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Would you recruit a teacher with mental health issues?

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by felicity5183, Oct 21, 2017.

  1. Imp72

    Imp72 New commenter

    I am a HT with an anxiety disorder, currently on medication and also coping day to day with a rare blood disorder. Each case is totally different and my condition in no way affects my role or the children/adults around me. It makes me more sympathetic and understanding than I would otherwise be. Nobody knows about it at all at work but i have been through occ health.In fact I find that work is very much my saviour and keeps my mind focussed.
  2. catbefriender

    catbefriender Lead commenter

    Imp72, I salute you!

    I know a brilliant DH who had all the above and was a brilliant Science and Maths teacher and she said much of the same thing, i.e. teaching helped her focus, take her mind off things.

    The most important thing to recognise is that everyone is an individual and knowing a person's disability in no way, shape or form tells you anything about how they may or may not be able to cope. It's all about how the person takes care of themselves.
    Bumptious and lizziescat like this.
  3. Hi,

    would you be interested in talking about this publicly? I'm putting together a podcast talking about education and mental health. Please get in touch. daniel.gordon@bbc.co.uk Thank you.
  4. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Nopes, sorry.
    Lilysowner, sooooexcited and jarndyce like this.
  5. Piscean1

    Piscean1 Senior commenter

    It scares me that this question has been asked.

    I have anxiety and depression. I will probably be on medication for life. I consider it to be more of a chronic condition and, as long as I take my meds, and with minor adjustments at work during blue phases, I cope very well. I had a grand total of 2 days off and actually have a better attendance record than most in my school.
  6. lizziescat

    lizziescat Star commenter

    I knew someone who worked in a high pressure (media) environment. She mentioned that she had found out that someone working for her suffered from bipolar disorder.
    “But you’d never know it. She’s lovely and works really well in all aspects.
    But if I’d known I wouldn’t have employed her”

    Yes, there still a long way to go.

    I wonder at the response to a thread on, ‘Would you recruit a teacher with diabetes ?’**

    **substitute a variety of illnesses , conditions, social circumstances etc
    Bumptious, Lalad, Piscean1 and 2 others like this.
  7. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    My son (not a teacher) disclosed his bipolar illness to a prospective employer and was still given the job. Three weeks in, he started displaying symptoms of a bipolar high, probably triggered by the stress of starting a new job. His employers were brilliant - called him in for a meeting, asked if there was anything they could do to help, allocated him a mentor and offered to rearrange his work pattern to reduce the impact on his mental health.

    Perhaps it is better to take on the person who declares, has insight into and is in control of their mental health than the one who keeps it hidden.
  8. strawbs

    strawbs Established commenter

  9. Kentishman66

    Kentishman66 New commenter

    I’ve been offered a job subject to background checks and references which include health and medical references. With a long history of very well managed anxiety and depression, I don’t know if This would mean new employer is allowed to withdraw job offer in light of this or not. I’ve never hidden it up to now and have had one day off in the last year. Does anyone know if my offer can be withdrawn when they see my medical history? Or is a chronic condition like this a “protected” status?
  10. cornflake

    cornflake Senior commenter

    Your job shouldn't be withdrawn. You may find you are protected under the Equalities Act.
    I am.

    On a recent HQ, it highlighted that the person we'd appointed was at high risk of stress and depression. It just meant I was hyper-vigilant about how they presented around the place; so I could say something if I thought they were suffering. Fortunately, they have been fine.
    TBH, if everyone who had A&D was refused a job, the profession would be in even more of a crisis than it is now.... (quite apart from it being wrong to do so)
    Lilysowner likes this.

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