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Nightmare experience yesterday!!

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by Elainewhybro, Sep 23, 2015.

  1. Elainewhybro

    Elainewhybro New commenter

    I've just returned to teaching after 12 year break bringing up kids (have done lots of voluntary stuff in schools though to keep my hand in) and did 2nd day of supply yesterday at same school. The school is very tough but I enjoyed it and was pleased I didn't lose too much control in the classes I taught! There is a girl in one class Yr 3/4 - she is a real drama queen and cries at the drop of a hat, always accusing other kids of things (her teacher said the same). I had a shock yesterday when after lunch the deputy head questioned me about an incident involving this girl-I was clueless at first then realised she was talking about something that happened with the computer when she did something I hadn't wanted her to so I took the mouse off her and she stormed off crying. Unbeknown to me she later accused me of grabbing her to the deputy head! I was petrified at where this was going to lead but thankfully the girl eventually came to me with the deputy crying and apologising saying I hadn't grabbed her at all. It's left me feeling really fed-up and I keep imagining what would have happened if she hadn't owned up! Anyone else had a similar experience?
  2. jomaimai

    jomaimai Established commenter

    Nope, but I have seen a supply being dismissed at 10:00am because the most cheeky child had made up a story.

    It ended up with the supply not working for a month and a recommendation of expending £150 in a child protection course.

    The supply was clear but absolutely p... off.

    I found out because I exchanged phone numbers with the teacher. I never heard a thing, about the incident, in the school.
  3. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Hi Elaine

    I am sorry to hear of your experience, but thank you very much for posting; I hope all supply teachers read your post. If you are not in a union, please join one as soon as possible. Untrue accusations against teachers in schools are more common than we may think and it can happen to anyone at anytime - permanent or supply teachers can be affected. I can understand why you are fed up and, as you say, it could have been bad if the girl had not owned up.

    I have been working as a supply teacher in secondary schools for six years, and something like this happened to me once. I was at a school I had gone to many, many times and a student accused me of hitting them. The student was throwing a tennis ball through the air and I reached up to catch it and the student was behind me. I did not touch the student, but he said I did. The student was well known to the school to be a trouble maker, but I was in a very good position as I had another adult in the room who was very experienced and well known to the school and saw what happened. I immediately went to the cover manager and told them what happened and they spoke to the student, but it still left me very very shaken and I hate to admit I was not in a union. That very night I joined a union.

    Rule number 1 for supply teachers: be in a union.

    What you could do is to try to find some less challenging schools so you don't have to go to the toughest schools, although that will of course limit you in finding work.

    If you need any help choosing a union, search this site for recommendations.

    On a separate note, if you would like to read a good book on behaviour management, I can suggest Taking Care of Behaviour by Paul Dix which has a lot of useful advice and strategies you can use right away for both primary and secondary.

    The second rule of supply: forget the day after it is done and start fresh the next day.

    Take care and let us know if you get fixed up with a union.

  4. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    As Pepper advises, tomorrow's another day. It's a storm in a teacup but the school has to be impartical and investigate every report of alleged inappropriateness even if they do suspect the student is being vindictive. We live in litigious times.

    Also, some children are too empowered and distrusting of adults. It takes more time than we have to get past those barriers.

    It happens to us all.

    There is plenty of advice and information about non-confrontational intervention when a student is misbehaving. It's a rare person who has completely orderly lessons every time. It's not your fault if a student refuses to do as they are asked and then decides to make an issue of it. Just let justice be done and don't be driven into an overly defensive stance by SMT.

    Many schools have quite low expectations of supply teachers so as Pepper says, you need the assurance of union back up in the extremely unlikely event of a dispute.
  5. Elainewhybro

    Elainewhybro New commenter

    Thanks Pepper5 and nearmiss for your replies! I am a member of the NUT so no worries on that front and you're both right..I will try to put it behind me now. At least the girls class teacher has been forewarned..if she did it to me and enjoyed the attention she received I wouldn't put it past her to do it again. Maybe she doesn't get the attention she deserves at home...feel a bit sorry for her really! Jomaimai...that's terrible..a supply at my daughters secondary school got sent home..but he did tell all the kids to 'get your f*****g ***** in here now!' so no surprise there really!!
  6. teachingking123

    teachingking123 Established commenter

    When you go to any school you will get some trouble makes and students that you'll need to know about.

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