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In a right pickle with new job

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by NowaMrs, Mar 15, 2012.

  1. Hello
    Long story short, am starting new job after Easter and have already resigned current post. Have now discovered new job have given me a timetable with a language on it that I can't teach and have no qualification in. I was always honest about this in my application and interview. School told me at interview that for the right candidate they'd buy in a separate teacher to teach the language that I couldn't. Well that hasn't happened. This isn't fair surely? Isn't this them going back on their word? I was always honest and upfront about this and they hired me knowing this. What can I do? I have obviously verbally accepted the offer at the interview stage but I am really unhappy about this. This was NOT in the advert or interview that I would have to teach this language, they repeated several times that they'd sort it. Clearly their word means nothing.
    What am I within my rights to do? They say they're trying to sort out a teacher to teach this subject but where do I stand on if this arrangement falls through, is it back to being my responsibility again?
    I am not the sort of person to go breach contract or anything but I'm feeling very nervous and unhappy about starting this job when I should be excited.... :(
    Please help


  2. chocolateworshipper

    chocolateworshipper Occasional commenter

    I would check whether it is possible to stay in current job (may be possible if they haven't offered it to anyone else yet) - and forget the new job. Who wants to work for a school like that?! Don't worry about a verbal acceptance if you haven't put anything in writing (I hope noone is going to tell me that isn't correct!)
  3. Current job have hired long-term supply already :( plus the humiliating come down of asking for my job back, just couldnt do it :(
    am gutted, I have a real nervy feeling about this new school now, like if they can do this, what else would they do? :(
    cannot face being unemployed, dunno what i would do?

  4. haven't signed a contract yet, just the "new starter form" can they hold me to this!?
  5. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    Regardless of the paper copy, you have 'signed' a contract by verbally accepting the job - While they can't shackle you to the post, they *could* pursue breach of contract and the cost of re advertising the post if they chose to - In addition there is your reputation locally to consider. I would contact the school, perhaps even arrange to visit and meet with the head and discuss the issue face to face and outline your upset and feelings.
  6. Yes I understand. I am not someone who has ever breached contract. I wouldn't want to however I feel they've breached it in a way with me, promising something then not delivering. I could hold them to account for this surely? I have a draft e-mail written to the Head, am going to sleep on it tonight then e-mail in the morning.
    The HOD is still trying to sort out the additional teacher but as I said, this all sounds very "shifty" and I'm scared they'll back out of their end of the bargain and just lump me with this class. If supplying this additional teacher would be such a problem I really wish they'd just not offered me the job..... [​IMG]
  7. paulie86

    paulie86 New commenter

    Not got any advice, just symmpathy. I am in a similar situation, but would only be a small amount with a Yr 6 class. I am moving from middle to primary in September (through closure, not choice) and am expected to teach Year 6 French. I didn't even study this language at school myself!
    Sorry to jump on your thread.
  8. tafkam

    tafkam Occasional commenter

    Have you asked the new school if it's just a mistake?
  9. DM

    DM New commenter

    Seriously? Assuming this isn't A Level teaching, can't you just learn the other language over the summer holidays?
    Edit: Didn't see the starting at Easter bit - I can see that would cause a problem.
  10. catmother

    catmother Star commenter

    I would not!
  11. modgepodge

    modgepodge Established commenter

    You'll be fine. I taught a French lesson to year 5 on less than 24 hours notice when I s on supply, and like u I didn't speak a word. This situation is incredibly common in primary schools as very few teachers speak a language, especially if the language isn't French which is what most ppl speak, if anything. You'll only have to teach 1 lesson a week (assuming ur a y6 class teacher). OPs situation on the other hand sounds like a nigh,are, they ,ay well be expected to teach up to GCSE and for a number of lessons per week. I wouldn't pull out of the contract if I were the op -this is the schools issue. If they want a mon specialist teaching rubbish lessons that's their problem.
  12. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    I think you need to put your concerns in writing, and ask for a meeting to discuss possible solutions. You need something on record so that they can't blame you if the group make poor progress.
    It's presumably difficult to sort out the problem mid-year, but maybe if everyone puts their heads together, a solution can be found, even if there's no easy class swap to be found on the timetable. One school with a shortage of maths teachers created larger groups with two teachers: maybe if there's another group at the same time, there would be some way of working in tandem so that the other teacher can take the lead, with you perhaps working with the students on written aspects while they do the oral work? Or maybe there's a native speaker TA who could work with you. If by any chance they're year 9s who don't intend to continue the language, a radical solution would be to drop language A and do a crash course in language B for the term. If the school has ITTs, they may be able to reduce the problem by placing an ITT with the group.
    If you do end up teaching this language, put in a request for some fairly immediate training: linguists can probably advise on what's most useful.
  13. lucyrose50

    lucyrose50 Occasional commenter

    In order to become competent at the language I teach, I did GCSE, A level, a 4 year degree and spent 2 years in a country where it's spoken. Are you seriously suggesting that spending the summer holidays learning a new language would be adequate for teaching it to GCSE level??
    With regard to the comments about teaching primary language without speaking a word of the language yourself, this must be why I spend a substantial amount of Y7 undoing the damage done by pupils being taught wildly incorrect pronunciation and inaccurate vocabularyat primary school. I really feel for primary teachers who are forced to teach a language they don't know, I know it's a difficult situation and they do their best under the circumstances, but it's surely not something to be recommended as a good thing.
  14. internationalschools

    internationalschools New commenter

    Yes, you would be in breach of a verbal contract if you didn't start at the new school...but they are in breach of a verbal contract if they told you you didn't have to teach the language! I don't see any way that they can pursue you for breach of contract because they broke it first. There's no way I'd teach a subject I didn't feel competent to teach - if you can't do it, you may end up ruining your career by being dragged through competency procedures. I would run a mile from this dodgy school!
  15. GloriaSunshine

    GloriaSunshine New commenter

    I wouldn't worry about the coming term. Your HoD can sort revision lessons for GCSE and A' Level classes. If you have y12 coming back for half a term, there should be room for timetable changes to get them covered by a specialist. Same for y10. Once y11 and y13 are gone, it should be easy to swap. KS3 lessons will be disrupted by summer term activities and they may just have to work out of text books a lot of the time. Again, once exam classes go, you might be able to swap these lessons. More of a concern is next year. However, it could be that the school really cannot recruit someone for a few lessons just for a term. Depending on how your school does it, there should be some preliminary plans for staffing and timetabling made for September although final timetables won't be in place for a while, so I would focus on ensuring an acceptable timetable for September.

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