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The disappeared..

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by Jolly_Roger1, Apr 2, 2017.

  1. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Lead commenter

    I wonder how many of you have known a 'disappearing' teacher? At my last school, after it had become an academy, overnight, people with whom you had worked for years just 'disappeared': one day they were there, the next gone without comment from SMT, or anyone else. After a while, you got to recognise the signs that this had happened. When you casually remarked, "I haven't seen so-and-so for a few days", those 'in the know' would exchange embarrassed glances and pretend they hadn't heard you. That this 'night and fog' manoeuvre was premeditated was made obvious by someone new being ready and waiting to take over the timetable of the 'disappeared' the very next morning. Much later, perhaps a laconic announcement would be made, "X has decided not to return to the school."
     
  2. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    I am one of the 'disappeared'. I had resigned but was asked to leave the same after I sent this email to my Head:

    https://exscienceteacherblog.wordpress.com/2016/04/30/a-final-letter-to-my-headteacher/

    Email sent in the morning, called out of my last Year 7 lesson in the afternoon, told not to come back. Yes I wanted to go but a kick in the nuts after 27 years of service to the school. I know a few others who also went in the same way from my school.

    My main concern was, what the kids would think; you know how rumours go around.

    Fortunately, for me I was able to start my new job a couple of days later.
     
  3. saluki

    saluki Occasional commenter

    Yep. A maths teacher 'disappeared' last year after poor student feedback. They tried really hard but their face didn't fit. Then it was difficult to find a replacement and more people just followed out of the door
     
  4. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Lead commenter

    @Compassman: An excellent letter to the Head, which obviously he or she did not want to read. You are fortunate in being able to carry on with your career at a different school but so many are not able to do this, as 'mud sticks'. So many older, experienced (read 'expensive) for my school just disappeared, or were put through the mill of capability, or false allegations, which ruined their health and their careers. One notable case was our physics teacher, who the school tried to 'fit up' by 'discovering '****' on his laptop. Fortunately for him, the police showed that the laptop had been in the school's possession at the time the material was downloaded.
     
    Norsemaid, sabrinakat, bevdex and 2 others like this.
  5. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    Sometimes you have to tell them how it is and that is what I did. No regrets. I had got a job outside of teaching so no new school to go to. Never been happier!

    Many, including those from my old school, of course, have left with gagging orders and agreed references so cannot speak out about their treatment. Of course this means if gives unscrupulous Head's carte blanche to carry on treating people like this. People have left for the most spurious of reasons.

    How awful of a school to try and fit up a teacher in such a way as you describe above.

    You are also correct in that many teachers have had their health and careers ruined by the way they have been treated.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  6. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I am also one of the 'disappeared'.
    When children asked the person who had been my TA where I was and she told them I'd left (not much else she could say really) she was hauled in to the AH's office and told she was not to mention me at all to anyone. If anyone asked outright (as this group of children had) she was to tell them she didn't know. (Yeps that would be so reassuring for a year 1 child!)
     
  7. Compassman

    Compassman Star commenter

    I met a pupil a couple of weeks after I'd left and they asked me where I had gone so I told them in no uncertain terms what had happened. They were shocked and told me they'd pass it round the school.

    That felt good!
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
  8. mrkeys

    mrkeys Occasional commenter

    Worked in a 'good school' that became an academy.
    120 staff left/disappeared over the next 18 months.
    Many overnight.
    Many on confidentiality clauses.
    Academy now closed.
    Executive Principle resigned/pushed out.
    Nothing has been achieved except dozens of decent hard working staff have had their careers ruined.
     
    Happyregardless and pepper5 like this.
  9. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Occasional commenter

    I think it'd take me a week to clear out my desk, office and stock cupboard. I presume the disappeared are told to do this at a weekend.

    Now I think about it I should be retiring within the next decade, I'd better get started!
     
    Compassman likes this.
  10. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Lead commenter

    @Compassman & @PeterQuint

    @mrkeys: Other then my old school still being open, exactly the same as you described happened there.

    The experience of the poor sod whom the new management tried to 'fit up' acted as a wake up call to the rest of us, as to the real character of the people with whom we were dealing (or, more like it, who were dealing with us!). Even more appalling was that they got away with a criminal act; they even tried to make someone in the IT department carry the can. Ultimately, the management's behaviour worked in its favour, as some staff decided to get out before their turn came. That such people should be in charge of our children's education.

    @PeterQuint AFAIK, the 'disappeared just left there stuff at school, unless their friends spirited some of it away and passed it on.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
    PeterQuint and Compassman like this.
  11. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    I am one of the disappeared, too...
     
  12. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Lead commenter

    I am sorry to hear that you too have 'joined our club'.
     
  13. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    Three years or so ago I was talking to a Polish RE teacher at my place in a staff meeting.

    I never saw her again.
     
  14. saluki

    saluki Occasional commenter

    Oh yes. I once went to a Principal's feedback meeting where staff gave their views. I met a very nice lady who gave a lot of sensible feedback about underfunding in her department. Never saw her again.
     
    Happyregardless likes this.
  15. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    And in my experience now has a very lucrative 'consultancy ' post or even better, a new headship specialising in 'dealing with difficult staff/issues'.
     
  16. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    I once watched a brilliant new member of SLT literally come apart at the seams thanks to relentless bullying from one of the nastiest man ever to run a school in this country.

    No real details but it all ended very messily and I've often wondered what happened to him.
     
    pepper5 likes this.
  17. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    I think I started it! :D
     
  18. PeterQuint

    PeterQuint Occasional commenter

    I suspect many of our 'disappeared' are not to be as pitied as those labouring under the same label in 1980s South American dictatorships.

    For the teaching disappeared there's no shallow grave in the desert 100 yards from a rarely-used highway..

    For them there's often a hefty 5 figure pay out followed by rapid re-employment elsewhere. And that'll be re-employment with the savvy to research the places they apply first to ensure it's not being run like the hell hole they've just left.

    I suspect those offered 'a package' which they don't won't to take stick around for a while, make their feelings known, and that everyone knows exactly what's happened to them when they eventually go. Those who disappear overnight are far more likely to have been made an offer they'd have been stupid to refuse.

    If 'they' come for me and make me an offer I don't like, I'll stick out for more. I might not get it, but it'll be the talk of the staffroom while I mull over fresh offers, etc. The day I'm sat in the staffie one moment and gone the next is the day when they've offered me a very attractive offer indeed; one about which I don't need time to think.

    Not always the case I'm sure, but more often than not.
     
    1 person likes this.
  19. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    A five figure payout???? :eek:
    Not in my local authority. Not for any of the teachers who left the dreadful place I know about after terrible bullying.

    And payouts, however large or small, come with confidentiality clauses in the agreement, which means one cannot tell all and sundry what happened.
     
    pepper5 and Anonymity like this.
  20. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Five-figure payouts? o_O In your dreams! ;)
     

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