1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. Hi Guest, welcome to the TES Community!

    Connect with like-minded education professionals and have your say on the issues that matter to you.

    Don't forget to look at the how to guide.

    Dismiss Notice

What consequence would you expect for intent to steal?

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by ktq78, Oct 7, 2019.

  1. ktq78

    ktq78 New commenter

    I'd be interested to see what your thoughts are about my current situation with a male, year 9 pupil. I'm female; not sure if that is relevant.

    Since taking over the small class in September, this pupil has been extremely disruptive (pretty much anything to avoid work). I've followed the behaviour policy to the letter, which normally includes him being parked with another teacher for 10 minutes before returning.

    Every lesson he seems to ramp up his efforts. Last week he tried to draw me into topics of discussion such as drug taking (skilfully avoided). He also stole the key to the ICT room which was on my desk. (Later recovered)

    Today, as I was focused on another pupil, he helped himself to opening my bag. Thankfully I lock my valuables away every morning. He also said, in earshot of other pupils, that he 'will get me fired' due to his false accusations of my 'Not helping pupils'. He also tried to rally another pupil into joining him.

    I immediately passed this on to SLT. The boy has admitted to opening and searching my bag but said he didn't take anything. I'm sure, if there had been something worthwhile, the story would have been different.

    I have made my position clear to SLT that I am concerned for my professional safety.

    What would you reasonably expect:
    a) as a consequence for the boy?
    b) the school to put in place (if anything) to ensure professional safety?

  2. Lalex123

    Lalex123 Established commenter

    This story is very familiar to me as I have heard this happen to many teachers including me. I have never known SLT to deal with it satisfactorily which I think is indicative of the types of schools I have worked in. I would expect SLT to:
    - Find another class for this student until a meeting is arranged with parents
    - Explain information to parents and make it clear that student will not be allowed back into lessons until he has apologised properly
    - Make it clear that anything else said that is inappropriate will have consequences (isolation/detention/parents called in)
  3. sooooexcited

    sooooexcited Established commenter

    Log everything as you have evidence of harrassment.
    Sit down with SLT and ask them how they will protect you from this child.
    Report their feedback to your union.
    Refuse to teach him while this is unresolved.
  4. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Mousetrap in your handbag? ;)

    Seriously I can't add anything to post #2, other than saying I'd make sure my Union is advised of this person, and I would let my HT know in writing that I am concerned for my own safety.
  5. madcatlady

    madcatlady Occasional commenter

    Agreed with the posters above.

    Do not have this student in your room. Until he is removed you cannot concentrate on the other students.

    You have done very well to avoid issues this far, give yourself a pat on the back.
  6. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    Way back when we caught a student doing this he was removed from the class. Parents were told.
    The child wailed "if my father hears, he'll hit me" to which the reply was "well you shouldn't have done it" with thoughts of "good".
    steely1 and agathamorse like this.
  7. phlogiston

    phlogiston Star commenter

    If the school has a community police link, this is the ideal opportunity for an interview to spell out the consequences of this sort of behaviour.
  8. gainly

    gainly Star commenter

    How things have changed. Now he'd probably say, "when my father hears, he'll hit you."
  9. install

    install Star commenter

    1 Refuse to teach unless there is another adult in the room

    2 Speak to your hod. Have the student change sets. But offer to accept another student to keep numbers equal

    3 If this is stressful - see GP. And if gp agrees take time out. See Union.
    JohnJCazorla and SundaeTrifle like this.
  10. scienceteachasghost

    scienceteachasghost Lead commenter

    If SLT are supportive they should throw the (metaphorical) book at this student. If they are not they will probably blame your lesson for not being engaging enough yo prevent such behaviour. One Hope's you work in the former
    A decent SLT will get the lad moved to another class.
    steely1 likes this.
  11. Ezioclone

    Ezioclone New commenter

    I think there’s been some really poor quality advice given here, such as ‘don’t let him in your classroom’, or refuse to teach him.
    They may well be good objectives, but you will be drastically overstepping your powers (and are likely to provoke a very negative, long-term relationship with your SLT) if you approach it like that.

    Unless you are extrmeley fortunate to have an SLT member that actually respects you and listens, your best (only) option by far is to raise a formal concern (asking for help from) your union, and asking them to pursue it on your behalf.
    It will not be resolved tomorrow, or the next day - so you must still allow the child in your class then - you will not be on your own, and it is far less likely to (albeit unfairly) damage your career at the school.

    It takes a bit of time, and paperwork to contact and formally work with your union but SLT usually respond far more seriously and professionally when they are involved, than when you attempt to raise an issue alone.

    Good luck in resolving it. It sounds awful and entirely unacceptable.
  12. sbkrobson

    sbkrobson Star commenter

    If somebody is trying to nick stuff from my bag I'm not going to defer to contrived and irrelevant rank and go all salutey about it just because I know my place!
    I'm going to refuse to allow that person near to me again because I have a modicum of self respect and responsibility for my stuff
    I'm intrigued that you have criticised advice from some very experienced people on here as poor,and yet at the same time you clearly believe that your managers are important enough to override basic self respect. Which is not true.They are important in running the school, not in undermining your basic rights or making you afraid to lodge a basic request with them.

    "Drastically overstepping your powers" because you are simply doing the most pragmatic thing you can to prevent theft from your handbag?!
    You'll go far.
    JohnJCazorla and steely1 like this.
  13. Lalex123

    Lalex123 Established commenter

    What if the child stops behaving poorly because he realises he’s on his last chance? If this takes a few weeks the head may say ‘all is resolved, we don’t need to do anything now’.

    What if the child gets worse and someone is hurt, accused of gross misconduct or whatever else he can concoct in his creative mind...
  14. lovejoy_antiques

    lovejoy_antiques Senior commenter

    What I'd reasonably expect to happen would be for this to be 'investigated' by SLT asking his friends for their take on events. If you're lucky and you are found to be not grossly over exaggerating the situation I would expect the child to be out for a day or so of X box at home (while you fulfill your obligation to send lots of work home for him not to do). Then I would expect him to be back in your class with you making every effort to build a positive relationship with him. Whatever happens he won't be going anywhere.

    Well that's what I'd reasonably expect to happen in a UK state school. What I think should happen is something else entirely.
    JohnJCazorla likes this.
  15. delenn

    delenn New commenter

    I had something similar when I was on supply and the SLT were great. THe boy in question was extremely agressive, threatened to get me sacked and called me a racist. I went straight to the HOD and said that I felt like walking out the door because of his behaviour. It was sorted straight away, parents came in and they were disgusted at his behaviour, I got a full apology and he was moved into another set. With the right SLT it can be dealt with. I would say that you are are not willing to have the boy back in your lesson until the situation is resolved and get your union involved. Also threaten to speak to the police if it's not resolved.
    FrankWolley likes this.
  16. Ezioclone

    Ezioclone New commenter

    All the bravado talk, and then this...

    Exactly. You can only reasonably make a request. And what if they say, continue teaching them whilst we investigate. Or what if they say they’ll sort it, and later that afternoon you hear it’s been ‘resolved’ and the student is to be back in your lessons? Is that an adequate outcome? Almost certainly not, I’d guess.

    If you simply, outright, ‘refuse to teach’ a student you can set yourself on a collision course with some/many SLT.

    My advice is based upon experience of working in many different schools, and for many SLT’s. Experience is very ‘narrow’ if you’ve worked for 20 years at a single school.

Share This Page