Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Where's My Money?

Unfortunately, paying the auxiliares de conversación on time seems to be a huge flaw within the administration of this program.  There was actually an article in El País the other week about auxiliares in Cataluña who haven't yet received any payment from the program!  The Consejería de Educación is supposed to transfer each auxiliar's stipend to their school each month, so that the school can then pay the auxiliar.

Last month I received October's stipend at the beginning of November from both of my schools, as I should have, because both of my schools received the money from the Consejería, as they should have.  But according to fellow auxiliares' posts in our facebook group, this wasn't the case for everyone.  Many people weren't paid on time since their schools didn't receive the money from the Consejería.

I am now in that boat for November's pay, as during the last two weeks both of my schools have told me that they haven't received any money yet from the Consejería.

At IES P, Paloma said if the money didn't come by this Monday, they would try to front me the money before they got it from the Consejería.  However, she didn't know if the school would have enough available funds after paying the heating, electricity, and other bills.  I haven't yet been paid by IES P for November, and don't think it will happen until they get the money from the Consejería.

On the plus side, today IES M paid me for November and December -- even though they haven't yet received a cent from the Consejería. Yay!  The secretary was able to give me the money up front, and decided to pay us for December now so that we wouldn't have to deal with it over winter break when the schools are closed.  I'm so happy/relieved that he did that.

So to date, I've been paid by my schools for all of October, half of November, and half of December; but the Consejería has only paid them for my October stipend.

As you'll see in the comments at the bottom of the El País article "Hello, where is my money?", it's a shame that this program can't follow through with its contract.  You are to receive a stipend every month, not simply whenever they have enough money to pay out.  Although I've been able to cover all of my expenses, many people had to borrow money to pay their rent, or had to dip into savings they weren't expecting to use.

So just a warning to future auxiliares: be prepared for some delay when it comes to getting paid.  If the Consejería doesn't transfer your school the money on time -- which it sounds like this has been a problem every year of the program -- your situation is completely dependent on your school and the people working in it.

Some schools have enough in their budget to front you the money (like my IES M), while others might not have enough money so you'll be stuck waiting until the Consejería pays up (like at IES P).  Some schools will be active and contact the Consejería to question why they haven't received the money, others will just wait.  I've read about coworkers of unpaid auxiliares that have offered to lend them money until they get paid.  It all depends on your school, coworkers, and city (It seems like everyone in Madrid more or less has at least been paid for October, while the auxiliares from Cataluña mentioned in the article have been working for over two months without receiving a dime - or rather, a euro).

Don't let this turn you off from participating in the Auxiliares program altogether, just be aware and try to save up as much as you can before you come, in case this happens to you.

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