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How long to keep evidence?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by BetterNow, Nov 7, 2018.

  1. BetterNow

    BetterNow Occasional commenter

    i don’t want to give too much detail. I left a post due to being pushed out. I kept a lot of evidence that proved the lies that were told about me (when you’re observed, they can say what the like about the lesson - even make up evidence against you and there’s no way you can dispute it). However other lies are very easily proven.

    I have nothing but negative evidence against me from observations and drop ins, but I do have all the good observations and good feedback from prior to that particular head arriving at the school.

    I also have my notes where I can prove (as much as possible) that they had it in for me (they tried to pin bad behaviour from a whole year group on my 'poor classroom management', yet I only taught that year group for half an afternoon a week and the behaviour was no different between me and the other teachers.) But I have notes documenting all the 'realities' behind the myths.

    All of the evidence I collected feels like a losing battle, yet I can’t move on. (All of my teaching graded graded unsatisfactory based in a 10 minute pop in where they didn’t see AFL - come in another time and they would have, but as they 'didn’t see it they couldn’t grade it as anything other than unsatisfactory '.

    I have a lot of evidence, but I’ve moved on now. I handed in my notice and am living hand to mouth, but mentally I am so much better.

    This pile of evidence/ paperwork makes me sick whenever I look at it. It brings it all back. I really want to burn the lot of it, but something is stopping me. How long should I keep it? I built it all up to file a grievance (the union thought I had enough to use), but the head moved on. However, she left a file on me full of evidence as to how unsatisfactory I was, which the. Ew head said he had no reason not to believe and he triggered steps towards capability and all that entails. My mental health was not strong enough to fight over again, so I left.

    Now I feel strong enough to fight again, but I just want to move in with my life. I don’t want my past to bite me again in the future. But I want to put the past behind me.

    Sorry this has ended up as a ramble. I hope it makes sense overall. Can I burn the paperwork or should I keep it? I left nearly two years ago now, but haven’t yet secured a 'proper' job again.
  2. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    Scan it or photograph it and then store it in the cloud, cd, memory stick or somewhere obscure on your computer. That way you don't have to keep looking at it and churning up unpleasant memories but you still have access to it if you need it in the future.
  3. BehaviourQueen

    BehaviourQueen New commenter

    This has obviously had a great impact on your life, and to feel like this after two years is not good. Would it be possible for you to go and get counselling to speak about all of this to see if you can draw a line and get on with the rest of your life. To keep things bottled up is not healthy and I can’t imagine what you are going through. For me, getting on with the rest of my life would be the most important thing. So I would burn what you have. I’m not sure I could go through a tribunal bringing up all of the past. I am sure that your union will give you some advice, and may help you get some kind of talking therapy. I have been in a similar situation, and thanks to the techniques that the counsellor has given me, I am able to draw a line and to get back into the classroom again. I feel no ill will or malice towards those who made up such lies about me, and I have faith that karma will come around at some point.

    I wish you luck in whatever you choose to do.
    phlogiston and JohnJCazorla like this.
  4. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I threw mine in the rubbish tip (thing they are called recycling plants or some such these days) when I knew I'd no longer need the agreed reference.

    It was a good day! :)
    phlogiston, nomad and Flanks like this.
  5. Pomza

    Pomza Star commenter

    Do it then.

    There is no value in keeping any of it - nobody will ever want to see it.
    schoolsout4summer and phlogiston like this.
  6. becky70

    becky70 Occasional commenter

    Unless you are planning legal action against your old school I can't see any use for it. Been there, seen it, got the T-shirt. I would burn it or shred it asap for the sake of your mental health. It's not going to help you secure what you describe as a proper job. I got one of those through supply and that is probably your best route. It took a while for me, too, but I got there in the end. Good luck!
    phlogiston and JohnJCazorla like this.
  7. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    If you might use it, lock it up in a store cupboard. If not, its not too late to celebrate Guy Fawkes Night.
    jlishman2158 and phlogiston like this.
  8. Girlfromthenorthcountry

    Girlfromthenorthcountry New commenter

    We lit a fire and burnt all the paperwork a few weeks after my horrible experience had been finalised. We drank wine, smoked cigars and toasted the future!

    After having a particularly 'bonkers' episode my husband suggested I speak to a counsellor - which was really helpful in putting an end to something that was so awful.

    All the best with however you need to 'close' it.
  9. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    "But something is stopping me"
    I think you know exactly what is stopping you. You feel wronged and there has not been a satisfactory outcome.
    You have two choices - either chuck it all out and forget about it or do something with it.
    I think the reason for you posting this is because deep down you want to do something about it and you want to put right the wrong that has been done to you.
    If this is the case then you could either contact your Union if you are still a member and ask if they will support you or you could go an get a free initial session with an employment solicitor to see if you have a case against your former employer. It doesn't matter that the Head has moved on, the school may still be liable.
    What's stopping you? Fear? Not feeling confident about tackling it? But what's the worst that could happen?

    It sounds like your career has taken a downturn as you say you haven't got a "proper" job yet. So what do you have to lose? My advice would,be to go for an initial session with a solicitor and if you don't have a case then so be it, chuck it all out and move on. But you just never know.
  10. peapicker

    peapicker Star commenter

    The OP is long out of time to be able to take any action against the school, unless you have a personal injury claim or a claim under the Protection from Harassment Act, which it doesn't look to me that you do. Bin it and move on.
    tonymars, JohnJCazorla and Pomza like this.
  11. livingstone83

    livingstone83 Occasional commenter

    Pi55 on it. Then burn it.
  12. mothorchid

    mothorchid Star commenter

    I suspect the time for making a legal claim is past, as @peapicker says, but I am not an expert. However, I think the "stuff" is holding you back as far as your mental health goes. Otherwise, unless you are still able to make some sort of claim, and you want to do so, what is it all for?
    Is this the kind of thing you really need in your life? Perhaps have a look through it one last time, than decide whether to keep a few of the nice things about your teaching, as boosters. And get rid of the rest. It sounds as if it is simply transmitting negative energy into your life.
    henrypm0 and phlogiston like this.
  13. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I think you know that legal redress is unlikely to appear. Your word against the head's - no contest.
    I think you know that you want to move on with life - maybe you need to look at a different way to use your skills to benefit society and / or the economy to get the old doubloons rolling in again.
    When I departed my former workplace a number of pieces of paper with disputable comments about me fell off my desk into the top of the shredder, which switched itself on. It was a step in the journey to the newly invigorated Phlogiston,
    Good luck
    henrypm0 likes this.
  14. ridleyrumpus

    ridleyrumpus Star commenter

    If it has been longer than three months since you were last "wronged" it would be very difficult to bring any sort of case, after that amount of time you are (in general) deemed to have accepted the situation. (There are some exceptions when for instance there has been a pattern of behaviour over some time.)

    However you have resigned and I presume you have resigned in such a way you did not indicate it was constructive dismissal.

    If you wanted to take action you would need legal advice but personally I cannot see it flying.

    If that is the case it would do yourself far more good to have a BBQ.
  15. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    If it's a personal injury claim the OP has 3 years from the date of the injury in which to lodge a claim,
  16. peapicker

    peapicker Star commenter

    It's not though, is it.
  17. Bedlam3

    Bedlam3 Star commenter

    Without knowing more about the OPs mental health I don't know but it certainly sounds like she/ he has suffered a personal injury. The issue hs had a major impact on the OP.
  18. peapicker

    peapicker Star commenter

    No it doesn't. It doesn't come close to having the grounds to bring a PI claim.
  19. schoolsout4summer

    schoolsout4summer Star commenter

    Reading through threads like this one makes me feel sad. No job should make a person/s feel like this, for so long - certainly not a caring profession!
    sbkrobson likes this.
  20. SCAW12

    SCAW12 Occasional commenter

    Give it to someone else to look after for you. Someone who lives a long way away from you.

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