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Am I being too quiet about this?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by whyamIstillhere, Jul 12, 2015.

  1. Really long winded story and I hope its not too ranty.

    I started at a new school in Sept 2014. It became an academy at the same time due to going into Special Measures. I was one of the few good teachers in my previous school and was outstanding in EYFS. I chose to step down from Deputy for my own work/life balance.

    I have worked in East London schools most of my teaching career so when I was given a class of Y6 children that had 60% working at least a level below expected age range, I was not surprised. However, it soon became obvious that the other Y6 did not have the same problem.

    It was the world's worst kept secret that the class teacher had cherry picked who she wanted in her Y6 (and although a few were below working level) they were a much better behaved bunch. I was told by many TA's that she had swapped her troublemakers throughout the years (she's had the same class for 2 years) into my current class and she's taken the more academic children from mine.

    I have spent all year dealing with awful behaviour, children that are clearly undiagnosed SEN. I had daily fights, arguments or a random children distracting the learning.

    I've struggled with stress in the past and this took it to a whole new level, I have refused to be signed off for stress. To top this off, I have a year partner who is on the same level as me (We're both SLT) who is really snappy.. she can fly off the handle, rarely speaks in a professional manner when stressed and seems to want it all her way. I am first to admit that I am not the most organised person but to be made to feel useless by my stage partner is not something I go to work to deal with. It's gotten to the point that the last few weeks have been unbearable and TA's are pointing it out to me that how she speaks to me is not acceptable. An example of this is when rehearsing for their performance, I took a group of children upstairs to continue singing and she actually checked with her TA if I had done it!

    I have chosen to ignore it, as I know we will not be in the same year next year (I am moving to Year 2).

    I spoke to my head teacher, who is brilliant, about it and she told me she was aware that I was not told fully about the class before I accepted the job (she started in Sept also). She also said she did not realise that my year partner and I did not get on. The sad thing is, she is a lovely person just not professionally.

    However, after my Performance Management, for the first time in 10 years of teaching, I have not met the expected targets for my children in their SATS, although most have made outstanding progress (apart from my undiagnosed SEN children). My only NQT did not pass, as they did not give me enough time to support her due to focusing on SATs as well as the deputy taking over (even though it was on my PM!). I actually left my PM meeting with the deputy feeling really incompetent as a teacher and a person.

    My TA and other teacher friends in other schools think I should raise the swapping of children to create a low ability class to the principal, but I feel it would just be rocking a boat that does not need to be disturbed.

    As much as I love working in education, I have made the decision to either leave teaching (whole other dilema) or find a school in another area that is not an East London school, as I am moving in the summer to Brighton.

    I am not sure if I just write this year off as a giant test of my own ability and patience and start next year with a clean sheet.

    Any advice would be great as I am really not feeling it at the moment :)
  2. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Well done for getting through a challenging year. You can see that you have done a good job by a difficult class, even if you haven't ticked the right boxes.

    You're in a different year group next year, and it sounds as if your head is on side. See how it goes before resigning- you've got until October to decide. (Is the move to Brighton in summer 2016? I assume so, from you sayingyou have year 2 next year.)

    If your head is at all on the ball, she should have picked up the difference between the two classes, and may be on the alert as soon as any class changes are suggested in future.
  3. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    I assume you were given PM targets based on the SATs performance of the whole class? The two main teaching unions have campaigned against schools giving teacher's PM targets based on pupil attainment. SATs are a measure of knowledge and skills acquired throughout KS2, so why are you being held solely responsible for Year 6 children's results?
  4. Thanks for the replies, yes I am doing one more year before returning home.

    Yes I had to have 90% making expected progress and 74% achieving level 4 in all subjects.

    I had 5 nqts and one had her time extended for a term, so another failed target. No one has mentioned my pm again, which I find odd. I have contacted the union to be safe.

    As for Union disagreeing with targets, does that apply to academies?

    My head knows the classes were unbalanced and my Sen child's LSA has been with the class since y3 and knows exactly who was swapped out each year, oddly it's all the level 5 children that are quiet as mice!
  5. Thank you for the replies. Nothing has been mentioned about my pm, which I find unsettling.

    Yes a target was 90% to make expected progress and 74% to get level 4 in all subjects. I have contacted the NUT about the unbalanced class abilities, just don't want to sound Whiney

    Out of my 5 nqts, one had her time extended. I rarely saw her as she was in ks1 and the deputy head made the decision to extend without letting me know. I was told as a slt person in charge of nqts, I can't be RI on occasion (forget my class simply talked over me during the first observation) and should aim for outstanding in all my teaching.

    My Sen LSA has always been with the class and she was telling me who had been swapped out each year since the teacher had the class, oddly all the level 5s and the quiet children were switched with less able or noisier students.

    The class took till February to manage behaviour wise which seems to have gone unnoticed by the deputy who line manages me! (She forgets she swapped my ppa cover as they wouldn't listen to her!)

    I'm going to give it to October, as I really like my head and the school, I'm just not sure I can put up with it anymore especially feeling incompetent after pm meetings.

    Just hate to think I sound like a complainer

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