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Sack A Drunk Teacher?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by Elohim, Jun 11, 2011.

  1. I work at an international school. A teacher decided to get drunk at night - and then didn't show for work until the afternoon the following day - which gave extra work for other teachers. Fortunately, none of the primary school children saw his drunken state.
    Would your school sack him?

  2. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I work in a day school. If a teacher calls in sick with a migraine in the morning, but if well enough to come to work in the afternoon, no-one assumes it was a hangover and so suggests the teacher should be sacked.

    If the teacher was not on duty in the evening, they are presumably free to drink should they so wish and to excess if it appeals to them. A stern slap on the wrist from the HT and a reminder that a hangover isn't really 'sickness' would probably all that is needed for a first offence.

    Goodness if everyone who ever had a morning off from their post for a hangover was sacked, there would be a serious unemployment problem in the country!
  3. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    But if your international school is not in Britain, or the teacher concerned was on duty when drunk, then yes the very possibly would be sacked.

    As with many things, depends on context.
  4. nick909

    nick909 Star commenter

    Pulling a sickie for having a hangover is pretty poor show - I'd expect a disciplinary for such a thing myself. Although, more fool him for admitting to it and not just phoning up with an imagined ailment.
    Not done it myself. I have worked through a fair few hangovers though (increasingly fewer these days, it has to be said). Not fun.
    Working with a hangover is quite different than being drunk during the working day though, which is what the thread title suggests.
  5. Milgod

    Milgod Established commenter


    I'm not saying sack right away, but you are pretty much saying it is fine to have a day off with a hangover. You should not drink to excess the night before you are due to work full stop. Part of the attitude many teachers have that seem to take days off because of a little headache or tummy not feeling quite right. Whilst there are those of us who realise we get a **** load of holidays to enjoy ourselves and power through the rest of the time. With so many teachers looking for work maybe we should think about getting rid of those who don't actually care about doing their job.

    I am also not saying people can't be truly sick, but we all know a teacher or two who take time off when they don't really need to.
  6. baitranger

    baitranger Occasional commenter

    People in certain occupations should not come in to work as usual if they have hangovers.
    If I had a choice, I would prefer not to be a passenger in a bus or train operated by a person with a hangover and neither would I like to have brain surgery if the surgeon had a hangover.
    The reasons are almost too obvious to state. A hangover can cause a reduction in reaction times and a reduction in manual dexterity, among other unpleasant effects. So in some cases, coming into work with a hangover can cause death.Of course, the amount someone has consumed and their tolerance to alcohol etc are factors too, but in general, it's better to be "off sick" than to cause death or suffering to others.
    In the case of a teacher with a hangover, the potential for damage to others is more limited and if the teacher has a hangover only rarely and is able to set classes work and mark it when the hangover has passed, the damage to others could be very little.

  7. Looking at the wording of your original post and reply to the other fellow, it is pretty clear you have made your mind up and want other people to agree with you. Your tone is judgemental...

    I am sure you are a fantastic teacher, who is in complete control of your life, planning, marriage, assessment, and resourcing, but how about showing a little compassion or empathy.

    If you are not SMT, perhaps you should defer to their judgement, since they will have facts available which you do not. Does your colleague have depression? a bereavement? Are they young and need a mentor who is supportive and non-judgemental? Is that colleague alcoholic? Is that colleague being supported by you and the other colleagues, or is she/he feeling harassed and pressurized, therefore turning to the bottle for some sympathy? I knew a colleague who had been raped and became alcoholic and irresponsible for a while afterwards due to trauma. She we fire her?

    Whatever, a judgemental stance on your part, will not support that teacher making choices which support the children.

    Good luck!
  8. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    Heyyyy wait a minute, don't tell me off. I'm a good girl I am, never gone to work with a hangover. (Rarely actually had a hangover!)

    I didn't say it was fine. I did say a stern slap on the wrist for a FIRST offence.

    I agree that some do take time off when they don't really need to and people like me haven't had a day off in years, but hey that is the way of the world. No point stressing over it.
  9. What an idiot I am! .... Sorry, but I forgot to mention that the teacher was on a field trip - and got drunk at night on site. He was supposed to be on night watch. He was supposed to be one of the teachers waking the children up and organising activities the next day - but was in bed with a hangover. The other teachers were not impressed.
  10. A teacher can be sacked in these circumstances if gross misconduct can be proved. The school will have a policy in place that defines what constitutes gross misconduct. If the teacher was intoxicated while in charge of students he can't be surprised if the school summarily dispenses with his services .
  11. Be interesting to know whether you are asking this question as a manager who possibly has to discipline the teacher in question or a colleague who got left holding the babies so to speak.

  12. I am asking the question as a colleague who can't stand the guy who did it. I hope he gets the sack. I wasn't on the field trip myself - but this is not the first time colleagues, including myself, have been victim of his unprofessionalism.
  13. lol at your very frank response. It's very refreshing.

    So why do you think the chap in question has been allowed to get away with his behaviour for so long?

  14. minnieminx

    minnieminx New commenter

    I assume whoever was the leader on the course has spoken to the HT, who decides what if any action to take.

    He won't get sacked because people who don't like him gossip about him that is for sure!

    But yes, nice reply!
  15. Administrators at our school are just too soft and not authoritarian. It hasn't been the most professional school where the laid-back tone has often been reflected by one or two teachers putting their feet up on the staffroom couch and falling asleep.
    But our principal has recently expressed his acknowledgement of the school's slackness in a personal conversation with myself, and his desire to change things. Hopefully his newly adopted attitude will allow push to come to shove when I suggest that I am no longer comfortable with working with him - and that he should be fired.
  16. Is the head at your school fairly new?
    If he is, its possible change is on its way. If the head isn't new, I think it'll be much harder.
  17. Ramjam

    Ramjam New commenter

    Although I sympathise with your suffering at his hands I'm kind of stuck with John 8:7 .
    Perhaps the thinly veiled dislike of his colleagues is what drove him to drink.
    What's the origin of your unusual poster name?
  18. Milgod

    Milgod Established commenter

    Hold your horses sunshine. I didn't post the original topic. I don't know this teacher or what has happened. I am talking in general about the slacker attitude that many have about coming in to work.
  19. You have taken my argument to a whole different level, and to the very core of my moral convictions. As a bible believing Christian I would say that you are right in quoting John 8:7. I haven't taken grace into consideration and I knew it all along.
  20. "John 8.7" ...sounds like something out of the bible "thou shall not drink " perhaps?

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