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Didn't pass probation...

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Oliviaa91, Sep 16, 2019.

  1. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Hi all,

    So i got a job as a T.A and it ended up being awful.
    Awful staff and SLT's...

    I'm a trained primary teacher but haven't taught, the head and SLT told me it would be easy enough going into secondary and it would be my foot back in the door after having a child and a break from education.
    It wasn't.

    They decided after a few weeks that i was either too assertive or not assertive enough, there were other problems with other t.a.s apparently ganging up on other members of staff and because i sat near them they said it was me coercing the others to be horrible!

    So long story short, they didn't pass my probation and ended my contact.
    Now i'm looking for other things instead and it asks me if i've ever been dismissed, does this now technically mean i've been dismissed?

    If so, that's definitely ruined my chances for the future.. :(

    Any advice welcome :) x
  2. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Did you join a Union? They would be best to advise you. FWIW l don't think you were dismissed, simply your contract ended. But I'd ask your Union.
  3. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Hi Frank,

    Thanks so much for taking the time to reply, and thanks for the suggestion on ringing my union!
    I rang the union who said i needed the last correspondence i was sent stating my contract had finished, she said if it said i was dismissed then i would have to declare it but it says my probationary period was terminated and i would not be offered a permanent post.
    I called them back once i had the exact wording and she said because my contact was terminated, i have been dismissed and have to declare this.

    So that's my chances essentially down the drain, i don't think any school will bother with an application where it says they've been dismissed :(

    Gutted..! x
  4. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Sorry to hear that...

    However I'd get back to your Union, and ask them for advice as regards your reference. From what you've said you haven't done anything wrong - the most that can be said is that either your face didn't fit or you've failed to reach the required standard - and (crucially) there are no safeguarding issues. A reference should include that.

    PS I'd also ask the Union about whether you were supported enough during your probationary period...If not, then the school need to shoulder some of the responsibility.
  5. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Ah see this is where it gets hairy.
    In order for them to get rid of me, they had to place me in a situation that made me look bad.
    So I was in a hub with other kids who were pretty giddy on the last day of term and the other t.a.s were coercing them to have a laugh by playing a prank on their teacher. I asked if this was usual as it seemed very hectic and they said yes it was all part of the last day.
    They used this against me and said because I had a degree I outranked the other experienced t.a.s in the room and I should have stopped everything so I had a 'severe lack of judgement' which is also on the letter.

    I completely agree I didn't get any support and guidance during my time there, but they expected me to know everything after a 5 year gap from university and no actual work experience other than placements 5-10 years ago as part of my degree.

    I was well and truly done over :( x
  6. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    I’m a little confused! If you are on a TA contract, how are you a probationary teacher? Have you had an NQT year at this school?

    It sounds like you haven’t failed anything, just not had a temporary contract renewed and they just gave a reason why they didn’t renew it.

    grumpydogwoman and phlogiston like this.
  7. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Hi Dexter,

    I was given a job as a T.A. which was meant to be permanent but they terminated my probation because of the above :(
  8. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    The letter stating your contract was terminated cites a severe lack of judgement in your part, and interestingly in your opening post you state that the staff in the school were awful, as well as SLT. Whatever mysterious event could fill the void of our knowledge between the two positions, I'd say you are better off out of there.
    Burnt bridges are not great, but if you now have a string of burned bridges, it ought to lead to some self reflection-you need to earn a crust somehow.
  9. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    I don't know what to make of this, TBH.

    When I was teaching, I think I'd have blown a fuse if any TAs coerced pupils into playing a prank on me...Sounds like a pretty awful school...
  10. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Hi Frank and SBK,

    It really was awful, just everything about it. They even kept the other t.a.s on and told them (about me being let go) 'that's what will happen if you cross us again..' so i was used for effect.. :(

    I've joined supply again as a t.a. and i'm still looking for jobs, there's been a few where it doesn't ask if i've been dismissed from a role previously and i'm in two minds whether to not mention it at all in this case? :eek:
  11. install

    install Star commenter

    Looking at your posting history you have had quite a few dilemmas. And sometimes that is life.But you have got through it. I wonder if you need to work more on being more positive and building up your confidence levels because that is what keeps holding you back I think.

    We all learn from set backs and mistakes rather than allow them to weigh us down. And you need to move forward. Maybe look for jobs outside of teaching that you will enjoy more.
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2019
    Laphroig and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  12. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Having a few dilemmas, Install, surely would give you more reason to try and less reason to give up?

    Yes i have confidence issues, if you've trawled through my posts you'll understand why surely, and surely it's understandable? That's also no reason to give up.

    I have tried several jobs outside of education, all of which i haven't had the same feeling i get when i help children to learn and understand, surely that's a sign to continue trying?

    I do agree that i feel my confidence holds me back, however there's not really any CPD or quick fix for that other than trying to find a place i enjoy to boost my confidence again. You're right, i've got through everything else, i can get over this somehow, i'm sure.

    Thanks for your comment :)
  13. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    So the person who is on probation due to their newness/inexperience is supposed to take charge of the established staff? You queried it, but it seems understandable that you didn't fight it.

    You've been used as a scapegoat, probably because it was easier to use you than any of the others.

    Probably not much you can do - I hope you find the school for you soon.
  14. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    I definitely did query this at the meeting and they said it didn't matter and they didn't care and that I was being let go.

    She even told me in the meeting that the other t.a.s involved were to complicated to sack so she'd be telling them off instead :(

    I've got a recruitment meeting today for supply work so hopefully I'll get something else through long term supply rather than applying direct.
    Hopefully I'll show them I can do the job instead of trying to convince people through a paper document which doesn't tell them anything about me other than it's been complicated...

    Hopefully I'll get a chance to do it some day :) x
  15. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I think that's the best way forward. Secure work through supply and prove your worth. Definitely! Build a good reputation in one or two schools and the rest should recede into history.

    All I would advise is that you very much keep yourself to yourself. Don't align yourself with teachers or TAs. See if you can find a classroom in which to have your lunch. Tell everyone you need the time because you have needy relatives and a friend with marital trouble and they rely on you to encourage them through the day. Say it's complicated. I very much recommend a detached approach. Many people who are drawn to work in schools are relentlessly gregarious but we all know what happens if someone falls out of favour for the most absurd of reasons. You're out!

    I think you should learn to keep clear.
    corgie11, caress, yoda92 and 2 others like this.
  16. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    Definitely agreed.
    I'm renowned for being very friendly and chatty with others and maybe I came across as too naïve and a pushover..

    I'll definitely start keeping myself to myself. But if I don't get any supply work soon I'll have to take another job and just call this phase in my life a dream I couldn't pursue..
    caress likes this.
  17. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Best wishes to you.
    agathamorse and Oliviaa91 like this.
  18. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    Thank you for clarifying. I was getting mixed up between a probationary teacher (NQT) and a probationary period!
    Sounds like they’ve just come up with excuses to let you go. Usually, they give you a chance to resign before making you go through a meeting where you can question their judgements (but you know they won’t accept them).
    Keep your head up, move on. You said it was awful there anyway! Find something better! And good luck
    peter12171 and agathamorse like this.
  19. Oliviaa91

    Oliviaa91 New commenter

    That's what I was cross about that I didn't get a chance to resign!
    It's rubbish but hopefully someone else will give me a chance!
    Thanks for your comments xx
    DexterDexter likes this.
  20. Pomza

    Pomza Star commenter

    Dismissal within a probationary period is still dismissal, so a reference will be a problem.

    Do a few days/weeks work one or two other schools via an agency, then use those as references instead when applying for permanent posts.

    You can also use the university you did your teaching qualification with, any schools you completed placements at, plus any other non-education based employer you have had.

    You’ll be fine.

    Unusual to find a school where all staff and leaders are as terrible as you describe though - maybe carefully consider everything that happened and whether to work education is really what you want.

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