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NQT with no references.

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Shanhopzx, Apr 27, 2016.

  1. Shanhopzx

    Shanhopzx New commenter

    Hi guys,

    I am just finishing my third year of university and I am applying for jobs. I have been very successful in interviews and teaching however my references are letting me down. I have received nothing but positive comments in all interviews, yet schools have said they simply can't employ me because of my references.

    I have been refused a reference from my last school placement because of the 'end part of my placement' - due to two family members passing I became slightly withdrawn and my grades went down, however I did not at any point receive a fail. My university reference is put together using comments from my previous placement final report, however this was not put together by my mentor but by another member of staff that did not write a single positive thing, despite constantly being told I am working to a high standard and to ignore any comments from said senior.

    My placement before this have refused also, saying they do not remember me and placements in between have said they cannot provide a reference due to me only being there a week or two at most.

    I therefore have one satisfactory reference from university and a refusal from the other schools. What do I do in this situation? Could I put down a reference from a previous job despite it not linking to schools?

    I am very keen to start my career however it seems that it is going to be almost impossible to find employment.

    Any advice will help!
    Shan x
  2. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Employers must give a reference if:

    • there was a written agreement to do so

    You'd have to find out from university if they have an agreement with placement institutions that references must be given if requested. If no such written agreement exists then you are up that creek without a paddle, I fear.

    Go back to some of these placements and re-plead your case.

    Ask university to apply pressure on your behalf.

    If none of these approaches yields a result then you must do the best you can with what you have. You certainly could offer a reference from another sector and schools could choose to disregard it. Is yours a shortage subject? All may not be lost but I suggest you exercise a great deal of charm and persistence. Good luck.
  3. Shanhopzx

    Shanhopzx New commenter

    Apparently the school have no legal obligation to do anything I have requested, even to allow me to speak to the mentor. This school was extremely unfair and due to a misunderstanding very early on, the senior seemed to make things extremely difficult for me, even begging the university to pull my grades down after I received 1's and 2's from the observers. She seemed to have a lot of power as my grade on this particular occasion was dragged down to a 3, despite this woman not having been in the lesson I was teaching.

    I am doing the Primary Education course and I am very open to any year groups at all, so hopefully this will show how committed and confident I am.
  4. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Surely your university has a record of how you got on. It's simply not good enough to say, "We don't remember you."

    Well, you'll just have to very persuasive on the letter of application.
  5. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    seems very odd to me.
    grumpydogwoman likes this.
  6. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I am reserving judgement @wanet :)
    Middlemarch likes this.
  7. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    You need a positive reference from your University Tutor, and from a Placement school, to be considered for teaching posts.

    Unfortunately, even if you were employed by the school, there is no obligation to write a reference. Even less so as a trainee, unless there is a specific agreement between your university and the school.

    Can your Head write a negative reference for you? Or refuse to write one? Can you see what was written...

    If you have reason to believe, from what you have been told by schools, that there is an unfair or inaccurate reference being sent, then you should contact the school that received it, asking for a copy, and then contact your union.

    I do hope that you are in a union.

    Join a Union. Yes, now!

    Best wishes

  8. Shanhopzx

    Shanhopzx New commenter

    My first two placement
    One of these has now agreed to be a reference, however the other is adamant they do not remember me despite the placement only being last year and university correspondence.
  9. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Well, without prior written agreement you cannot compel them to provide a reference so you'll just have to give up on that.

    It may be simply a case of the relevant person having left and you had already said that the reference from your university is compiled from the placement reports they had received. All may not be lost. You can still apply.

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