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Incompetent colleague

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by frannysing, Mar 25, 2012.

  1. Hi all, before I begin I'll just state that I am not exactly looking for answers here to this post, just feel like getting this off my chest in the company of some fellow teachers.

    I work in a small school, independent SEN/EBD school and we have - including our Head Teacher - only 7 teaching staff. We all teach 2/3 subjects at GCSE, Entry Level and where appropriate some Unit Awards. Having only 7 teaching staff means that we need to rely on each other and we need to be sure that each member of staff is really pulling their own weight. In a small group there really is nowhere to hide incompetency.
    We recently had an ofsted inspection which went really well. We found out about it 3 days prior to their visit (with a weekend in between), so we had a decent amount of time to prepare - although anyone who has been through an inspection before will know that 3 days could be 3 weeks or could be 3 months when it comes to ofsted as there is always something you haven't quite done or think you could have prepared for better. Anyway, for the 3 days we had to prepare, the majority of my colleagues stayed late (12 o'clock each night) and we all worked over the weekend too. All of us except one member. This member of staff is a full time teacher of one subject and is also responsible for organizing and partly arranging the schemes of work for two others (although he does not teach these subjects). As we were going through all of our paperwork, the Head Teacher discovered that he had not completed massive parts of his paperwork; including lesson plans, schemes of work nor had he bothered to compile anassessment file or carry out any assessment on the pupils. It was quite shocking. What was also discovered was that in year before he had been responsible for teaching a subject to the Year 11s, that he had not bothered to teach at all. What resulted was myself and another colleague scrambling his paperwork together at the last minute, otherwise we may have failed our inspection. We have now realized just how much of this lazy man's slack we have been picking up for the last two years. We have spoken to our Head but so far there has been no action taken.

    This is obviously a case of gross misconduct, isn't it. However, this member of staff is due to drop his working hours after the summer due to family commitments and we are now all worried that an already disengaged member of staff will become even more disengaged and again we will all be put under pressure to pick up the slack of a member of staff who is incapable of doing his job correctly.

    I love my job and I become extremely frustrated with someone who, IMHO, should step aside and let someone who wants to do the job and is capable step in.
  2. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    You really think he should have stayed in school until 12 o'clock each night? Why on earth was it necessary for you to be staying that late?
    I would question why this has only been noticed now?
    Again, why is this only noticed now?
    Youhave done as much as you can.
    Not enough information to say for certain.

  3. No, I don't think he should have stayed until 12 o'clock each night - I didn't suggest that - but I do think he should have stayed to complete his OWN work. If that had taken him to 12 o'clock at night that would have been up to him.
    Other members of staff stayed until 12 o'clock because we wanted things to go really well and thanks to our efforts they did.

    Why has this not been noted before? I have asked my Head Teacher the very same question. We are not responsible for monitoring what a colleague does in their class time, what they teach or how they teach; that is the Head's job.

    Yes we have spoken to our Head about it, several times since the inspection. Yes we have done what we can. I did state that I was not looking for answers.
  4. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    There was a strong implication that you disapproved of him not staying as late as you.
    So, equally, you are not in a position to say that this is clearly gross misconduct.
    I did not pretend to give answers. Just some observations...

  5. Crowbob, there was no strong indication that I did not approve of him staying as late as me - there was a direct statement that I believed he should have stayed late, to whatever time he felt necessary to do his OWN work. I'm not sure how I can make that clearer.

    I work with a man that is highly incompetent - not simply by my observations but by the majority of my other colleagues - I have worked alongside him for over 2 years so I'd say that I'm in an excellent position to comment on his recent actions.

    You replies seem to be rather oppositional, so I'm not entirely sure why you are bothering to reply at all. Unless it is the lawyer (or law lecturer) in you coming out and you feel like issuing an interrogation. I'm not on the stand, Crowbob, just venting to other teachers about my situation.

    Anyway, I'm off to enjoy what's left of this gloriously sunny afternoon. Hope you do the same.
  6. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    I thought some more about my response and wanted to apologise as I think I came over a little too strongly. I can see why you might think/feel that this colleague's actions are having a negative impact, particularly under inspection stress.
  7. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    Oh, crossed posts. I wish you a happy afternoon as well.
  8. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    In most schools there is at least one colleague who does not pull their weight as much as others would like. Sometimes HTs do something about it and sometimes they don't.
  9. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    It sounds like your head teacher isn't doing a very good job of monitoring staff.
  10. ilovesooty

    ilovesooty Star commenter

    I agree. And a genuine "no notice" inspection would put paid to silliness such as staff working till midnight or over a weekend to "prepare" for it.
  11. Indeed.
  12. Thank you Crowbob, your apology is most welcome. I did have a lovely afternoon, as you did I hope.

  13. Good luck ladies (or gentlemen) for your next inspection. I'm not sure if either of you have had an ofsted visit since new regulations were introduced but I can say genuinely from my most recent experience of inspection (2 and a half weeks ago) that you will be thankful for any prior notice given and I don't wish a 'no notice' inspection on either of you.
    On the same note, I don't view working weekends as silly but then again I enjoy what I do, so I'm lucky.

    No Torey, my head teacher had not been doing a good enough job of monitoring the staff but I am happy to say that changes have been taking place in the past week or so since my other colleagues and I spoke to her about the situation.
  14. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    I seriously hope that you don't work until midnight on a regular basis. I enjoy what I do, but I actually want a life as well.
    I also hope you didn't all say something to her. It was the responsibility of your head or her line manager.
    I don't agree with the way OFSTED work, but I think no notice inspections stop this sort of 'cover up' and people should be doing their job properly all of the time.
  15. Crowbob

    Crowbob Senior commenter

    The shirking colleague was a "him", so I assume the "her" that franny refers to is the Head.
  16. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    I missed that. Thankfully I no longer work in a place where colleagues treat each other like that.
  17. I don't agree with the way OFSTED work, but I think no notice inspections stop this sort of 'cover up' and people should be doing their job properly all of the time. - Torey

    What cover up Torey?

    I seriously hope that you don't work until midnight on a regular basis. I enjoy what I do, but I actually want a life as well. - Torey.
    No, silly, of course I don't work until midnight on a regular basis. I posted that information on here because it was such an exceptional situation and (as I stated at the opening on my original post) I was peeved and looking to rant about it.

    I also hope you didn't all say something to her. It was the responsibility of your head or her line manager. - Torey
    Yes, Crowbob is correct, the 'her' in that sentence is my Head Teacher and thankfully, as I wrote previously, she is, as is her job, dealing with the problematic colleague. I think you got your wires crossed Torey.
  18. Torey - I work in a small SEN/EBD school with only 7 teaching staff so as you can imagine having excellent working relationships is one of the keys to our success. We couldn't survive if we treated each other like 'that', so we don't. This is an unusual and unfortunate situation (again the reason I posted on here) but thankfully it is now being dealt with through the correct channels. I await harmony at work again, soon.
    Thanks for your posts.
  19. Torey

    Torey Occasional commenter

    If OFSTED were unaware that your head and colleague are incompetent then it was covered up. Your head is incompetent for not knowing what his staff is up to. More so if there are only 7 of you. I understand it this is a rant but I don't like some of the attitudes you've expressed which is why I'm glad I work where I do. I hope things improve for you.
  20. ilovesooty

    ilovesooty Star commenter

    Exactly - and the HT had time to cover it up with the help of staff. Hence part of the reason for my comment about "no notice" inspections.

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