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Blocked from teaching

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by jg4428, Apr 5, 2017.

  1. jg4428

    jg4428 New commenter

    Hi All

    I'd appreciate any advice you can give. I'm an NQT who has completed the first term (no issues with my teaching) and moved schools. After 5 weeks in my new school I was observed for half a lesson (30 minutes) and told I would get feedback on the following day. Sure enough, the NQT training manager came to talk to me the next day. She handed me a letter telling me that my teaching was not good enough and I would be fired if I did not improve. I was then informed that I would almost certainly never pass my third term (which I haven't started yet). What an earth can I do? I don't feel I will get a fair chance of passing my NQT year at my current school. But I can hardly move again.

    I've since interviewed at other schools where my observations have been rated as 'good'. However, they don't want to risk taking on someone that will fail their NQT year (I've been honest with the schools and told them my issue).

    Any ideas?
  2. gwest91

    gwest91 New commenter

    Speak to the NQT coordinator for the local authority immediately! They have clearly not given you enough support. You have only just started teaching the idea is that you're not necessarily going to get it right first time and they should be telling you that it's ok and giving you the support to succeed not immediately threatening to fire you! I would definitely be looking to move schools. I can see why you're reluctant to do so but I think this would be best for you to be given a fair chance at succeeding. When applying to other schools by all means be honest but think about how you phrase it. Simply explain that you are looking to move to a school that will provide you with more support so you can reach your full potential.
  3. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    I had a similar situation last year as an NQT - told after the Feb half term they thought I'd fail the third term, even though only half way through the NQT year. I resigned at that point, and because of that my induction stopped immediately, even though I continued working at the school until a later date that suited them. This meant I had 2 terms remaining, even though I worked almost 3 at that school, which I've now passed at a new school.

    As soon as your school decided you were not making progress towards the standards they should have advised the LA named person (NQT coordinator) - did this not happen? That person should then have come into school, and talked to you, your mentor, and your school's NQT coordinator; following this, they should have helped the school to devise an action plan to support you.

    From your post it seems that the decision to deem you 'not making progress towards the standards' has come out of the blue, and you do not seem to have had a meeting with the LA named person - this sets off alarm bells, as it suggests that your school is not following the correct induction procedures. Have you been having weekly mentor meetings? Have you had regular feedback on your teaching? Have you been given targets?

    You need to contact the LA named person. Tell them everything. Contact your union as well. Tell them everything.

    The named person at the LA may be able to extend your induction if they feel your circumstances merit it. Your union will probably advise you to negotiate an early release from your contact, in order to avoid failing the NQT year.

    Sorry to be blunt, but it's a shame you did not seek advice before now, as if you had resigned during term 2 then your induction would have stopped, as mine did, and you would still have 2 terms remaining, as I did.

    Your best bet is to leave early, then spend some time doing supply. You can complete your final term of induction whilst on supply, as long as you remain in one school for at least one term. Make sure it's a nice, supportive school though. You could also consider maternity cover, as I did.

    Moving forward, I would not 'be honest with the schools and tell them my issues' at interview, as it's hard to do that without sounding like you're insulting your school, and that will give a bad impression. Instead, leave your current school, and if you apply for new permanent roles simply state that 'I am seeking a supportive department where I can complete the remainder of my NQT Induction', and do not go into detail. At interview they will ask what aspect of your teaching is a concern, and decide whether or not they can support you; if your issue is behaviour management, then issues can be expected. If you issues are multiple and serious, then yes, you will struggle to get a new role, which is why supply may be a good route - build up confidence and experience.
    secretsiren and (deleted member) like this.
  4. jg4428

    jg4428 New commenter

    Thanks for your advice. I will contact my LA and union straight away.
  5. secretsiren

    secretsiren Star commenter

    Blueskydreaming has given excellent advice about precisely what to do.

    I too would avoid telling schools up front about your issues. Remember that while you may not be able to pass at your current school (and frankly, telling someone they're failing after a single half hour observation speaks volumes about their capability - they are shoddy at best and laughably incompetent at their worst) you may well be in a better position with a different school with a different level of support (I use the word 'support' but your current school don't seem to have offered you any!). If the new school asks about the move, be diplomatic but reticent: you need a change to a smaller/larger department to get a better idea of how a smaller/larger school works or because you have heard good things about their induction programme or they have an excellent reputation or...
    blueskydreaming likes this.
  6. welshwizard

    welshwizard Established commenter Forum guide

    Firstly you do not fail an induction based on one observation. Induction assessment involves more than just that. You do not fail a term it is the whole period of induction that needs to be reviewed and passed. The school has not followed statutory guidance. Where there are issues with NQT performance these are discussed and a plan to support and address these concerns is put in place. The plan is monitored and then reviewed formally. If you have concerns about the quality of the induction you are receiving then consult the named contact at the Appropriate Body for the school. Talk with your Union for support.
    Was your second assessment not meeting standards? What were your comments when you signed it?
    It is imperative that clear support is provided summer term to allow you every chance to meet standards by the time of the last assessment.
    wanet likes this.

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