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Why are some HTs bullies?

Discussion in 'Primary' started by celago22, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I've just finished at a school where I was bullied all year persistently by the inexperienced HT. It was a truly horrific experience. Nearly 30 members of staff left over the course of the academic year. Why are some HTs nasty? What do they hope to achieve? Is this a widespread issue?
    ATfan and lardylegs like this.
  2. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    Definitely a widespread issue. I’m only awake now (3am) because I woke up angry about the headteacher of a school I have just left.

    As people will have noticed how you/others have been treated, just keep saying “how you treat people is a reflection on you” and be very pleasant.

    I’ve found that people put up with weak leadership and bullying because they want a job- it’s too easy to get rid of a teacher and much harder to get rid of a head.

    I don’t think they hope to achieve anything, the “power” goes to their heads.

    I have just gone through a phase of finding karma- the bully heads and the incompetent ones are getting RI!

    The school I have just left will be very lucky if that’s all they get.
  3. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

    Sometimes these people have literally no clue as to the consequences of their actions and words on others. Many of these people do not have enough experience of the teaching and/or being in the middle management and lack sufficient imagination to understand how impossible their requests are.

    This is a warning signal but it could happen to any head. The signal has noone with oversight to check up on it.

    You should all ask for exit interviews. If 30 people all condemn the head as bully that should be pretty damning evidence against the HT.

    Certain types of job attract psychopaths. Positions of power and influence draw them like magnets. It is far more likely than normal for your a HT picked at random to be a psychopath than a dustbinman picked at random.

    There are many reasons why headteachers bully.
    Sometimes they do it simply because they can; like small boys pulling the wings of insect.
    Sometimes because they want you leave so that they can appoint someone else or simply get rid of your job.
    Sometimes because they have no empathy.
    This is by no means an exhaustive list.

    A sensible question. Sometimes I don't think they every think that far ahead. For some it is about staying in charge. Insipid leaders fear competency even when it is not a threat to them.

    For example I have worked at a school where the HT came to where I was on break duty asked a student where I was, turned away from me and there the confused child was pointing. (he had to turn more than 180 degrees to avoid looking at me. My inner alarm bells began ringing and I just knew what he was going to do next. I went to the security recording room and asked the caretake to watch the security camera footage and asked for a copy of it. The HT called me into his office and accused me of not being on duty. I called him a liar to his face. I also told him I already had watched the footage with the caretaker and had a copy of it. To this day, I have no idea what on earth he imagined would happen when he called me into hjs office. Did he expect me to agree with him?

    You are far far from alone. Is it widespread, probably. Not every HT is nutter. Not every HT is bully. But a HT has to manage some difficult people and so, as someone was said to me, they tend to a inner have shark that comes outs in a rather jaws-esque fashion when required.
    Jesmond12 and Teacher_abc123 like this.
  4. afterdark

    afterdark Lead commenter

  5. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I think some HTs will continue to get away with it. :(
    DexterDexter likes this.
  6. DexterDexter

    DexterDexter Occasional commenter

    Pick one that you fancy if you’re not sure about a head teacher leading their school to be “RI”. Although SM and SW would suit some better.
  7. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Why is anyone a bully? Usually insecurity.
    Has term finished for you? If so, move on and enjoy the next school.
    The best revenge against a bully is to go on an enjoy life, while being successful, elsewhere.
  8. ATfan

    ATfan Star commenter

    You've already given a possible reason in your case. @afterdark and other posters on this thread have identified others. I recommend the excellent book: Bully in sight by the late great Tim Field for a more detailed answer on this subject. I found it to be very informative when I was bullied in previous workplaces. You have my sympathy and hope that you get treated with far more respect in your new workplace! :)
  9. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I think moving on is the best thing to do. It sickens me that HTs get away with bullying. Let them carry on bullying and hopefully they will have an nctl hearing against them one day.
    ATfan likes this.
  10. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    Quite concerned to read some of the comments on this thread and it’s alarming that nearly 30 members of staff have left over the academic year, although I must ask- has the CoG launched an investigation as to why so many staff are leaving? In every school you do get a couple of staff leave each year, it’s the norm, but 30! Something must be going on!
    Teacher_abc123 likes this.
  11. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    Yep, over the course of the year 30 teachers have left. One class has had 4 different teachers. The governors have not investigated, no-one was offered an exit interview and so much is wrong.
  12. thejudgesscoresarein

    thejudgesscoresarein Occasional commenter

    This is crazy! Has the HT said anything? If it was me, I would be VERY curious to understand what is going on but then I do not bully my staff.
    I’m very surprised that the governing body haven’t investigated the ‘exodus’ that is happening.
    Jesmond12 likes this.
  13. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    How big is the school?
  14. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    I am glad you do not bully your staff. It is a truly awful thing to go through especially when it is daily, persistent and targeted. I am sure the HT has had to communicate to the governors how many teachers have left but I have a feeling they have lied about the reasons for leaving, hence why I did not give a reason on my resignation letter. However, hopefully the governors will know that we were not offered an exit interview, and they will piece two and two together. Not much I can do now about the bully HT, other than move on and enjoy my new school. Hopefully others in the same boat will do the same.
  15. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    2 form entry, about 400 chn, 50 members of staff (teachimg and lsa).
  16. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Did you decide against the grievance?

    This makes 14 classes.
    If only one class has had 4 different teachers, then presumably many others have had three or almost all the others have had two.

    It's easy for a head to talk about the difficulty in recruiting a high calibre of applicant, especially mid year. The governors are unlikely to disagree or they would need to think about getting rid of the head, which is incredibly difficult. I'd imagine a fair few of the governors will resign as well.
  17. celago22

    celago22 Established commenter

    There are 17 classes. I only gave approximate values. Yes, I was bullied out of grievance if I wanted to secure my new job. Can't go into specific details on here but was basically blackmailed into dropping it. In the end, it worked in my favour as I didn't have the stress of it but showed that I was able to stand up to a degree of the bullying.

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