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So, you don't think you will ever have an allegation made against you, eh?

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by binaryhex, Jul 3, 2017.

  1. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter


    Think again. If you start teaching, any student can and will make allegations against you. This means that you will not know what the allegations are for months, will be suspended, could be interviewed by the police, will have a black mark against your name for your entire career, may have to state the nature of your 'crime' on every job application form you fill in until you retire, could have a breakdown as a result and will have to try and prove your innocence in almost impossible circumstances. If you return to school, you will have to carry on teaching your accuser, as if nothing had happened. They will get no reprimand or sanction of any kind.

    Think very carefully before becoming a teacher. Can you handle the stress and stigma of being accused by a child of something inappropriate, just because they didn't like you putting them into a detention for not doing homework?
  2. teachingspurs

    teachingspurs New commenter

    Again, clear off you troll.
  3. Piscean1

    Piscean1 Senior commenter

    I don't generally feed trolls but I need to inject some accuracy into this.

    The last school I worked in where a pupil made a malicious allegation against a member of staff had that student out on a managed move faster than you could blink. They said it wasn't fair on the teacher whose career had been jeopardised to have to work with her so it was bye bye and don't let the door hit you on the way out.

    Not all schools will ignore such behaviour and it's not fair to paint that picture.
  4. mandala1

    mandala1 Occasional commenter

    I have worked with 100s of trainees and early career teachers. I could count the number of teachers who have had an allegation made against them on the fingers of one hand.
  5. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    How many is that then? One or five? If it's five then that's rather alarming! So five percent of teachers have an allegation in their early years. In a 30 year teaching career with 5% of teachers getting an allegation every say 4 years then that's nearly half off all teachers having been subject to allegations.
    cys2017, BetterNow, blazer and 2 others like this.
  6. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    "I have worked with 100s of trainees and early career teachers. I could count the number of teachers who have had an allegation made against them on the fingers of one hand."

    You are not in a position to follow up each trainee and collect statistics; it is highly unlikely you will ever hear about them, for all the usual reasons but mainly confidentiality, embarrassment etc.

    Try doing a quick search on how many teachers face an allegation by organisations that are in a position to collect stats like Unions e.g.

    "More than one in five school and college staff (22 per cent) surveyed had been the target of a false allegation by a pupil while one in seven had been subjected to a false accusations by a pupil’s parent or family friend. Often the allegations by the pupil were made because they “didn’t like being told off by school or college staff”."

    You'll find official stats of anywhere between a seventh to a third of teachers depending on your source, and for many, it is a devastating experience that has lead to depression, self-doubt, marriage break-ups, end of careers and for a small number even suicide. Nothing has been done to protect the teacher faced with unfounded allegations, which 97% of them are (NASUWT stats).

    Prospective teachers need to understand the real risks of the career they are thinking of entering, and to go into it with eyes wide open. That is after all the purpose of this forum. Teaching is hell for many serving teachers; the real danger of false allegations and having mud stick over child abuse allegations, mental illnesses bought on by workload and stress, bullying managements who are desperate to meet their own targets, poor pay, no social life, very long hours etc etc.
    vhsemper, BW12345 and Shedman like this.
  7. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

  8. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    pepper5 likes this.
  9. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    We are all just one false accusation away from physical and mental breakdown, the loss of our families, homes and careers and I must say that I agree with binaryhex, teaching these days is a profession to avoid.
  10. mandala1

    mandala1 Occasional commenter

    Actually I am and you are talking dangerous b0110cks.
  11. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    Hi Mandala. Some great points made. Thanks. See the links provided, by organisations who have collected data or looked at data collected by organisations and you will that find official stats of anywhere between a seventh to a third of teachers depending on your source have reported an allegation against them, with devastating consequences in some instances.
    vlrynn likes this.
  12. mandala1

    mandala1 Occasional commenter

    You have a touching faith in 'research' and 'statistics'.

    And you are **** at irony.
    drvs likes this.
  13. mandala1

    mandala1 Occasional commenter

    That was c r @ p by the way.
  14. binaryhex

    binaryhex Lead commenter

    Good point manadala1. A good starting point is to look at stats collected by organisations who are in a position to collect those stats, like Unions who support most victims of allegations, and to then look at any research. Anecdotal or personal opinions are often swayed by personal experience, lack of objectivity or prejudice. Could you post the links to data or research you have that contradicts the Union data and research, please? That would be fantastically great and should help prospective teachers get a balanced set of viewpoints. Thanks and have a lovely weekend.
    GarthW and Mrsmumbles like this.
  15. drvs

    drvs Star commenter

  16. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    Yesterday, I had a student say to me that if I didn't get off his case regarding work he hadn't done he'd tell his head of year I'd touched his ar#e. I told him to go ahead. I'm not going to be intimidated by that little sh* t and I passed his threat on to the hoy in question. I've got little to lose with two weeks to go before retirement but younger staff would feel threatened. This isn't the first time such things have been said to me. If you are a new teacher you must expect some sort of malicious allegation or threat at some stage so never have students alone, make sure you are always in view of others, never touch any student anywhere and for goodness sake join a union, the chances are you will need representation at some point.
  17. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    HI Shedman

    Thank you for your post. That is a terrible story.

    As you say, because you are leaving you didn't feel anxious, but if that had been a supply teacher or someone less experienced like a NQT, they may have felt very frightened by such a threat. I do hope the HOY deals with this and doesn't just let it go.

    Every word you say is true - especially the advice at the end of your post about always staying in view of others, never touching a student anywhere, and to ensure joining a union.

    Anyone who has worked in schools for any length of time and observed will know there will always be students who are capable of making trouble and will do so and have zero regard on how that my affect their victim. It may be only a handful, but it only takes that one time to try to make trouble which can have serious consequences.

    You were right not to be intimidated shedman and perhaps teachers in initial teacher training need to be taught how to deal with such threats.
    Shedman, agathamorse and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  18. Shedman

    Shedman Star commenter

    I've also had the 'We saw you looking at so and so and we know what you're thinking and what you would like to do so just make sure you treat us nice or your secret may get out.' when I was a much younger and, dare I say, a little better looking i.e. no moobs, beer belly and a full head of hair. Nothing has ever come of it because I have always been very wary, never got physically too close to any student and followed the rules in my previous post. However, anything that has been said to me in a suggestive or intimidating manner I have always passed on to the appropriate pastoral bod and my HOD and/or SLT. Keep your back covered at all times with both students and staff.
  19. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    That is even more shocking.

    Teachers must follow your example and report anything like that immediately and not be intimidated by students out to make trouble.

    I am so sad that schools have come to be places where you always have to be wary of students and what one may say or do to make trouble for a teacher just for fun.
    agathamorse, vlrynn and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  20. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    This year I've been doing a maternity cover at a lovely, middle class school. My colleagues are generally lovely, and the kids are generally lovely, the sort who say 'Hi, miss!' when they see you in the corridor, or 'Thanks, miss!' at the end of a lesson. However, underneath the loveliness, the following complaints have been made about me:

    - Y12 girl who wants to go to Oxbridge complained about me to HOD because I wouldn't give her quotes to learn for 'Tess of the D'Urbervilles'. HOD told her where to get off. She complained again later about something else. HOD observed a lesson and said it was fine (well planned, great resources).
    - Same girl's mother told me at parents' eve that I'm a carp teacher, and she wasn't doing as well as she should because of my 'teaching methods' - in the AS mock she'd written one paragraph because she couldn't think of any key events in 'Tess', a novel where the heroine is raped, has a baby who dies, is left by her husband on her wedding night, murders someone, and is put to death for it. Hmmm, key events, key events...
    - A Y8 girl's parent verbally attacked me at parents' eve because her daughter was apparently 'terrified' of me using an everyday idiom that the other students had found amusing. Apparently I was 'topic of conversation around the dinner table'. Well, after that parents' eve she was topic of conversation around my dinner table! My NQT mentor had to observe a lesson, just to feedback to the parent that the class is comfortable in my presence, rather than terrified.
    - A Y8 boy lied, telling his HOY that I'd said he'd 'never amount to anything' after an exam. He'd done fine in the exam, and I'd actually said the exam was meaningless in my opinion because it wasn't geared towards what we'd actually been learning, and they were all doing fine. I don't know what the outcome of this BS is, as it only happened recently.
    - A Y10 boy lied to his dad, saying that students always sing and walk out of my lesson. Neither of these things has ever happened. I have 2 TAs with that class every lesson, and they can attest to that. I told the parent this, he replied 'I'd rather believe my son'. His parents are still complaining about me, wanting him moved to another set, as recently as last week.

    Basically, after an awful PGCE, and an awful first part of my NQT year last year, and all of this **** this year, I don't want to ever teach in the UK again. This summer I'm going abroad to work at an international school. If it doesn't work out over there then I'll be looking for a new career.

    The kids mentioned above either have no resilience (the Oxbridge wannabe), or are arrogant and lazy (Y10 boy, who is like a sleepy koala in my lessons), or are just spiteful because they weren't allowed to sit with their mates, or think I've slighted them in some way (Y8 boy and girl). Now, the school (fortunately!) knows BS when it smells it, but still has to act on complaints. The things that bother me are a) that parents are actually believing the rubbish their kids tell them, and complaining about it; b) that there are complaints procedures that the kids are aware of and know how to action - e.g. the Y8 kid showed up at his HOY's office and said 'I want to make a complaint about Mrs BlueSky', that shows he's done it before. Why are ridiculous complaints like this even entertained?

    If they expect a leaving speech from me, they'll be getting the above :)

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