Hi, I began a new role in september in middle management in a school that is in notice to improve. On the penultimate day of term my headteacher asked me to attend a meeting (with about twenty minutes notice) and informed me she wasn't happy with my work and would be starting informal capability procedings. To say this was a shock is just an understatement and I was (and still am) absolutely devestated. I have contacted my union but haven't heard back from them due to the christmas holiday, I tried to ring my regional office on Tuesday but the recorded message said they would open on tuesday january 3rd - which is when I'm due back at school. I am desperate for help and advice as I feel very alone. I've had time to reflect over the holidays, as you can imagine it's not been a very restful break and I was very unwell for the first week as well. I have decided I don't have a long term future at the school. I don't like it, didn't even before this news was given to me, but now I feel sick and so, so scared. I have a mortgage - I obviously need an income. The time of year couldn't be worse as there aren't any jobs. I have emailed one school regarding an advert, but it's a good hour and a half away according to routefinder. I'm not a lazy person but I'm very worried about such a long commute and worry about petrol money and car costs as well. However, I may not have a choice if things continue to get worse. My ideal situation would be to leave in september with another job to go to but can I drag the process out for that long? I don't want a gap on my CV. I realise in theory I could leave at easter but barely any jobs are advertised to begin at that time of year (although I'd go for one if one came up of course.) I am just desperate for some advice, reassurance and pointers. I don't feel the capability is at all justified which isn't to say I'm brilliant, I'd happily take advice and support to improve as I genuinely want/wanted to do a good job, for myself and for the children but this hasn't been conducive. I've been trying to do work but have felt so stressed and anxious that every time I've sat at my laptop I've ended up crying and feeling sick. I know that sounds as if I'm making excuses but the only way I've been able to sleep or relax is by blanking out work completely. Anyway to condense my post - what I want to know is, can I leave in august with perhaps an agreed and fair reference, if I agree to leave at the end of the year can they stop capability procedings? I've never been so stressed in my life. Thank you.