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Allegation of unprofessionalism/abuse by staff

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by poncho1, Jul 13, 2019.

  1. poncho1

    poncho1 New commenter

    My professionalism has been called into question. I have told a child off by saying, "Don't speak to me like that. Do not answer me back." At the time there was my team leader, two other teachers, one teaching assisstant and the school business manager present. The school business manager then went to the headteacher and claimed that I had been 'kicking off' at the child and that the headteacher had better come and diffuse the situation. Now the headteacher does not want me to continue teaching this child. All of the other staff members have not been asked about the incident. What should I do? Thanks in advance.
  2. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Union, I suggest. (Though might not having someone else teach the child be a plus?;))
  3. Piscean1

    Piscean1 Senior commenter

    Well, without knowing the context, nobody can be sure. How did you say it? However, I've often said those words and I'd say it's pretty likely you were perfectly professional.

    The Business Manager likely overreacted. Maybe they spend too much time number crunching in an office to be able to understand what actually goes on in a school and that children do require firm reminders at times.

    Have you an opportunity to discuss it with the Head and raise concerns about how it was handled?
  4. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Ask if the other teaching staff members present could back you up over an allegation by a member of non-teaching staff?

    Since when did business managers dictate teaching policy? Do you get to tell them which spreadsheets they can't use?
  5. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    I'd shout at a few more and get the class size reduced:)
  6. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    I don't see what you said was unprofessional at all.

    However, in schools, there are so many people who can take offence that it is better to try to come up with sayings that can't be disputed. I worked for 10 years as a supply teacher and made myself watch every word that came out of my mouth always mindful that anything I said could be taken and twisted out of context or a reason to complain.

    blazer's advice is probably a lot better though.
  7. maggie m

    maggie m Senior commenter

    I have frequently used those words. Can't see the problem. It sounds like your business manager is a clone of ours. Runs to the head with all sorts of gossip and is deeply mistrusted.
  8. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    I’ve been there, I told off a child in a semi jokey way that wouldn’t work for all children but I had a good enough relationship with the child to get away with the joke, the HR Manager was present and pulled me up on it to my surprise.
    It depends on context, if you were red in the face shouting or reprimanding the child over something petty then maybe it was inappropriate. Otherwise completely acceptable BM?
    I’m surprised the Head took the action they did (might it be a blessing in disguise?) I assume you are secondary otherwise unsure how that’s possible unless School is multi form entry. Surely SLT get that at this point in the term there is a lot of end of term it is and less than perfect behaviour from adults and children alike.
    If the Head didnt outright criticise you then the solution is a compromise and I’d move on. If you were criticised...... if it repeats you know my advice, TES boards but in this day and age there are many fires and frying pans before one finds something better........
  9. CWadd

    CWadd Star commenter

    Why were there five others there?
  10. Flanks

    Flanks Senior commenter

    This will probably sound unkind, but I can think of lots of ways ofn saying that within context where the teacher would be badly mishandling a situation. Context is also required, these words will never be said and nothing else. Ask yourself, what else did you say? Did you escalate the situation? Do you have history with this child?

    I would also consider that if 5 other members of staff were there, then they have been asked and they also had you aldoubts, or you have a reputation for mishandling these situations and this is the last straw.

    Either way, I rarely believe that a member of SLT/head is as blinkered and silly as some scenarios seem to suggest. Changing a teaching timetable is far far more onerous than applying behaviour policies to a child. Basic economics would suggest that if the head has decided on the more complicated process there is a reason for doing so.
  11. magic surf bus

    magic surf bus Star commenter

    Personally I would prefer it if Business Managers concentrated on paying their invoices on time - it would save me having to spend warm summer days indoors writing frightening verse to them some 6 months after working at their schools.

    I bet they wouldn't accept an August pay packet for work they did in January.
  12. Curae

    Curae Lead commenter

    Am I missing something here.... What on Earth is wrong with saying that. I say it nearly everyday and I am a very well respected experienced teacher. I really doubt OP said it out of context and even then so what. They weren't told to f... K off and die. Many children esp, the spolt brat types from actually well to do families can sometimes forget their manners.I don't care if theyre 6ft 4 and daddy is friends with the PM show me manners.

    There is no need to be so carefull. You have done nothing wrong. On contrary you deserve an apology.

    The Business Manager... oh please... give me one of our lovely dinner ladies... they are far superior at handing such issues and def know more than SLT. Some staff need to just keep out.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2019
  13. A_Million_Posts

    A_Million_Posts Star commenter

    Write down an account of the incident. Ask your colleagues who witnessed it to do the same.
    Don't worry about not teaching that pupil in future. At times that's just the easiest way of dealing with an incident.
  14. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

    the main gist has already posted.

    You might find it helpful to ask/look for clarification of a few things;

    what did he mean by "kicking off"
    what was it that needed diffusing?

    What is the school discipline policy? Is your school trying to implement a "broken"/unworkable discipline policy where the phrase "verbal reprimand" has been removed to hamstring teachers?

    What is the business manager's job description. Where does it say that it is his role to be telling tales to the headmaster.

    Do you have this in writing? Ask for it in writing. Contact your union and ask for it in writing.

    Is the business manager impartial? Is this individual related /connected to the child in some way? For example is the child's mum in a relationship with the business manager?
    agathamorse, Curae and JohnJCazorla like this.
  15. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    When they double up as a copper's nark. :confused:
  16. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

    I must also add, ask to see the business manager's written statement. If it wasn't important enough for them to write it down then it is not important enough for the head to be acting on it.
  17. newposter

    newposter Occasional commenter

    Teachers are bottom of the pile. It is a sad reflection of where we are that schools are dominated by snooty administrators.
  18. Curae

    Curae Lead commenter

    This is
    grumpydogwoman and agathamorse like this.
  19. Curae

    Curae Lead commenter

    This is a really important point. Also and very unfortunately such persons will go out of their way to make other members of staff look inept in a pathetic attempt to artificially enhance their abilities. Its just so sad but happens. This seems to be the only logical explanation. Personally I would wait and see the outcome and then actually approach this person to ask politely (although I get why you might want to tip the rubbish bin all over him) and ask why they felt it appropriate to rush to the HT rather than speak to you first. I honestly think that more training is required so that staff know how to behave and react instead of forever blaming teachers foir everything it's simply just NOT on.
    rach7, agathamorse and Sally006 like this.
  20. A_Million_Posts

    A_Million_Posts Star commenter

    I wouldn't do this. Get the statements from the other witnesses and let it blow over. Only use them if someone else takes this any further, otherwise you're in danger of escalating the situation.

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