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Midday Assistants - am I right to feel aggrieved?

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by anon760, Feb 1, 2011.

  1. At our small primary school we have 3 regular midday assistants, two of whom started just over 12 months ago, just before I was appointed as HT (having previously been deputy). All middays were issued with a handbook, and received play-leader training, had an update on the assertive discipline policy, and were provided with stickers etc for positive rewards. We also have a reward system in the dining hall where the best behaved table is rewarded the following week by having linen tablecloth,after-dinner mints etc.

    I usually supervise in the dining hall at least 3 out of 5 days. Several days ago one of the ladies informed me about an incident involving a 5 year old boy who had been playing roughly on the yard and had hurt another child. She had sent him in to the teacher(who was on her lunch break, I was off-site that particular day), he had been spoken to, told he had lost his 'good to be green card' (and therefore 5 mins 'golden time') and sent back out. The midday took exception to the fact that he had been sent out again. What has upset me is that my chair of governors has been in to see me this afternoon as the midday has made a formal complaint about the incident. I am feeling really annoyed that she has gone over my head (that is how I see it) to the chair, I had already dealt with the incident, spoken to the teacher and child, and the parents of the child he had hurt, and we had made some changes as to how he should be dealt with during lunchtimes. Incidentally, it is rare that he misbehaves on the yard when teaching/ta's are on duty.

    Am I over-reacting? Has anyone else had similar situations or can offer advice? The chair did not mention the midday by name, but it was very obvious who he was referring to and he did not correct me when I discussed how I had dealt with the complaint the previous week.
  2. Ask your LA for a model grievance policy (usually HR) and take it through consultation then to GB. Most policies will have an informal stage in which staff will be expected to speak with the linemanager/headteacher about the issue and seek a resolution. Then, request that the CoG ensure that all stages are followed as any formal grievance procedures could be difficult if all stages of the process not complete. Any involvement by the CoG at this stage could prejudice a later panel and also rule him/her out as a panel member.
    Unions have guidance too: http://www.teachers.org.uk/files/Guidance-for-NUTReps-GrievanceProcedures_ESy_0.doc

  3. mychuck

    mychuck New commenter

    The midday supervisor has been 'heavy handed' in reporting it to the CoG and in return the CoG should have followed the proceedures carefully.
    I suggest you have a series of short meetings with you midday team about best practice and following proceedure.
    It seems to me that you did everything appropriately and that you need to nip this sort of thing in the bud.
  4. Thank you both for your advice. I spoke about the situation to the vice-chair of governors. I have spoken to the midday team and advised them on protocol and procedures. The lady who had reported the incident owned up and said she felt I had not handled the original incident to her satisfaction because I had not reported back to her what I had done about it! To make matters worse, she has posted a comment on facebook portraying the school in a negative light. Am now going to look at disciplinary policy. Just feeling very fed up today, its been an extremely long week! (this is just one of a number of other incidents). Thank you again for your advice.
  5. anon2799

    anon2799 New commenter

    The facebook thing is definitely a disciplinary issue. Check your Internet use policy.
    Even if you haven't got an up to date one which includes facebook use ( yet) she's breached confidentiality and brought the school into disrepute.
    she sounds like a proper pain. Some training for all mid days on confidentiality, procedures, behaviour management, safeguarding etc , would be a useful way to tackle this.

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