A day of two halves: emigrating teachers beware!

Warning: if you are teacher that is considering emigrating to New Zealand, be warned that the challenge that is Immigration is nothing compared to Novopay.

I have had a very stressful day. Novopay have put me on basic unqualified teachers wages because they claim I have failed to provide evidence of my teachers record. They claim they need a full record of all my teaching career, who employed me, from when till when, F/T or P/T, hours, on headed paper and signed. What they do not seem to understand is that there is no overarching organisation that holds a record like this!! My employers said ‘Why don’t you contact teachers payroll?’ I have tried to tell them that there is no central teachers payroll in the UK. Thank the Lord, because look at the mess that Novopay are making, since they were awarded the job on behalf of all teachers in New Zealand!

What I am also struggling to understand is why immigration are happy that I have sufficient teacher experience (which I had to prove to get the visa) but that isn’t good enough for Novopay!

Another thing you need to know about Novopay: I was unable to complete the payroll information prior to my arrival because they refused to accept a scanned document, and needed a real signature, meaning that I couldn’t fill any payroll information in till I arrived. Result: a catalogue of issues and errors that may take up to 6 weeks to sort out, so make you have some back up cash. 

Morning Swim

I lay in bed and heard the rain pounding on the tin roof and thought  to myself: early morning swim can go take a hike!! I still went but at 9am. Despite the car park being full, as many parents decided that the pool was perfect school holiday rainy day kids entertainment, I still had a whole lane to myself for my entire swim session. That’s the beauty of having a 50m pool that is split into two, every time I have been in, despite several other things happening, there is still at least 5 lanes set aside for lane swimming only. A leisurely seat in the swirl pool and sauna, and the perfect start to a rainy day, all for a round $5. Great value.

Converting the driving Licence

AAI decided that due to the weather, the best use of today would be to continue down my list of essential tasks, so I went to the AA (yes, it is a breakdown service, but it is also the organisation that arranges licences) to get a New Zealand driving licence. It couldn’t be much simpler, not like dealing with the DVLA!! All I needed was a passport, the card part of my UK driving licence, proof of address and $52. A quick simple sight test, fill in a form and it was done. I was given a temporary licence, the full one to be posted out to me in 2-3 weeks. Easy! All done in less than 15 minutes!

Although you can drive around on a UK licence for up to a year, they will not accept it as ID anywhere, so I was getting fed up of having to always have my passport with me!

Employment agencies

The phone book is still well used here, so I went to the library to borrow it in order to help me locate the employment agencies. Although they would talk to me, and let me pass my husband’s CV to them, they wouldn’t activate an ‘account’ with them for him, until he arrives, walks in and they interview him. Still, it may help, they know of him now, and it didn’t take long to do.

Track cycling

Banking on the velodromeI was so excited when I found out they had a velodrome that this was high on my list of things to do, it is so difficult to get anywhere near a velodrome for a ride at all in the UK, the people of Invercargill do not know how lucky they are.

I went in and talked to Cycling Southland a few days ago, and I was advised to come down on Tuesday at 6 for their beginner session. Read my Ryding2Health blog today to find out how that went!