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Competency - Help!

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Crowbob, Feb 15, 2011.

  1. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    This will depend upon the facts leading up to your resignation. Simply being put on competency is not grounds for claiming constructive dismissal. You would need to show that your Head breached your contract in an seriousway, that you did not accept that breach and show that resignation was the only option. As somebody else said, proving this can be very difficult. I wish you the best of luck. Get onto your Union ASAP.
     
  2. omardaley

    omardaley New commenter

    Talk to your union asap. Your head is supposed to support you through competency procedure. Mentioning/suggesting resignation is not very supportive. As i already said talk to your union (regional level) - your head may have shot themself in the foot.
     
  3. Sorry to hear about your predicament, Dave. Talk to your union, but it also depends on how much you really want this job. If you go through competency you will still have a job (presuming you don't fail) but you will have to stay in this job for quite a while before you can start looking for another one. If you are fed up with the job anyway, maybe it is worth considering leaving seriously. There is also always the possibility of going off with WRS, if you think things would improve by giving both yourself and school a bit of a break. Depending on how long you have been there, you can have at least 6 months on full pay.
     
  4. ianj6

    ianj6 New commenter

    Get your union involved NOW!
    Have a look on here for how many people successfully complete competency, it very, very rarely happens, so a resignation may be a very good option. If they go for competency, it HAS to be noted on any reference for the next 6 months and after a certain stage 12 months, the Head can skip stages if they want and the "support" can be questionable, if you end up dismissed or resigning before dismissal, you will be reported to the GTCE as well as having no job. Re WRS Heads have come across that little chestnut once or twice before, it's not a good game to start playing unless you're desperate, (and you don't sound desperate.....yet)
    Don't be fooled into believing there is anything fair about the process, if you start playing politics, rules and regulations with Head teachers, you are about to have a nasty awakening!
    If you talk to the union, then they can negotiate a reference that won't mean the end of your career, and perhaps give you breathing space to find a new job.
    If the Head has directly suggested you may like to resign, then that has to be a pretty clear message as to your future at that school.
    Good luck
    Ian

     
  5. I have a similar problem, have had 2 observations judged inadequate. Behaviour management is an issue, all focussed on one child and not the 20+ others who behave perfectly reasonably. And similarly understanding of learning focussed on the ones who 'cant' rather than the rest who have.
    Been put on capability pre formal stages - got to have obs every fortnight for next term - all have to be satisfactory or will move to next and more 'formal' stage
    help and advice please

    Chez
     
  6. becky70

    becky70 Occasional commenter

    Re: the two posters above - to the first of you, your friend's head wants her out and to the second of you, your head wants you out.
    There's no easy answers to it - you can stay but not that many people get through capability/competency procedures.
    You (your friend) need to get the union involved. Some people negotiate a compromise agreement where you leave with a payout and an agreed reference.
    I'd also get looking for other jobs, checking out supply situation in your area etc.
     
  7. becky70

    becky70 Occasional commenter

    A reference where the wording has been agreed with the staff member who will be leaving, a union rep and the HT writing it. It can't be deviated from verbally or in writing. My guess is that other heads can spot them.
    Lots of people come out the other side of this but not often at the same school.


     
  8. ianj6

    ianj6 New commenter

    re an agreed reference, yes Heads can spot wordings in the reference, and there is also the telephone, which, even if they stick to the rules, they can refuse to answer questions, (there is nothing to say they have to lie/cover for you).
    However, it doesn't mean you won't get employed, you may well be offered a 6 month probationary contract, but given the current climate where heads don't clearly know their budget in 6 months, this may make you a more appealing prospect! Which Teacher at the moment would leave a permanent contract for a probationary/temporary one?
    If you/your friend decide to "fight it out", you <u>will</u> go to the formal stage, (not to do this would mean the head admitting they've made a huge mistake), if this happens, there will be no negotiation on the reference, it must be mentioned clearly in any reference given for the next 6 months.
    I like boxing, but I always do it in a ring where we both have to wear gloves. In procedures, they can take their gloves off, they can change how long a round lasts at the drop of a hat, change how many rounds there will be if they think they're doing well, and even stop me from throwing any punches at all. I wouldn't fight in that ring, if you want to, you're a lot braver than me!!
    The procedures aren't fair, they rely on observation which is a very subjective measure. I've known many "good and outstanding" teachers to be threatened/placed on them only to resign and go on to be assistant heads, heads of Faculty etc in other schools and do very, very well.
    Is it time to move on?
    Good luck

     
  9. baitranger

    baitranger Occasional commenter

    I had an agreed reference a few years ago.
    The school wrote a draft first and then I ( and I mean personally, not the union or anyone else) wrote in a few extra sentences here and there, to say exactly what I thought it should say.
    The reference was agreed with no further changes and was accepted without question: I used it to get two permanent posts after I left.
    I have no idea whether anyone phoned to confirm anything, but if they had the school would have been legally obliged to stick to the agreed reference both orally and in writing.
    I wasn't leaving following capability but they weren't unhappy for me to go-but that's another story.
     
  10. So then, here's a question:
    A year ago I was offered a compromise agreement, which I refused. At the same time I was threatened with disciplinary action over a class I had dropped the ball with after 3 years on a competency procedure. This was obviosuly to pressurise me to accept the compromiose agreement and did not work.
    Since that time I have not taught a single lesson and was redeployed to a non teaching role in November.
    I am now being investigated by the GTC with regard to a hearing to determine whether I should be de-registered as a teacher, the outcome of which does not matter as I am not going back to the profession. A major part of their case relies upon the aforementioned class.
    So a year ago I was only incompetent to teach in one school in East Sussex. Since then I have not taught at all due to depressive illness.
    On what logical basis can I be held to now be incompetent to teach in ANY school in England, without my LA being accused of allowing an incompetent teacher to continue teaching (regardless of whether or not I am)?
     
  11. AlwaysAdaptable

    AlwaysAdaptable New commenter

    mr _awkward I thought the GTC couldn't touch any one in your position. Aren't they defunct?. My friend is going through hell, I am not far behind her but in a different school. I think my days too are numbered but I'll have to wait and see. I am up this late because I am still planning for literacy.
     
  12. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    In my opinion, this is the best quote of the year.
     
  13. ianj6

    ianj6 New commenter

    Thanks (I hope!)
    To be clear, I'm saying the guys I'm thinking of where the sort of teachers I'd be delighted if they were stood in front of my child at 9am tommorrow morning. Not that they were incompetent teachers so went on to be managers!!
    I'm of the opinion that these processes are often used by heads to avoid redundancy payments or to remove teachers that aren't fitting in with their "vision".
    The goalposts/measures in the process, at the moment are too elastic for them to be effective in identifying genuinely poor teachers. I feel this is a big reason the GTCE has been so ineffective in the role of removing people who genuinley shouldn't be stood in front of classes. (If you read any of my other posts you will understand the contempt I have for the GTCE)
    Ian
     
  14. Oh they very much can touch me. Any teacher who leaves under circumstances of competency is meant to be referred and any LA that doesn't is in breach of the rules.
    That's something they don't tell you when you are offered a compromise agreement.
    A read of this document from the GTC is quite enlightening:
    http://www.gtce.org.uk/documents/publicationpdfs/cmp_guide0810.pdf
    This is also of interest:
    http://www.gtce.org.uk/documents/publicationpdfs/competence_referrals0210.pdf

     
  15. ianj6

    ianj6 New commenter

    It's not fair, but it is within the rules.
    Just do your best, you can't do any more. They are going to find things to pick up no matter what you do.

    Really sorry to hear about your difficulties, unfortunately they will continue to pull fast ones, it's part of the game.

    Ian
     
  16. Dave85,
    I'm sorry to hear that you are going through this. I was wondering if you
    are a primary or secondary teacher? The reason I ask is that I have found that the majority of teachers who seem to have problems in Primary are men. I believe that sexism is rife in the industry and it isn't fair!
    My own experience was that I left a school at the end of a contract with glowing reports from the SMT. Unfortunately, someone dropped the ball somewhere and everything was attempted to be pinned on me. This resulted in a hell of a year for me.
    Keep us updated. We are thinking of you.
    PS. On a side note, make sure you document everything. Who you speak to and when, what was said. Keep all paperwork. If you can photocopy everything that you can get your hands on. In my case, paperwork disappeared from school shelves and ring binders - luckily it wasn't too important.
    One last piece of advice: DON'T TRUST ANYONE!
     
  17. My sympathies to all on this thread.
    Not wishing to cause any further distress, but this has been my experience too.
    So, as others have said:
    Keep records.
    Inform union at the HIGHEST level.
    Remember that many others have been through this s hit and survived.
    (Bastar ds!)
     
  18. becky70

    becky70 Occasional commenter

    Plenty of female primary teachers are put through competency procedures as well or have other problems such as being bullied.
     
  19. veritytrue

    veritytrue New commenter

    Rubbish! The problem is that men are accepted onto to teaching training without having to meet the same exacting requirements as women in order to raise numbers of men in primary. Often they have a gilded path into employment. It's often unspoken but true nevertheless - too many don't plan, assess or often mark & generally do just a fraction of what their female counterparts do. Eventually it catches up & they're fired or they are either promoted out of the classroom where they still leave everyone else to do all the work.
     
  20. Consignment of geriatric shoemakers.

    Sexist drivel. I think you just proved the complainant's point.[​IMG]
     

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