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Scape-goated. What can I do?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by teacheranon, Dec 20, 2011.

  1. Hi there, I would like some help/advice with a problem I am having at school. I have deliberately kept this vague. Apologies.
    5 weeks into the new term I was severely struggling with day-to-day marking (I am expected to mark all work, from all lessons, everyday) on top of which was piled assesments to mark and return within 1 week. I cracked, was in tears, Head was informed and they arrived to be very sympathetic and to offer to help with marking.
    The following week, Head again offered to help with some of day-to-day marking.
    At end of this marking, we had a chat about how (as I had mentioned already) I was not marking books as I was expected to and that this would need to change. I agreed.
    4 weeks later I was handed a report, dated for 4 weeks prior, as if Head had discovered problem with book marking independently, it added other issues I was allegedly having and then had strategies that had been put in place and targets for me to meet. Some of which were dated to have happened 2 weeks prior to me being informed of them existing.
    I was also informed that this report had been passed to the LEA.
    I questioned some of the statements verbally, but was told they were correct. I decided to shut up.
    I don't know how serious this is or how to proceed from here (other than cautiously)
    This happened a couple of weeks ago now, and I realise I should have tken more concrete action before now, but to be honest I've been desperately keeping up with marking instead.

    Any help/advice would be much appreciated.
    Thanks,
    A very tired and stressed teacher.

     
  2. Hi there, I would like some help/advice with a problem I am having at school. I have deliberately kept this vague. Apologies.
    5 weeks into the new term I was severely struggling with day-to-day marking (I am expected to mark all work, from all lessons, everyday) on top of which was piled assesments to mark and return within 1 week. I cracked, was in tears, Head was informed and they arrived to be very sympathetic and to offer to help with marking.
    The following week, Head again offered to help with some of day-to-day marking.
    At end of this marking, we had a chat about how (as I had mentioned already) I was not marking books as I was expected to and that this would need to change. I agreed.
    4 weeks later I was handed a report, dated for 4 weeks prior, as if Head had discovered problem with book marking independently, it added other issues I was allegedly having and then had strategies that had been put in place and targets for me to meet. Some of which were dated to have happened 2 weeks prior to me being informed of them existing.
    I was also informed that this report had been passed to the LEA.
    I questioned some of the statements verbally, but was told they were correct. I decided to shut up.
    I don't know how serious this is or how to proceed from here (other than cautiously)
    This happened a couple of weeks ago now, and I realise I should have tken more concrete action before now, but to be honest I've been desperately keeping up with marking instead.

    Any help/advice would be much appreciated.
    Thanks,
    A very tired and stressed teacher.

     
  3. FollyFairy

    FollyFairy Occasional commenter

    You don't say whether you are an experienced teacher or an NQT - not that it matters, but if you are an NQT you should be receiving more support that you seem to be! In teaching, there is a always an expectation to keep books marked up to date, however, to have them marked daily does seem excessive; I teach 4 different subjects at KS3 - 4 and 2 at KS5, so I always seem to have marking to do too :( Advice: 1) Get onto the phone to your union straight away 2) now that is the holidays, try to get all the marking up to date so you can start the New Year afresh 3) go through the report that you have been given, line by line, and anything you don't agree with - make a clear note separately of why you don't agree with it, backed up with evidence if possible. Also make a note of the support that the school could offer you that you think would help you overcome these issues that they have raised 4) relax and enjoy the break - by the sounds of it, you deserve it! Finally, are you happy at your school, despite everything, if not, start looking around! xx
     
  4. I agree with all that folly has said. Be careful though that this is not an informalcompetency warning and please go through this with your union so they are aware of things. good luck but have a break over xmas!
     
  5. Thank you for advice.I think I do want to look for somewhere else. That is one of the reasons this report has me so stressed. I'mnot sure how it would affect job applications.
    I was an NQT at time of my initial discussion with Head and during book marking but then completed my NQT year just before was given the report.
    Should I just keep a note of where I disagree with report for myself or should I reply to Head with it?

    In contacting the union, I would like to do that discreetly. Any advice?
    Thanks again.
     
  6. FollyFairy

    FollyFairy Occasional commenter

    I have had 7 jobs in 13 years of teaching... some schools like it if you have experience of different schools! And you would be leaving either Easter or Summer - so a good either 5 or 6 terms under your belt! Plus in your application letter you can always say that you wish to move to X school as you feel very inspired by xyz...

    then this is just mean of your HT! Lots of NQT's struggle - she should have been supporting you! Did your mentor support you? or is the HT your mentor??

    Do not reply to the HT until you have spoken to your union. In contacting your union, everything you say is confidential - within reason - ring them up or email them! I would not do this through your union rep at school, you need to contact them direct. They will not let your HT know but will support you and advise you on the best course of action.
    Be strong! xx
     
  7. They might want you out and have another NQT in then.
    Yes. it is exactly the opposite I would do: let everyone know at school that you are talking to your union. Sometimes this fact in itself is enough for the school to retreat a bit. I used to do things like inform my HoD that I would be spending lunch break sitting in the parking lot in my car because I was waiting for a phone call from my union rep. This sent them all scurrying while I had a nice quiet lunchbreak listening to music and chatting to my sister on the mobile. Worked wonders [​IMG]

     
  8. Thanks FollyFairy.
    In terms of how it would affect job aplications, I meant whether or not it would be on an employment record somewhere or if HT would mention it in any reference. Not HT as mentor but a colleague who as of December has finished at the school. Basically they had got out and had that air of 'this is no longer my problem'. When I had mentioned the incident to them (not report but initial problem and subsequent telling off about book-marking) there was not much suport there - except being offered a box of tissues.
    Spool:
    My HT is the kind to hold a grudge and from witnessing treatment of others who have got involved with unions, I think I'm best keeping a low profile.
    After a fairly restful holiday I am feeling anxious about returning and the inevitable workload that will begin again as soon as I return.
    It may come as no surprise that my new year's resolution is to get a new job.

    Happy new year.
     

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