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Dear James, I have a meeting tomorrow to failed???

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by biscuitmonster13, Apr 12, 2011.

  1. Dear James, I really need advice on what the I should do next, I completed pgce last year and have been trying to complete my NQT program. Prior to starting my job my child was diagnosed with a disability. I have had to have time off during the past 18 mths as the school keep extending my NQT term. I understand that to meet the Standards I have to be in school every day. But sometimes this is difficult when we have appointments or she is ill. I have no issue in constantly being extended but I'm never told until the last week of the term. I asked for my training record and nobody had a copy until I was given a piece of paper last week and told they only hadinformation for term 1. I was asked to gather evidence for 5 targets that were a 3 then as all the rest were 1's. I have consistently been told any more time off and I will be failed, I have been sent to occupational health 3 times with the last one asking if I was fit to teach due to my time off with my daughter.
    All my obs have been fantastic until the last one where I was given no choice of time or class, SMT choose the only difficult class I have and one which has a break in the middle and lots of challenging puils in which I have support except for that lesson. I was speaking to smt today as to when Im supposed to finish my NQT, as my belief was this friday...She then informed me that I had a bad lesson so maybe not.
    As im constantly warned about time off, so I havent taken time to go to the doctors for myself, as Im worried they may make me take time off and if its over 5 days I was told that I would fail. I have had to take mon off due to hurting my back, I knew that was my 5 days done and I went in today and was sent home and rung at the end of the day. Basically to ask if I will be in tomorrow, I can barely move but feel that I have to go in as they are holding my NQT status over me. Basically I was told because I had been over my 5 days it was over. My mother died at xmas and funeral was in january but I didnt go because it would eat into my days, I also had to be called from work twice due to my daughter been rushed to hosital having an epileptic fit. Also I have taken puils out on 2 tris and told these also were included in my time off.
    I need clarification on the NQT training program if they are failing me...nobody from education authority has been to see me, all my end of term assesments have said I have passed but I'm given no clarification on how Im suposed to be signed off as the school just extend it as if they are wanting me to fail. There are norecords of my training at the school but there is a record for all other NQT's.
    Please help as they are making me feel as though I cant be a good teacher because my child has a disability.
  2. Hi
    I can see that this is very stressful and difficult for you. There are some things that need to be clarified over your period of induction. You must also try to separate the induction year from the issue of your daughter's health and welfare. While one may impact on the other they are two separate issues. The time off for your daughter and how this is handled by the school is different from your progress on induction and ability to meet the standards.
    A school does not have the authority to extend an induction period. Only the local authority can do this and under certain circumstances. During the induction year a NQT can only accumulate an absence of up to 29 days across the whole year. If you have had 30 days or more accumulated absence then In this instance the LA has to extend probabtion by law.
    The only other reasons for extension are a fail by the NQT who then appeals and is given an extension to try and meet the standards, or a failure on the part of the school to properly conduct the induction period or complete the necessary paperwork.
    If your time out with pupils is part of your work then this cannot be counted as 'time off' as you are doing your job. If the school did not wish you to be accompanying the pupils then they could have delegated another member of staff to accompany the pupils.
    If the school's assessment is that you are not making satisfactory progress then this must be evidenced and there must be involvement of the LA to moderate this judgement and after that there must be a support plan. You must work towards the agreed targets and only if this fails would the school, in the final third term, recommend a fail. The LA would them assess the evidence and decide if the NQT passes or fails. If it is a fail then the NQT has the right to an appeal and may be granted a further period to meet the standards.
    The school does not decide on a pass or fail, but the LA. The school can only make a recommendation to the LA. You should have copies of all the assessments and paperwoerk pertaining to your induction and in your assessments in terms 1 and 2 you should have been invited to a meeting, agreed the report and signed - adding any comments that you wish to add. These should be lodged with the LA.
    My advice is:
    1. Contact your union for specific help and advice. They can assess your case and offer practical help and represent you at meetings etc.
    2. Ask the school for copies of all the paperwork pertaining to your induction period (if you have done this and it has not happened ask again in writing and request an explanation for any lack of paperwork).
    3. Contact the LA NQT adviser - you should have been given details of who this is and ask them for any copies of reports they have and for any rulings they have/have not made about extending your probation and on what basis the rulings were made.
    4. If you are able gather a portfoiio of evidence against each of the induction standards that show that you are meeting the standard (leave this to last in case the situation is resolved)
    Do read the statutory guidelines carefully and ensure that you have met your obligations anbd responsibilities and then check that the school, mentor etc have met theirs.
    The guidance can be found here:

  3. Hi
    Your union should not abandon you at this time. Contact the regional office or the head office and outline the case. State that the local rep cannot/will not help and ask for more senior input.

    If you met all the standards at the end of term three then the school should have completed your induction. You MUST contact the LA adviser - you have a right to do this and get them on the case. A school CANNOT extend your induction, the head is acting beyond their legal powers to do this.

    In my view what should happen is that the LA should review the case and all the paperwork and decide on induction. That should be decided on how you would have been assessed at the point when your induction should have ended. The LA is the body that has the power to decide not the school. What may have happened subsequent to this is a different matter and should be treated separately.

    You must seek specialist help and advice and you pay your union fees for such help. Just because the local rep doesn't know what to do doesn't mean that you should be abandoned. What the rep should have done is consult with the region or head office.

    From what you write the school seems to be retrospectively using the current situation against you to prevent passing induction when they should have settled the process a long time ago. If they feel that the are other issues now then that is a different process from passing induction. Again, you must get help from the union at at a regional or national level.


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