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My baby died and now I think Ill be sacked help!

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by dancin, Dec 1, 2015.

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  1. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    In brief....

    • I am a SEN teacher teaching a different age group to what I'm used to and have new staff
    • 2 weeks in 2 of my TAs made allegation of me using unreasonable force on a pupil (its exaggerated grossly I moved a child by the arm to keep them safe from others)
    • I was pregnant at the time (around 12 weeks)
    • No support offered despite pregnancy just an occupational health referral that came little too late
    • I had to carry on working with TAs and was not able to discuss it, meaning relationships were strained and I didn't know who I could trust
    • I lost my baby after the 'safe period' and I am still off work grieving
    • Have decided to have my union rep represent me at the disciplinary. Now I've read the documentation it is awful reading and such a personal attack. Lots of negative comments about me and both TAs swear I used excessive force which is absolute rubbish. I don't have any staff who remember seeing the incident but as it happened outside the classroom there were plenty of staff around so I have several staff to vouch that they didn't see anything untoward and to give character statements to counteract the negative comment being made
    • Worst case scenario I lose my job, best-nothing.
    • I've just lost my baby can I really be sacked too?
  2. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    OMG, my heart immediately goes out to you...what a horrible personal situation. First of all, I am so sorry for the loss of your baby (I had a miscarriage as well, although a week or two earlier) and emotionally, it was devastating. I see from your post that you are off work at the moment - why is your school bothering you?

    Secondly, I guess I am unsure about the chronology here - Did the incident(s) happen when you were pregnant? In the midst of the mc? What couldn't you mention to the TAs? The pregnancy or the mc? When I had my first miscarriage, others around me (in a FE college, though) were fully aware of it and were very sympathetic, e.g when I teared up, I could 'excuse myself' to find a book or two. Where you told not to mention it? Who told you? SLT/SMT? If so, how cruel to you.

    Finally, and please ask for theo or glsghost for the correct legal advice, but if you are off work, then they cannot start disciplinary procedures against you (please correct me, if I am wrong, much more experienced ones!).

    Biggest hugs and I am so sorry for your loss. Been there, survived it and hated it. Biggest virtual hugs.
    dancin likes this.
  3. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    Hi Sabrinakat

    Yes I was 10 weeks pregnant when new term started in Sept
    Incident occured 2 weeks later (so my TAs hardly knew me! I suspect they didn't like my approach as its quite strict)
    I wasn't allowed to know which TA had made the allegation or talk about it to them or anyone else meaning I had no support & it made things very hard day to day!

    It was a late miscarriage (practically stillbirth as I gave birth) that happened several weeks ago and haven't been to work since. The investigation began before the missed miscarriage and my time off.

    I stupidly wanted investigation over with before xmas so agreed for it to happen in my absence.

    Does anyone think the worst will happen or they will see there no real evidence just 2 bitter TAs accounts and just give me a warning?

    To top it off in my anger I contacted staff I thought I could trust to vent and its backfired and Ill probably be in trouble now for talking about it!
  4. Incommunicado

    Incommunicado Established commenter

    I just despair of the situations we find ourselves in these days!!!!

    I could NEVER encourage anyone now to go into teaching.
    syedsgirl and Kiko2 like this.
  5. drek

    drek Star commenter

    i'm so sorry for your loss.
    Re: incident. Can your union not help you respond to the false accusation in writing?
    Your school must have a policy with regard to how to handle children who are a danger to themselves and others. If they don't they should do!
    State your case and your list of witnesses.
    Ask for the TAs to be replaced during what you believe are unfair allegations, adding the truth, that on fop of grieving having to work alongside your false accusers is causing accute stress.
    Ask the school for training on handling violent students, again in writing. Make sure you refer to school policies when you do.
    And yes the school have the entire line of staff whise pay they control to call as witnesses of your character,
    Fight for your self esteem and reputation. The TAs mught be doing what they belive is right. They might be having their own agenda. Dont waste time and energy worrying about their motives. The 'school' is now investigating, you need help to formulate a formal response.
    But first let your mind and body heal from the personal trauma.
    Hope you feel better soon.
  6. youmakemesmile

    youmakemesmile New commenter

    I am so so sorry for the loss of your baby. You are so strong to even have the clarity of mind to be able to reach out for help and post as well as you do after suffering something like this.

    May light dawn in this dark situation
    dancin likes this.
  7. Morninglover

    Morninglover Star commenter

    I think you need to ask whether you actually want this job, given all that has happened to you...
  8. lanokia

    lanokia Star commenter

    I just wanted to say I am very sorry to read of your loss.

    Your own health and mental well-being are of paramount importance. Those must come first.

    Hope you recover in time.
    dancin likes this.
  9. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    I see union today and have written it all down referring to DFE reasonable force policy but thanks will go over there's again too. I almost feel I don't care..nothing is as bad as losing my baby but I'm the kind of person who has never even had a speeding ticket before. I am always careful and so shocked it could come to this. I think even if outcome is positive I need to leave teaching. The stress is insane. Wish me luck. I shall keep you informed
  10. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    I hope your union prove supportive in helping you through the disciplinary process here… and of course that you can keep yourself together while you are still healing.

    I'm so sorry you lost your pregnancy…
    In cases of still birth or late stage miscarriage at 25 weeks plus you are entitled to the full maternity benefits that you would be eligible to. I'm not sure whether your dates work out for this if you were ten weeks in September and miscarried several weeks ago? If you are eligible it might give you some formal time to recover… please don't underestimate the influence of hormonal distress on your ability to think rationally and cope with other matters.
  11. InkyP

    InkyP Star commenter

    No advice but my heart goes out to you. I can only echo what youmakemesmile said.
    dancin likes this.
  12. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    No I was 20 week's. I was just days away from writing my mat leave letter.
    Thanks for the love x
  13. HelenREMfan

    HelenREMfan Star commenter

    I echo what others have said about taking the time off that you need. I am sure your GP will be sympathetic and hopefully would put on any medical note pregnancy/birth related reasons. for as long as you need, which could be some time! I too suffered an earlier miscarriage than you under some distressing circumstances and I didn't see it coming as I had had no problems having my first child. I planted the azalea which some kind person gave me into my cottage front garden and would always associate it with my baby when I looked out of the window and I did find that a comfort.

    As Senco are you in charge of allocating TAs for class support or for their role in the school? If so I would be tempted to delegate these 2 to other classes. I am sure you have a sound and thorough defence against these allegations as you are acquainted with the restraint procedures etc. Did the child in question make an allegation or is this just based on what the TA thought? I do understand your dismay that someone has betrayed your confidences when discussing the incident - what a horrid thing to do; now be more careful as to who you trust. You said you elected to have an investigation whilst you were off school with the pregnancy - am sorry if I missed this but what was the outcome or has it been deferred until your return?

    I do hope this can all be settled with satisfactorily and quickly. Allow yourself the very necessary grieving time and try to pay no heed to school and the **** we increasingly have to put up with in the workplace. Take care.....
  14. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    I'm not a Senco.
    No the child made no contest but they are SEN.
    I am praying the evidence and character references I have are enough to make the case seem flimsy and not strong enough for a dismissal. It is after all a gross exaggeration and misunderstanding. Then I can hold my head high and quit and never return. I have been off 4 weeks now grieving. The hearing is next week.
  15. HelenREMfan

    HelenREMfan Star commenter

    Sorry I misunderstood re Senco - in that case I presume you have no say in choice of TAs in the classroom with you. Surely it should be noted that the child doesn't feel anything of any "incident? I hope all goes as it should at this meeting.
    I sincerely hope the union rep (hopefully not the school rep but someone much higher up the Union food chain?) attacks the personal attacks. Should all be dealt with to your satisfaction and you are suitably recovered from your loss would you really wish to leave this school? Were things before all this started heading in a good direction or did you really not like the place? If, when you feel better, things apart from the 2 TAs weren't bad, perhaps you would wish to re evaluate your wish to quit. If however the stress and unpleasantness etc you feel contributed to your medical situation I would have the Union rep primed re that and negotiate for you. It would be a great shame to leave a job you were good at because of 2, who can only be described as less than professional TAs!
  16. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    Thanks for the kind words. I loved it there and am gutted they have ruined it for me. I suppose I should see what happens but I do anticipate leaving the profession...no where is safe anymore! I want a life again
  17. HelenREMfan

    HelenREMfan Star commenter

    Well I would just say..... bide a while and see what happens. It would be a great shame if you allowed 2 TAs to spoil what you thought was a nice job. When you are feeling better about things your job might be a bit of solace to you till your next stage. I would advise wait and see..... I hope all turns out well for you.
  18. dancin

    dancin New commenter

    So union rep thinks worse case scenario a final written warning but hopefully a written warning. He's been really good. Fingers crossed for next week!
    JRiley1 likes this.
  19. snowyhead

    snowyhead Lead commenter

    I doubt you would be eligible for any protection that being pregnant might afford you, but others more familiar with maternity rights will be able to shed light on this. Did SLT know that you were pregnant when the incident occured, bearing in mind you are working in an environment where physical aggression is probably a more frequent occurrence?
  20. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Star commenter

    @dancing: I am so sorry to hear about your baby. I can't begin to imagine how you might be feeling. In the bullying climate of many schools these days, an SMT would see you as 'fair game' due to your emotional vulnerability. Best time to go in for the knock-out punch is when you are down.
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