is a credit to Reed as she goes above and beyond for us.  

“September can be challenging and the need to get the right permanent staff is crucial for a successful academic year – Katie is brilliant at supporting this.” 

The results 

Delighted client, Lisa, said: “Katie has more or less staffed our provisions (four of them) single handedly. She knows the exact fit we need and how we work. Not only have we been able to recruit permanently for September, but we have taken a lot of our temporary staff on as permanent as the fit has been so good. 

“The staff secured for us have made a huge impact in terms of stability for the school and the students, especially at a crucial start of the new academic year.” 

Without hesitation, Lisa is quick to recommend Reed to other schools looking for support, with emphasis on the consistent results of our services and ability to swiftly identify suitable candidates every time. 

She concluded: “I know I can contact Katie at any time of the day, even weekends, and she will have CVs to us within 24 hours and interview slots filled.  

“Go to Reed – let them help you through your recruitment process and planning. The support in matching permanent staff can be vital and beneficial. We would be lost without Katie and Reed’s education team!” 

Looking to secure talented teaching and support staff for your school? Contact one of our specialist education recruiters today.