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Is it too easy to be 'off sick' in teaching?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by deleted358, Mar 5, 2009.

  1. lilachardy

    lilachardy Star commenter

    I read Neli's "you" as a plural you, not you specifically Becky ...
  2. I really don't like this type of thread. it comes up every couple of months and I find it depressing.
    We are all grown ups at work and if my colleagues feel that they need to take time off, then they need to take time of. End of.
    If you are getting resentful because you are doing too much cover, that is not their fault - that is the fault of your management and you are foolish to do the cover. As well as this having an impact on you, there could be a supply teacher getting some work. Go see your cover manager and tell him/her that you are not doing it.
    Anyway, when it comes to being equitable, schools are often the last place where this is practiced. Think of the people who have loads of 6th form (can't see the attraction myself) and the "good" classes.Then think of the poor bug.gers who seem to have all the worst sets. I know one bloke, who is normally really spry and perky, who has been given loads of really poorly behaved sets this year. He has not complained, but I know he is finding it bloody hard work and a bit demoralising. He has been quite unwell and under the weather this year. He hasn't taken time off, but has struggled in (I think he's mad). I genuinely believe that his onerous workload has not helped his health and well being this year.
    To be fair, the kids are always really sweet when you say you are unwell and they are often much more caring than colleagues! They often know when you are feeling upset, which I find quite sweet and even the naughty ones will behave nicely when they think you are unhappy.
  3. fringe

    fringe New commenter

    3 things:
    1) it is the same in all very <u>stressful</u> public sector jobs (police, hospital), esp. secondary teaching, it can be horrifically stressful
    2) by and large, teachers do not abuse the system, far from it. Comparing teaching with any other occupation in the private sector is neither here nor there. It is just simply impossible. Compare like for like in terms of levels of stress (police work springs to mind, can be horrendously stressful in a full-on in-your-face way. You can really only compare your run of the mill teacher who works in a run of the mill comp teaching a wide range of classes with another run of the mill, etc. you get the picture, otherwise any other comparison is pointless
    3) your colleagues were not seen by OH because most HTs know that waiting lists are so long that there is not much point referring pple
  4. Several times I have agreed with this statement. I would not begrudge anyone time off if needed. Never has this been my argument.

    I asked whether it was fair in terms of thinking about the staff that had to cover for you. Again, I did not personalise it or say it was unfair.
    Can people not ask a question without it turning into a personal debate? I cited a personal example to show why I was asking the question. I do believe, and more from reading this forum, that people do take time off much more quickly than in other professions as a result of the system allowing you to do so.
    I find it astonishing that people on here can say all they like 'don't go in, you're unfit to work' yet when I say that I am dubious about some peoples time off I get a 'you are not a medical expert'!!

  5. neli

    neli Occasional commenter

    Ever heard phrases like ;
    'I don' want to be funny but...'
    'I don't mean to be a *** but...'
    'You know I would never think this but...'
    Sorry, dig, dig, dig!
    You have no idea what other peoples personal circumstances might be and perhaps you should simply try to be supportive rather than sniping behind backs, gossiping.
    Sorry to be snappy but I am very sensitive about this at the moment.

  6. I think it depends on the school. My last school we had a couple of people as you describe who NEVER did a full week for a variety of reasons. Even the kids commented on it. my old school were particularly slack at managing the situation - if it had been in other fields of employment they would have been out far sooner! My new school I feel has it right- they are supportive for genuine reasons but no-one appears to take the mick.....
  7. I've really enjoyed this thread- it's an interesting debate!
    I saw Beckylou as being jogged into thinking about a situation in response to the two teachers having time off work, rather than wanting to talk specifically about their situation (which of course none of us, including Beckylou really know all the ins and outs of!) But of course I respect the right of other posters to differ!

    I'd like to think that as a 'caring' profession, whose role is to support people to achieve their potential, despite difficulties, that we would have sympathy for people who are ill or need some time off. I've certainly never either felt under pressure myself not to take time off, or thought of any colleagues as taking advantage of the system, but maybe I'm lucky...


  8. If you are flippin' well going to say something, then bloody well say it and don't do this mealy mouthed "Although i am asking if it is fair, that doesn't mean i don't think it's not fair" stuff.
    You are displeased that you are having to cover for colleagues and casting doubts upon the reasons. Just stop doing anything above your cover quota. Say "no", "No" ,<u>"NO!!!!"</u>
    When you stop doing the cover, you will be pleasantly surpised at how little their absences bother you.
  9. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Frankly I'm appalled at the number of times that I see posters advising others to take time off work but since the poster who has posted the thread is getting tea and sympathy and advised to stay off you'd get your throat ripped out for suggesting otherwise.

    I still think you're wrong to suppose you know in what circumstances your colleagues appear to be taking time off regularly and that you'd be better off not commenting.
    That the school is incapable of managing absence cover is not the fault of the absent colleague - whether that colleague is you or someone else. As you rightly acknowledged this culture means that the same kind of gossip goes on when you're off as you contribute to when they're off (all 'you' in general).


  10. Because I wasn't perhaps being genuine in saying that??? I know people who are off sick on here and I genuinely feel sorry for what they are going through.
    I also did not want a debate about mental health which is why I said that.
    I'll need to remember that is what asking for an opinion is called!!!

  11. It doesn't bother me.... it was a bloody debate!!! I cited an example!!!
    I don't do too much cover, well i did this week but that was because of snow!!
  12. neli

    neli Occasional commenter

    I was refering to your knowing confidential details about occ. health appointments at your school and the way this came about rather than anything you have said on this thread.

  13. It's not just that. In my old job it was someone in my dept who was always off (and I mean always and I can't go into details here but it was over two years and not just for one thing it was many) and I didn't do their cover. But I had awful behaviour going on in the classroom next to me and had to help manage this with supply teachers...was let down continuously on rehearsals and other extra curricular activities they were 'planning' but I ended up taking..we missed out on important info from SMT as our head of faculty was never there etc etc. It can make things very very difficult. Im not saying sometimes its not justified- I myself have had issues with stress and depression - but I think in some cases people get away with it and it just makes it worse for the rest of us.
  14. It was neither gossip nor sniping. It was in fact OccH letting slip this info during MY OccH app. That info has never passed my lips until this thread.
  15. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    If that's a fact I'd have damned well reported OH - how dare they? I expect any appointment I have with OH to be private and confidential and not up for them to gossip about to someone else.
    However, in saying that, is there more than one doctor/phsyio/counsellor at the OH practice? There are in mine.
    The fact remains that you don't KNOW what the circumstances surrounding your colleagues absences are.
  16. neli

    neli Occasional commenter

    You only ever mentioned it on the world wide web!
    Sorry I apologise[​IMG]

  17. WHy is a burden on you? It is the problem of your management, you should be guilt tripping them, not the people off sick.
    I don't feel guilty when off sick. I learnt long ago that school survives just fine without me, and I am better off getting better and staying off shorter periods of time.

  18. We have a visiting OH as school is not near anywhere with a OH clinic. It then takes place in a local yokel surgery with not very tactful reception staff.
    Ha ha Neli, I get your point about the WWW!!
  19. lilachardy

    lilachardy Star commenter

    OH is bloody miles from my school - but given that people travel 60 miles or more to work, they'd have a job to situate themselves somewhere convenient for everyone.

  20. Dianaprince, please read where I have said several times throughout the thread that I was wanting a discussion and I cited a personal example to kick start it as well as my posts saying it doesn't bother me and that it hasn't made an impact on my cover directly!!
    Why should that be guilt tripping the sick?
    I was off for 7 weeks, my goodness, i am not adverse to staying off when needed!!!

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