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Capability

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by dcullender14, Jan 21, 2019.

  1. dcullender14

    dcullender14 New commenter

    I was on an informal support plan before Xmas. Due to one observation they have stated I haven’t got better and that’ll be put back on it and then if I don’t improve it’ll be capability.

    If I resign now, whilst I’m applying for current jobs... (I’m sure I’ll have to work my notice period for six weeks anyway) what do I say during interviews etc, if I have them after I have resigned and I am no longer working at that school ?
     
  2. Presleygirl

    Presleygirl Occasional commenter

    First of all ring the union, and listen to them. Do not resign until you have spoken to them. Nothing is informal...... you don’t want to be put on a form capability plan as that will be referred to in any reference and the application asks about safeguarding and capability.

    First of all speak to your union, keep notes of meetings, emails etc
     
  3. Progressnerd

    Progressnerd Occasional commenter

    Don't resign. Apply for jobs and hope you get another one. If you don't get another job and they are going to '''formal" then you need to get the Union to negotiate a settlement agreement instead which means you leave but with an agreed referemce.
     
  4. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Star commenter

    Hang on, are you saying that you were on an informal support plan before Xmas and got off it by passing but have now had another observation and are now deemed to be in need of another support plan?
     
  5. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    Somewhere on the school intranet is the Capability policy. Suggest you read through that, your union will want to look at it anyway, and that might clear up the process,

    Capability is an issue when it gets to 'formal' and informal is not worth putting on a reference. Presumably if you got off it once you can do it again. That is, if you can be bothered with this hoop-jumping.

    There is a recruitment/retention crisis so this is not the problem at interviews that it might be. If the new head only has you to look at then it's down to your abilities, not another head's perception. Also your school might already be noted in the area as driving staff out which means it's not even a reflection on your abilities.
     
  6. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    There's the chance that stating now that you will leave at Easter will 'magic away' all the capability procedures. But I would perhaps play that card just as they are about to start formal if it gets to that stage. Union will probably advise best
     
  7. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Star commenter

    If this is the case I would mention harassment when you talk to your union.
     
    mothergoose2013 likes this.
  8. Curae

    Curae Star commenter

    Exactly my thoughts !
     
  9. Progressnerd

    Progressnerd Occasional commenter

    Warning about this - some schools still continue the 'support' process even when they know you're leaving as a way of making your remaining days there a misery. This happened to me - I got another job but they still continued to observe me for a bit for a bit of additional spite.
     
  10. Presleygirl

    Presleygirl Occasional commenter

    Talk to your union about what happens next .....
     
  11. keyboard2

    keyboard2 Established commenter

    I'm sorry this is happening to you. It's not easy (I have supported colleagues through this process, sometimes formally but mainly informally).

    Management often like to intimidate teachers with formality. Don't be intimidated. Words and phrases such as "capability" and "settlement agreement" are designed to confuse and threaten.

    In my experience, capability is usually used against older teachers who are considered to be too old, too expensive and/or pro union.

    Settlement agreements are ten a penny nowadays. I know of at least five ex colleagues who left our school after signing one of these documents. Your union will negotiate a fee, a positive reference, etc.

    A little tip although you may wish to ignore: when I have supported colleagues in meetings, I have recorded the meeting on a phone. I appreciate this is a little duplicitous, but on one occasion it was VERY useful.

    Do what's needed. Look after yourself.
     
    TEA2111, agathamorse and JohnJCazorla like this.
  12. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    Good for a clear record of what was said in what context but I'm really unsure about how you can use it. There are probably excessive rules against recording on non-school equipment to cover all safeguarding possibilities and you could fall foul of these. As a rep then you could easily have a notepad out and record anything verbatim, even to the extent of "Could you repeat that please so I can be sure I have it correctly?"
     
  13. Presleygirl

    Presleygirl Occasional commenter

    Writing notes or someone else doing on your behalf works a treat
     
  14. keyboard2

    keyboard2 Established commenter

    The problem with notes is they can be quickly dismissed. It's not evidence, but a personal record of a conversation/meeting.

    I have recorded meetings and have evidence of words that were subsequently denied, despite being recorded on paper.

    It's a shame that one would have to do this, but needs must when a colleague's job is on the line.
     
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  15. keyboard2

    keyboard2 Established commenter

    It perfectly legal to record a meeting. We checked.

    Sure. I have done this but one head disputed our notes because he had been "caught out" telling lies. Next meeting? We recorded every single word. It was VERY useful.
     
    JohnJCazorla and agathamorse like this.
  16. JohnJCazorla

    JohnJCazorla Star commenter

    At what stage were these notes 'dismissed'? I agree that The Donald would dismiss a video recording in any meeting that suited him but that isn't where the notes are useful.

    You could be asked in an employment tribunal and be asked,
    "How can you be sure that this was said, it was over a year ago?"

    The answer is,
    "I took notes at the time of the meeting, I wrote these down immediately as they were said. ' The time and date of the meeting is recorded here. I added to these notes an hour later here, I recorded the time and date. I have not changed them since"

    These notes are contemporaneous and highly useful at the legal stage not much use before then apart from the certainty they will count.
     
    mothergoose2013 and agathamorse like this.
  17. keyboard2

    keyboard2 Established commenter

    During the meeting. He, the head, argued our written records were not correct. They were.

    A tape recording of the next meeting did the trick. I'd do it again. The colleague saved her job.
     
    agathamorse and JohnJCazorla like this.
  18. AnotherDayTowardsRetirement

    AnotherDayTowardsRetirement Occasional commenter

    Good advice regarding recording meetings. I did this as a matter of course when challenging a disciplinary (unfair in my opinion) with an inexperienced, awkward Head who denied saying a whole host of things despite 3 witnesses confirming he had said them. The Head used denial as a staling tactic, implying that all of the others present in a meeting (union rep and a witness and myself) had all misheard him. The Head also disputed our integrity by claiming we had all colluded to say one thing when in reality he’d said another. Next meeting I recorded it on my phone (hidden in my pocket) without him knowing. He produced offfical minutes which were unrepresentative in too many places about the true meetng conversations and then denied our claims that he’d altered the minutes. I took the matter to a 1-2-1 grievance meeting with the Chair of Governors where I showed the minutes, played my recording and showed where both differed. I did not win my disciplinary grievance (it was heard by another SLT member) but theHead left the school at the end of term and has not worked in education since. Covert recording works !
     
    agathamorse and TEA2111 like this.
  19. TEA2111

    TEA2111 Established commenter

    I have experienced a meeting where the minutes did not tally up with what was said. I was too trusting and naïve. Lesson learnt: ALWAYS record.
     
    agathamorse likes this.

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