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(In)appropriate amount of contact from headteacher?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by frances73, Sep 4, 2011.

  1. My partner is a deputy head and is constantly being phoned and texted by his head during weekends, evenings and during the holidays about work-related issues. The head phoned him twice before 7am recently - and then sent him a text asking why he wasn't answering his phone - during the summer holidays no less!! I know he is a deputy head and SMT have to do a lot of preparation and planning together, but it is bordering on ridiculous. My partner is new to the school and the role, and obviously wants to make a good impression, but he is finding it difficult to switch off and relax due to being constantly bothered about non-urgent work issues.
    I am worried it will get worse this term, as they are expecting an Osted inspection this academic year. Does anyone know if there are guidelines from unions about appropriate amount of contact during personal time? And is it different for those in senior management?
    Any ideas or advice welcomed!
    Cheers.
     
  2. My partner is a deputy head and is constantly being phoned and texted by his head during weekends, evenings and during the holidays about work-related issues. The head phoned him twice before 7am recently - and then sent him a text asking why he wasn't answering his phone - during the summer holidays no less!! I know he is a deputy head and SMT have to do a lot of preparation and planning together, but it is bordering on ridiculous. My partner is new to the school and the role, and obviously wants to make a good impression, but he is finding it difficult to switch off and relax due to being constantly bothered about non-urgent work issues.
    I am worried it will get worse this term, as they are expecting an Osted inspection this academic year. Does anyone know if there are guidelines from unions about appropriate amount of contact during personal time? And is it different for those in senior management?
    Any ideas or advice welcomed!
    Cheers.
     
  3. You are probably better off circumventing the intrusions, rather than quoting some limit on out of hours contact time (though I don't think it exists) for the sake of the new job. Could you try asking the HT to email him rather than using the phone. Or just put the phone to voicemail during the unsociable hours. Or tell the HT you lost the phone, in the mean time get him to email, until you get a replacement, when you will let them know what the new number is.......... Needless to say you answer the emails if and when you want out of hours.
     
    spectra75 likes this.
  4. Your partner should do 2 things:
    1. Get a new mobile phone (SIM card) and don't tell the number to the head. Your partner cannot be required to have a mobile phone at all - unless it's a work phone paid by the school.
    2. Say you don't have internet at home. It is not part of a teaching contract - unless the school pays for it.
     
  5. Cervinia

    Cervinia Occasional commenter

    Your partner should do 2 things:
    1. Explain that they are finding it difficult to 'switch off' due to the work related text messages. Request that personal contact should be for emergencies only. Put this in writing.
    2. Make a record of all texts/emails/calls received, if they persist.

     
  6. Why ask us mere mortals? Suggest you raise this on the Headteacher's forum for some ideas. Generally speaking SLT don't have all that many restrictions that apply to us - eg no 1265 hours, no one-meeting-per-week. It seems excessive but it's down to partner to specify some boundaries. Work-life balance does apply to all employees!
     
  7. Play his game. Find out his favourite TV programme, when he is having a quiet evening in with his partner, when he is having an early night and phone him repeatedly at these times.

     
  8. And finally....... Ring him about 11.30 on a Saturday night when he is heading upstairs for a post Match of the Day shag. The long discussion of some pointless initiative will make him think twice about contacting you.
     

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