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Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by aa002, Aug 22, 2019.

  1. aa002

    aa002 New commenter


    My previous school have rejected giving me any references. I have tried to seek new employment but nobody is hiring me due to this. What can I do?
  2. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Is this school in England?

    State school or Private school?

    Why have they refused to give you a reference?

    Are you in a Union? Have you involved them?
  3. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I think technically they don't have to give a reference unless it's in an agreement that they will. It seems like they are trying to make life difficult for you because surely they would expect to obtain references for prospective candidates. Union advice is your best bet.make sure all contact is in writing.
  4. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    Have they actually refused to give you references or are they working at the usual speed of a school office?
    Has your union mentioned to them that "what goes around comes around"?! Word will eventually get out they are being awkward, if they are, they will struggle to recruit as much as you are finding a job.

    They don't have to give a reference but it is very usual to give a basic "aa002 worked at Our Pathetic School from 1.9.18 to 31.5.19. No safeguarding issues." Which is similar to not writing a reference but with more academies centralising their HR, this will become more standard.

    Keep us posted
  5. aa002

    aa002 New commenter

    this is in the middle east so there are no unions. I have no safeguarding issues but one school contacted my previous school and they said they refuse to give a reference
  6. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    A rather important piece of information it would have been helpful to know before!

    How long were you at the school? Do you know why they won't give you a reference? Have you asked them directly?

    Where are you seeking new jobs, in the ME or in the UK?
    DexterDexter likes this.
  7. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Do you think they are refusing a reference because they didn't think much of you, or because they haven't realised that in this country you cannot get a job without?

    If the latter, it might be worth contacting them and explaining that a school here is not allowed to hire you without at least a brief reference confirming the dates that you worked there and that there were no safeguarding issues. Possibly your union could help you produce a draft of a brief and bland reference that you could pass on to them so that all they have to do is copy and paste. Use other referees for more detailed references, and explain to schools you're applying to that you've given an extra referee as your previous school isn't usually willing to give references.
    DexterDexter likes this.
  8. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I think you would need to tell future schools the exact reason for your lack of reference e. g. It is the school's policy to not provide a reference, I have this in writing to confirm. Is it your old HT that's being tricky? Could you take it further and mention this to the governors?
    (sorry, I have 0% tolerance towards the HTs who make life hell for teachers)

    "Unwilling to provide a reference" would lead prospective HTs to speculate as to why. Do not say this to future HTs.

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