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Dear Theo, frightened of bad reference

Discussion in 'Jobseekers' started by Mariecapper, Mar 11, 2012.

  1. Mariecapper

    Mariecapper New commenter

    Dear theo,
    First of all I'm typing this on my phone so apologies for any errors.
    I'm starting to apply for jobs after four years in my current school. I always came out satisfactory in formal lesson observations because my nerves got the better of me. I did a lot of work on this and in Ofsted in November I got Good which I felt was much more of a reflection of me.

    Six weeks ago I was burgled and it's had a rather detrimental
    effect on many parts of my life, infusing my teaching-mainly due to not sleeping. I am seeing a counsellor about it but didn't tell my head teacher as I felt it is a personal issue and she won't want an excuse.

    As I'm in y6 she has been coming in to both classes and a couple weeks ago she said she was concerned as the couple of lessons she sat in on were inadequate as I didn't model them - I had misinterpreted my idea of revision and I put my hands up as I thought that revision should be to
    See what they already know but because I have a weak class se said I should
    Still be modelling and not giving them level
    five stuff. She asked me to hand in my plans fr the last couple weeks and both times she said she was much happier with the pitch of the lessons and when she asked how I planned to model my lesson tomorrow I was able to show her and she was happy with it. I'm taking everything on that she said as I want her to see its a blip and not my standard practice-which has never been the case before, but I dot want to make excuses for it as bottom line she is checking I'm doing my job.

    The literacy coordinator has been coming in now to start helping our kids with literacy stuff too and she said informally 'yeah that was a good lesson and they produced some good work'.

    Anyway, now I'm terrified she can give me a bad reference and ruin my chances of being able to relocate to be closer to my family which I need to do now as the house I live in frightens me after what happened.

    I'm meeting with her Tuesday morning as my deputy knows I'm starting to look around and told the head with my permission and I'm just giving the head the details of why I'm looking elsewhere and explaining its nothing personal to the school.

    Is there a way I can say 'i hope I can get your support if I find a new school' and 'i want to leave here on good terms'-have I now ruined things and any chances to move on? I really need some advice as its doing my head in and making me a bit of a nervous wreck because if I can't get a reasonable reference from her then I'll be stuffed.
     
  2. Mariecapper

    Mariecapper New commenter

    Dear theo,
    First of all I'm typing this on my phone so apologies for any errors.
    I'm starting to apply for jobs after four years in my current school. I always came out satisfactory in formal lesson observations because my nerves got the better of me. I did a lot of work on this and in Ofsted in November I got Good which I felt was much more of a reflection of me.

    Six weeks ago I was burgled and it's had a rather detrimental
    effect on many parts of my life, infusing my teaching-mainly due to not sleeping. I am seeing a counsellor about it but didn't tell my head teacher as I felt it is a personal issue and she won't want an excuse.

    As I'm in y6 she has been coming in to both classes and a couple weeks ago she said she was concerned as the couple of lessons she sat in on were inadequate as I didn't model them - I had misinterpreted my idea of revision and I put my hands up as I thought that revision should be to
    See what they already know but because I have a weak class se said I should
    Still be modelling and not giving them level
    five stuff. She asked me to hand in my plans fr the last couple weeks and both times she said she was much happier with the pitch of the lessons and when she asked how I planned to model my lesson tomorrow I was able to show her and she was happy with it. I'm taking everything on that she said as I want her to see its a blip and not my standard practice-which has never been the case before, but I dot want to make excuses for it as bottom line she is checking I'm doing my job.

    The literacy coordinator has been coming in now to start helping our kids with literacy stuff too and she said informally 'yeah that was a good lesson and they produced some good work'.

    Anyway, now I'm terrified she can give me a bad reference and ruin my chances of being able to relocate to be closer to my family which I need to do now as the house I live in frightens me after what happened.

    I'm meeting with her Tuesday morning as my deputy knows I'm starting to look around and told the head with my permission and I'm just giving the head the details of why I'm looking elsewhere and explaining its nothing personal to the school.

    Is there a way I can say 'i hope I can get your support if I find a new school' and 'i want to leave here on good terms'-have I now ruined things and any chances to move on? I really need some advice as its doing my head in and making me a bit of a nervous wreck because if I can't get a reasonable reference from her then I'll be stuffed.
     
  3. Your head doesn't sound unreasonable. Perhaps if you stopped worrying that people will think you are making excuses and told her what is going on she would be more understanding. We are all humans and our teaching is affected by our personal lives. My head, at my school, knows about the difficulties I've had recently and how I have been struggling personally. I still turn up to work every day and do my best but it was no secret that before half-term, I was hanging on to my sanity by my finger nails. When I told her I was looking for another job she understood and told me that she saw that it was for the best. I know she has given me a good reference.
     
  4. Mariecapper

    Mariecapper New commenter

    I'm talking to her Tuesday to explain everything-she has been really hard to catch up with as she is so busy.

    I am very conscious I'm not handing in my notice unless I have something to go to. I have heard of things called capability procedures and she has never mentioned that, nothing has been put in writing, it's just been her talking to me initially, me supplying her with my planning and her looking through it and making sure she is happy with the pitch which for the last two weeks she has been since she initially talked to me. I just hope it doesn't affect my chances to look elsewhere.

    It doesn't help I'm getting g married in three weeks and I'm getting rather stresse about that too-bit of a year so far!
     
  5. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    You sounded really stressed in your posts - and then I saw that!
    Of course you are stressed - all the stress of the wedding on top of the horrid situation at home and then the worry of the observations!
    Seems tp me that you have done exceedingly well to turn around your teaching in such a short time - and in such difficult circumstances too! Well done for that.
    I don't think that you need worry about a poor reference - you are doing fine now.
    I suggest that on Tuesday you go in and do NOT ask outright for a good reference.
    Go in and :
    • thank the Head for her support recently,
    • say that you really appreciate the tips that you have had that have enables you to do so much better for the children.
    • Say that you haven't mentioned it before as you didn't want to mix your private and professional lives, but that you have been traumatised by the recent burglary and that has been the reason (a) that you have been temporarily under par in teaching, but thanks to her that has been solved and (b) that you are job hunting because you need to get away from the district now because of the awful memories.
    • Say you will very much miss working with her and the rest of the great team, will be sorry to leave, but that the need to put distance between this terrible event makes it very necessary.
    • Say you would like to thank her in advance for supporting you, as you know she is busy and will have to give up her time to write the reference.
    Best wishes for the wedding and the job hunting - I'm sure both will go fine!
    _______________________________________
    TheoGriff. Member of the TES Careers Advice Service.
    I do Application and Interview one-to-ones, and also contribute to the Job Application Seminars. We look at application letters, executive summaries and interviews, with practical exercises that people really appreciate.
    I shall be doing the Moving into Headship or SLT seminar on Saturday 17th March.
    www.tesweekendworkshop90.eventbrite.com
     

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