1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

Reference problem

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by MrsBridgewater, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. MrsBridgewater

    MrsBridgewater New commenter

    Hope this works as I am posting from my iPhone on holiday.

    Had a phone call from the school I start work at in September chasing up my references - they had asked for three and only one had replied. I signed the contract back in the spring term so had no idea that this was an issue. I have sent my now ex HOD a Facebook message but I have no way of contacting the headteacher.

    What can I do to ensure that the references are in place by September? And is it normal for contracts to be signed prior to references being checked? I can't put my hands on that contract as I am on holiday, but while the offer letter said 'subject to references' I am pretty sure the contract didn't mention references and I assumed that receiving the contract meant that the references had been done.
     
  2. Morninglover

    Morninglover Star commenter

    I'm surprised that your new school is expecting you to chase up the references when they have by had months to do so! If you need to do something l would phone your old school and speak to the head's pa, or someone in the office and ask them to contact the HT and your new school.
     
  3. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    This sort of thing really gets my goat! I think that a LAW needs passing whereby failure to provide a reference is a criminal offence (As much as Middlemarch will disagree with me on this!)

    However I do have some sympathy with heads if schools send their own bespoke 17 page questionnaire as a reference which includes, amongst other things, the candidate's toilet habits.

    If you are on a 7 day holiday I would forget it now and worry about it on your return. If (lucky so and so) you have Foxtrot Oscared until September then contact the referees or their PA/school yourself.
     
  4. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    All you can really do is send your new school your head's school e-mail address, the school phone number and the school address.

    If there seems to be career threatening stasis as the new term runs up, talk to the senior people at your union.
     
  5. Morninglover

    Morninglover Star commenter

    Just a thought - if the OP's new school hasn't sorted out their DBS clearance by the time term starts (as this is presumably why they need the references), presumably they will either be on garden leave (but full pay) until the school gets what it needs, or the school will have to provide another teacher/PA to 'babysit' the OP as they teach...Or have I got this wrong?
     
  6. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    From experience.



    The highly qualified, graduate teacher of A Level lessons, has a TA assigned to their every class for 1/2 a term (or however long it takes).

    That was a wonderful use of my taxpayers money
     
  7. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    Unless someone has a statutory right or a post-employment contractual right to a reference, it is worth bearing in mind that the employer is in a very strong position. People who lodge grievances ought to be reminded that alienating the very person on whom they will rely for a reference is not a clever move. An employer's silence is very deafening, and as far as I know there is no remedy in law.
     
  8. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    DBS is independent of references.
     
  9. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    'Unless someone has a statutory right or a post-employment contractual right to a reference, it is worth bearing in mind that the employer is in a very strong position.'

    Yes, too strong in fact. A situation that you would hope would have been left behind in the attitudes of Victorian England (if indeed references existed then. 'I'm sorry, but Mr Smith is too busy putting cross beam back on skew on treadle to write the parchment!')

    And a situation that probably wont change until we get a proper Left Wing government in charge. Which will never happen, as its too radical for the salmon and cucumber sandwiches and Pimms brigade of the country that make up roughly 78.6% of all citizens south of the M4.
     
  10. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    So you will be voting for Jezzers then, STAG? [​IMG]



    Best wishes

    ___________________________________________________

    Meet Theo on line on the TES JobSeekers Forum, where she answers jobseeking and careers queries regularly each week.
     
  11. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    Indeed I would TG. But I am well aware he hasn't got a cat in hell's chance of becoming PM in a conservative island like ours.

    (Why much of the working classes self flaggerate(sp?) by voting Tory I don't know but then I'm too young to have experienced the 70s and their strikes!)
     
  12. mrswallow

    mrswallow Occasional commenter

    self flaggerate(sp?)

    Flagellate. To answer the question posed though, because the Tories always promise jam today, and no one is interested in jam tomorrow. Mrs Swallow looked up from her browsing the Guardian yesterday, looked at me and mentioned how glad she was we emigrated when we did.

    To the OP, keep chasing the references. Polite emails bcc'ed to the union. Or even cc'ed to the union. There ought to be law about references, but...
     
  13. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    [​IMG]

    There is. And it says that there is no obligation to give one, unless it says so in your contract. The legal requirement is for a reference to be fair and factually accurate. If, because of negligent misstatement (inclusion of inaccurate or omission of important information), you suffer detriment (loss), you may claim damages.

    Best wishes

    ___________________________________________________

    Meet Theo on line on the TES JobSeekers Forum, where she answers jobseeking and careers queries regularly each week.
     
  14. mrswallow

    mrswallow Occasional commenter

    Ah. Fair enough. Well, slightly unfair perhaps.. This may sound harsh, but isn't it common practice to check with your referees that they are okay with supplying you with a reference?
     
  15. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    'To answer the question posed though, because the Tories always promise jam today, and no one is interested in jam tomorrow.'

    (apologies, I can't do those white quotation things!)

    I thought it was the other way round, the Tories promising pain now for gain later, and Labour pleasure now in return for bankruptcy later!
     
  16. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Mrsmallow - yes, it should be common practice to check beforehand and in my case, let my current school know of applications and when successful, emailed my previous HOD and headteacher to let them know (and thank them) and informed my current HOD and headteacher in person (with thanks again).

    However in OP's defence - perhaps they did ask and assumed all was right particularly as they were shortlisted, interviewed, offered the job, accepted it and signed contracts. Now, they are worried because references haven't come through...reasonable anxiety in my opinion. Hopefully, all will be sorted but the situation is not of the OP's making...

    best wishes
     
  17. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter

    Common practice.

    Common courtesy.

    Common sense!

    Do I have to tell my Head I am applying elsewhere?

    Best wishes

    ___________________________________________________

    Meet Theo on line on the TES JobSeekers Forum, where she answers jobseeking and careers queries regularly each week.



     
  18. old_dobbin

    old_dobbin Occasional commenter

    What about if a school normally gives references but doesn't give a reference to just one individual?

    "Employers often get into trouble when they start providing references for some workers but not for others. To counter allegations of unlawful discrimination or victimisation, employers should endeavour to treat individuals consistently — drawing up a written policy on giving references and sticking to it."

    http://findlaw.co.uk/law/employment/employment_law_basics/getting_a_job/500307.html
     
  19. mrswallow

    mrswallow Occasional commenter

    'However in OP's defence - perhaps they did ask and assumed all was right particularly as they were shortlisted, interviewed, offered the job, accepted it and signed contracts. Now, they are worried because references haven't come through...reasonable anxiety in my opinion.'

    Gosh yes, completely reasonable and very understandable. I'm a bit puzzled by the fact the HoD has been sent a Facebook message, and the Head cannot be contacted. Surely the OP should have an 'official' email address for both these individuals? Even if you are on holiday, it isn't beyond the realms of possibility to check into a cyber cafe, or local library and email from there.
     
  20. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    If you write a character reference and include professional information, you might also find yourself in trouble.
     

Share This Page