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Deputising for Head as an Assistant Head

Discussion in 'Senior Leadership Team' started by nancymancey, May 18, 2019.

  1. nancymancey

    nancymancey New commenter

    Hi, if the Head is out for the day, can an Assistant Head be asked to run the school in his absence? Or if they are asked, can they refuse? TIA.
  2. J.M.Powell

    J.M.Powell New commenter

    If there is a deputy, then you'd expect him/her to be asked first, but if not (or deputy is also out) then it is entirely reasonable that an AHT would be left in charge. The role of an AHT is that of a leader and there is an expectation that the person doing that job will step-up to take on tasks that would not be required of a class teacher. I don't think an AHT could refuse to step-up without the risk of their suitability for their role being called into question!
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  3. nancymancey

    nancymancey New commenter

    Thank you for your help - much appreciated.
  4. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Firstly, it depends what your employment conditions say. If on STPCD there are specific rules, if in an academy not using STPCD you need to check what your academy trust's employment contracts for AHT say - consult your union.

    STPCD says broadly that a DHT must act as HT if the HT is temporarily absent from the site but an AHT isn't required to do that. Not unless your own employment contract varies STPCD by adding the requirement for you act as head.

    But from a practical point of view if there is no DHT and it is only for one day then refusing to take on the responsibility is probably a career terminating act in that school. Is the head contactable by mobile if something serious happens?
    Pomza likes this.
  5. nancymancey

    nancymancey New commenter

    Yes they are contactable by phone. There is a little bit more to this that I don’t really want to go into, but thank you both for your help. Much appreciated.
  6. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    I know of schools with a head in charge of three schools. The assistant heads are in day to day charge in her absence. She is still the headteacher and makes all the strategic decisions and picks up difficult issues. Maybe this is the kind of regular situation you are envisaging? If so, it’s done in many, many schools. Just make sure you refer problems onwards to him/her.

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