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truancy - my responsibilities

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by grantgust, Jul 19, 2017.

  1. grantgust

    grantgust New commenter

    hi all,
    in a group I never taught, an older student left my classroom before the end of the school day, claiming they had an authorized appointment. They should have signed out before leaving the premises. However as the student left and I contacted reception to inform them about it, it appeared that said student had not signed out nor had an appointment. Parents were contacted within 10 minutes of student leaving. I know now I should have contacted reception earlier and ensured said student had an appointment or followed them to reception, however I made the mistake of trusting them to go there on their own.
    I have now spent the whole journey back crying and worrying about that student wellbeing first of all, and the implications I might face for this secondly. I am worried sick I will be charged with gross misconduct and prohibited to teach or asked to leave my job. I am ready to face the consequences of allowing the student to go sign out without double checking in advance... however do you reckon there are grounds for this to happen?
  2. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    I am a bit confused - "a group you never taught" but you were responsible for this child's disappearance.
    I'm guessing it was some kind of cover lesson with a group you didn't know.
    The child told you a lie,and you let them out.
    You told reception, but not instantly, probably because you were dealing with the rest of the class.
    You couldn't follow the child to reception, because you had the rest of the class to supervise.
    In retrospect, you should not have let the child out without documentation. Sometimes though, kids don't have notes (or they forge them) and you have to make a best call. You used your professional judgement.
    Gross misconduct usually involves physical harm to a child. Unless your school management is unreasonable you are unlikely to get more than a "good talking to".
    Are we talking primary or secondary?
    If secondary, an older student should be able to take a certain amount of responsibility for themselves. If primary, then the child shouldn't have been able to get out of the school unobserved. (School failure, not yours).
  3. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    If a pupil wants to truant they can just as easily ask to the toilet and then leave as make up an appointment. You should have phoned first but letting parents know within 10 minutes seems like prompt action was taken. The school may want to clarify policy, you may get told off for not following current policy but I can't see this being something you'd get sacked or struck off for.
    pepper5 likes this.
  4. Alldone

    Alldone Senior commenter

    I think it is entirely the schools fault that this happened - they should have systems in place where you are informed that pupils need to leave. At my school, anything like this is flagged up as an alert as we take a register in SIMS at the start of the lesson.
    grantgust and pepper5 like this.
  5. hammie

    hammie Lead commenter

    school system problem, not yours. If you are still concerned, phone your union and ask for advice. Just having a chat with someone in the know ill help you to deal with it and move on.
    grantgust and pepper5 like this.
  6. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    You mean well, credit to you.

    Gross misconduct? Really, you are way, way overreacting. A call to parents within 10 minutes is prompt.
    pepper5 likes this.
  7. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    I don't. I think it is the fault of the child, their's and their's alone. The school can't micromanage every teenage pupil.
    Flere-Imsaho and grantgust like this.
  8. MarahTes

    MarahTes New commenter

    I think you did the right thing as soon as you could. Like other commentators have said there should be school policies for situations like this and you did the best you could with the information you were give.
    grantgust and pepper5 like this.

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