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Invite to a meeting

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Sharmistra, Feb 8, 2019.

  1. Sharmistra

    Sharmistra New commenter

    I have been off work ill for some months and today received a letter "inviting" me to a meeting to investigate some parental complaints, which could lead to a hearing.

    I have been informed that I cannot bring representation and there is no mention of what policy this is being processed under.

    It all seems very strange.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  2. blazer

    blazer Star commenter

    Check with your union. Ask whoever has called the meeting for clarification use email. Bcc to your home e-mail. Likewise any replies.
     
    bevdex, XTrapnel, pepper5 and 5 others like this.
  3. bajan

    bajan Occasional commenter

    As blazer said, contact your union. Is the complaint against you?
     
    grumpydogwoman and agathamorse like this.
  4. Wilmthrop

    Wilmthrop New commenter

    I would personally want a trusted colleague/union rep at the meeting with me. You can be sure that the SLT will afford themselves this much.
     
  5. meggyd

    meggyd Senior commenter

    A parental complaint after a substantial absence? Very strange. Unless they are complaining about the absence in which case the school should be able to deal with it without you. Union.
     
  6. newposter

    newposter Occasional commenter

    Interesting that so many of these things are sent out on a Friday. Stewing time, we call it, in my school.
     
    XTrapnel, Mrsmumbles, Curae and 4 others like this.
  7. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Are you ill? Still ill? Yes? Too ill to go to work?

    So how can you attend a meeting then?
     
    bevdex, knitone, XTrapnel and 9 others like this.
  8. Sharmistra

    Sharmistra New commenter

    Good point
     
    XTrapnel and agathamorse like this.
  9. Sharmistra

    Sharmistra New commenter

    There were some non safeguarding complaint before the illness
     
  10. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    It's an invitation you are unable to accept. What with you being ILL!
     
  11. Teslasmate

    Teslasmate Occasional commenter

    Absolutely not. You can't be dragged in to face whatever dross they've dreamed up. Tell them no, remind them you are signed off. Then talk to the union. If the complaints are non safeguarding, they can wait.
     
  12. meggyd

    meggyd Senior commenter

     
  13. Marshall

    Marshall Lead commenter

    OMG - where is the whole education system going?

    Look at the schools complaint policy / staff policies and ask for further details.
     
    XTrapnel, agathamorse and pepper5 like this.
  14. afterdark

    afterdark Occasional commenter

  15. thekillers1

    thekillers1 Lead commenter

    This stinks. Extend your sick leave and decline the invitation.
     
    lardylegs and pepper5 like this.
  16. Sharmistra

    Sharmistra New commenter

    My fit note already covers the period I am, as stated "required", to attend the meeting.
     
    agathamorse, thekillers1 and pepper5 like this.
  17. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Given you are not entitled to representation, this is likely to be an investigative meeting where the head is trying to find out your side of things before deciding whether to take disciplinary action or not. Not attending means you don't get to give your side of the story regarding these complaints, which could be to your detriment. You could ask if you can send written submissions instead of attending, which your school may accept. (Ask your union for help in writing both the request and any submissions.)

    Not being well enough to work, does not necessarily mean you are not well enough to attend a meeting. What has OH said?

    If you don't attend, the school can proceed to a disciplinary hearing in your absence. Most are unwilling to do so without very good cause, but it is a possibility. You need to work with your union and ensure you give yourself the very best possibility of a positive outcome.

    This HR site generally gives fairly accurate advice, so I've looked for what seems to be your problem. If it isn't quite that, then have a look about the site and see what's more suited.
     
  18. baitranger

    baitranger Occasional commenter

    You could ask in a letter or an email whether the complaints they wish to question you about are the same complaints as those made before you were ill. If they are the same, offer to answer any questions regarding them in writing. You are off sick and in no condition to attend a meeting at present.Say you want to cooperate fully with any investigation and that answering questions in writing is the most you can do at present, given your illness.

    You could also enquire about why it has taken so long for your employer to investigate the complaints. If the complaints were regarded as important, they should have been investigated with reasonable speed. There must be a relevant policy on your school's intranet or perhaps in the library about time limits for investigating complaints. Why have they waited for several months before asking you about the complaints? Did you answer any questions about the complaints before you were off sick?

    Check all of the above with your union or if you aren't a member, get legal advice, perhaps over the phone.I would definitely ask them which school policy is relevant to their investigation. I think any meeting you go to is likely to be a fishing expedition designed to collect evidence to be used against you. You are off sick long term and they might want to get rid of you so proceed with great care and only after taking legal advice.
     
  19. Sharmistra

    Sharmistra New commenter

    DM'd you. Or would do if I could.

    I have not had an OH examination yet.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  20. Sharmistra

    Sharmistra New commenter

    How can an employer investigate the complaints without my input esp when the complaints are from a third party?
     

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