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What are my rights?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by asleepintheback, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. asleepintheback

    asleepintheback New commenter

    Could really do with some advice…

    I have already contact my Union about the following issues so wanted to get other opinions.

    1. I started the role of Inclusion Teacher at a Primary school in September 2017. Briefly, the role was explained to me to be a mentoring, supportive role to teachers to improve and enhance differentiation and include children with SEND alongside their peers. I was successful at interview (among other things) because of my experience of successfully managing classes with high proportions of SEND. However, the role has never materialised and I have spent the year covering absent teachers, acting as a TA and ‘fire fighting’ disruptive behaviour for teachers.

    2. The position was offered (which I have a letter of employment for) as a permanent and full time post. However, I have since been told that, that was a mistake and should never have been offered as permanent because there is no budget for this and that I will have to go back to class teaching, with no extra responsibilities in September. However, this has only been told to me verbally in a very casual manner with no regard for the fact that I excepted the position in good faith and as an opportunity to advance my career. Additionally, my job title and role changed in Term 6 and I am now sharing responsibility of a year 3 class.

    3. After months (and months) of requesting a Initial Performance Management meeting (the school’s timetable says these will be complete by October) this has not happened. Nor have I had any targets set. I am due to apply to UPS in September but am unsure how this will work without targets.

    4. I am 6 months pregnant and informed my Headteacher at 8 weeks. My maternity leave starts on 3rd September and I have had no conformation (I have asked on several occasions) of what my role will be when I return to school.

    5. I had a very tricky start to my pregnancy and was signed off for 2 weeks due to low blood pressure and episodes of fainting. On my return, I requested an expectant mother’s risk assessment to be carried out. I also informed my HT that my GP had provided me with a ‘fit note’ highlighting some suggestions that will aid me during work, I suggested that this could inform the risk assessment. The risk assessment was completed 8 weeks after my request and non of the GP recommendations were taking into consideration.
    Has anyone had any similar experiences? As you can imagine I am at a loss on where to turn next as I feel that I have been treated very badly. I am not the type of person to cause a fuss and am not a trouble maker. However, I can’t help but feel that I have been completely miss-sold and lied to and that the year has put a halt to my career prospects.

    Thanks for any suggestions.
  2. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    My advice is quite simply
    Let the Union do the negotiating because
    Your main job is to look after yourself and that new aby and stressing aout this will help neither of you.

    You can't change what has happened, but your reactions and state of mind will affect how much you can enjoy this last part of your pregnancy and then the birth of that precious little baby.
  3. BioEm

    BioEm Occasional commenter

    I’d like to second this!
    agathamorse likes this.
  4. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    I agree.

    A comment on your point 4. I wouldn't expect the head to confirm your role when you return from ML before you have even started it. It will depend on the roles that need filling at the time you return.

    Teachers' contracts of employments generally say only that they are employed as a teacher, not a teacher of a specific year group or in a specific role. Heads can reply teachers as needed. As budgets are cut schools can end up not being to afford any teachers who are not assigned to teach a specific class.
  5. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    You've been sold short. Possibly this was not the intention - perhaps the school has had unexpected issues this year. Hopefully you are still in touch with those who gave you references for this post, as when you apply for new jobs, you'll need to explain this year as not being what you'd been led to expect, and draw on your previous experience to demonstrate your ability.

    They offered you permanent, so if they want rid of you then they would have to go down the redundancy route. They could do that, if the post is no more, but they would also be obliged to offer you suitable alternative work, which they are doing.

    Your union will advise on this, but I think that puts you in a relatively strong position, as you shouldn't be denied progression if it is their incompetence that means you haven't had any performance management.
    Depending on how long you are taking off, you are entitled to return to your existing role (except that what you were appointed to no longer exists, so that probably gets them out of that anyway), or to an equivalent role. There's probably not much point in pinning it down now, because things may change by the end of your maternity leave anyway. But you should assume that it may well not be what you want, and keep an eye on the job ads.
    It's a bit late for anything to be fixed with regard to this now, but you might want to mention it to your staff H&S rep, in the hope that they will get on the case of any future pregnant colleagues.

    It seems this move was a not a good one for you, but I don't think it's a career-stopper. Keep an eye out for other jobs that look more like what you want (although also consider whether you want to consider slightly different roles while you have a young family - eg part-time SENCO).

    If you do consider applying for new jobs for later in the year or September 2019, just bear in mind the enhanced maternity pay, if you're getting it. You need to return to your current employer for 13 weeks to keep it. Your timing is good for September, as you would be able to return at the start of the May half-term break and get that 13 weeks in before the end of August.
    agathamorse likes this.
  6. ajs12345

    ajs12345 New commenter

    Agree with much of the above. Hand this over to the union and they will do the digging for you. In the mean time, it might be a good idea (and quite cathartic I imagine) to gather all the written evidence you can: email correspondence, letters, even the original job ad if you can still get a hold of it. The more of this that you can find some sort of paper trail for, the more the union will be able to fight the case.
    agathamorse likes this.

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