Can you tell me about this list.

(41 Posts)
BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 19:50:56

Just testing my name change worked before posting properly...

BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 19:57:07

Excellent grin


- teachers made to stay after school three nights a week, a total of three and a half hours - mandatory.
- members of the SMT asking other members of staff not to show observation comments to external mentors.
- teachers being made to fill in school evaluations under the presence of a member of the SMT and also asked to initial it.
- members of the SMTs family being employed without an interview process.
- new members of the team being shouted at, called names and made to cry on two occasions, by members of the SMT.

Can someone tell me something about this list?

Flisspaps Wed 06-Feb-13 20:08:32



BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 20:16:23

Not an academy, no.

The list doesn't stop there either, the explanations just get more in depth.

I'm new, and I have never worked in a school before. I'm stressed, I panic every time I see one of the SMT, I feel drained and under pressure all the time. I just wondered what other teachers thought!

Flisspaps Wed 06-Feb-13 20:41:15

I'm not a teacher (have worked in a school, have been a school governor and am married to a teacher though) - and it still sounds like a nightmare school.

ninah Wed 06-Feb-13 20:41:43

nothing shocks me about your list sad I wish it still did

noblegiraffe Wed 06-Feb-13 20:44:07

What's your union doing about it?

BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 20:46:44

This isn't part of the list, but it's just something that I'm wondering - are unscheduled observations allowed?

And are lesson plans (lesson broken down into intro, task, plenary, skills to be improved, list of resources, assessment opportunities) for every single lesson normal in other schools?

BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 20:48:03

Other members of staff have been advised tht, should they go to their union, the HT wouldn't have a leg to stand on. It's a very successful school, though, and jobs are in short supply.

My school is like that. It is in the contracts of new staff ( and probably ours once the 3yrs of adhering to pre-academy T&C) that we cannot discuss anything about --fight club--the academy to anyone outside of it.

Also the principals 2 dc ( both former pupils) have been employed here. 1 is the highest paid clerical officer, paid more than the exams officer. Her DD's bf is being trained on the job as a teacher despite not even having A levels. I despair. I am not surprised at all by your list.

Panzee Wed 06-Feb-13 20:51:26

Only students should plan like that.

Time to print a few of these out and stick them up:

AViewfromtheFridge Wed 06-Feb-13 20:52:52

Do you have a union rep? DEFINITELY get together with other members of the union and decide on a plan of action.

It sounds awful, and not what teaching should be at all.

Legally, they can't make you stay, nor submit lesson plans, and the shouting at shouldn't be tolerated in any profession.

Does your local authority have a whistle-blowing hotline you can ring?

TicTacSir Wed 06-Feb-13 20:52:55

Sorry but... meh.
Worked in a school like this for years and yes they do get away with it.
Not fair, but unfortunately it's not uncommon.
Sorry though.

GW297 Wed 06-Feb-13 20:55:24

Sounds like my old school! Update your CV and keep a look out for any good jobs coming up soon.

TicTacSir Wed 06-Feb-13 20:57:58

AViewFromTheFridge the thing is, staff are made to fear SMT so much they don't dare ring unions or local education authority, being told that they're beneath it all.
I don't want to go into my own experiences in a bullying school... it's a whole new thread.
OP - personal experience tells me you'll get more and more anxious and stressed. For your own sake, and career, move on. I wish I'd had the courage to

BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 21:11:15

It sounds a bit silly, but what with all the different family members, it's difficult to talk candidly to colleagues about it - even if you can see it going on in front of it.

The thing is. I stay till late anyway because I'm new and IMO it's just what I need to do ATM. That doesn't mean to say that five years down the line I couldn't leave at 3.45 a couple of days a week. But it's not allowed.

I haven't complained about the lesson plans because, coming straight out of training, I thought it was normal.

Already I'm having nightmares about school. I'm not sleeping properly, I developed a twitch in my eye this morning because of the constant feeling if being on edge and it hasn't stopped yet.

The sad thing is, I enjoy the actual teaching, I really do, but the whole experience has put me off. That's part of the reason I'm teaching - because if this is normal I don't think I can cope with another fifty years. I look at the older teachers and they rarely smile, no one talks to each other for fear of it getting back to someone it wasn't meant for.

BBQWrap Wed 06-Feb-13 21:11:54

<that's part of the reason I'm posting

AViewfromtheFridge Wed 06-Feb-13 21:12:41

I work in a school where there is a fairly militant union presence, so I can't really relate to the culture of fear. It's so wrong, though! Makes me really mad.

I'm sorry you're going through this, OP. Not all schools are like that!

Hassled Wed 06-Feb-13 21:14:18

If I were you I would find out which of your governors chairs the Staffing/Personnel committee (sometimes it's called something like Resources) and email him/her.

BBQWrap Fri 08-Feb-13 15:33:32

So... I'm pretty certain I'm going to look for something else over half term. Tesco, receptionist, whatever, and hope to god I can find something that starts soon.

I knew I should have trained as a nurse grin

Marlinspike Fri 08-Feb-13 15:40:28

Err - have you not seen the NHS report published this week op? Not sure nursing would be a better option!

My understanding of directed time is that it includes more that teaching time, and therefore it could be reasonable for staff to be directed to stay after the teaching day ends - do you have training sessions or meetings at these times? Do you also know that the family members weren't interviewed - and maybe the clerical role is graded higher than exams officer - do you know what it incorporates?

This said, the rest of your post sounds like it is an oppressive atmosphere, and not a pleasant place to work.

BBQWrap Fri 08-Feb-13 15:49:30

Ha, I know nurses are having a shocking time at the moment too grin

I know for a fact that at least one of them didn't have to go through the interview process.

I don't really have a problem with the hours that we are meant to stay because I find them useful. My main problem is the bullying and the rest of the oppressive culture. Individually, the majority of staff are lovely. There are just a few members of the SMT that basically have a reign of terror <slight drama queen>

GinAndSlimlinePlease Fri 08-Feb-13 16:01:50

My lovely DHis having similar problems. It really sucks.

The HT treats him like a child who has forgotten to do all their homework, regardless of whether the children are making any progress.

And yes, I'm biased, but I have managed plenty of poor performers in my time, and I would never ask for their meeting plans in advance and then annotated after etc, rather than focus on outcomes....

Sorry you're in this shitty place OP. I hope things improve/you find a better job.

cardibach Sun 10-Feb-13 17:42:40

Unsurprising but unreasonable.
If I were to list all the similar things at my school (also not Academy) I would completely out myself, but I will say that 3 out of 6 senior leadership positions are held by relatives of the Head.
I don;t want to write more as I am currently being bullied and hounded by the Head despite good/excellent results at both GCSE and A Level. I need a new job.

mousebacon Sun 10-Feb-13 20:13:21

Please don't let your school make you leave the profession altogether. Seriously, get your cv and covering letter sorted and find a new school. I've worked in three in the last ten years and they have all been very different in terms of workload/ethos/nutcase heads.

Good luck.

Haveacrumpet Mon 11-Feb-13 02:31:19

Find a new school. I've worked in a horrible environment like that before, and leaving was the best thing I did. No school I've worked in is perfect. It's Sunday night where I am, and I have that nervous feeling in my stomach, despite the fact that I like my school. I think it's because I've got an unannounced observation on the horizon - sigh. It never ends... But some schools are better than others, so just hang in there if you can, apply for all the jobs available, and just remember it's the school you don't like, not the teaching.

Don't know if this is just me, but ever since the recession hit, it feels like schools think it's ok to make things tougher on teachers because of the 'we should just be lucky to have a job in the first place' mentality. hmm

This list is unreasonable. You can only be obs twice a year. Also you only have to attend 1 after school meeting a week. These are the legal requirements of the work load agreement. Speak to the union.

Lucycat Fri 22-Feb-13 11:22:49

nothingbyhalves is completely right you cannot be made to stay after school for 3 nights a week - are they paying you? You can contact your Union from home and speak to them.

We are a bolshy lot too in terms of our rights - grin

Shall we help you form an escape committee?

Feenie Fri 22-Feb-13 11:27:49

You can only be obs twice a year. Also you only have to attend 1 after school meeting a week. These are the legal requirements of the work load agreement.

Not true any more, I'm afraid - and as I understand it the unions agreed to that.

SmileAndPeopleSmileWithYou Fri 22-Feb-13 11:43:17

I thought the unions agreed to a compromise with the "action short of strike action" the NUT had?

After reading this I am clinging onto my job!

We are only observed 3 times per year.
We stay once per week for staff meeting (anywhere between 1 - 1.5 hours depending on the agenda).
We hand in Lit and Num weekly planning (evaluated) on a Mon for the previous week.
We hand in subject books at different times to the subject leaders to be moderated.
We can leave whenever we like as long as the children have gone and we get things done (some people work better at home).
We leave school for PPA time (due to lack of space in school to work).
All changes to the school policies/practice are discussed and agreed with teaching staff. Our SMT are very good at what they do and are always reasonable and supportive.

There are many good schools with very good Heads, who have common sense. If you love teaching then please try to find a good school, the profession needs passionate teachers to stay.

Feenie Fri 22-Feb-13 11:49:55

*Instruction 2: Members should not participate in any form of
management-led classroom observation in any school which refuses to
operate a policy of a limit of a total of three observations for all
purposes within a total time of up to three hours per year.*

You're right, there this ^ in the workload agreement - that would be only for NUT and NASUWT members working to rule though.

The NUT didn't sign up to the workload agreement at all because it included non-teaching staff taking whole classes, and the whole thing was dropped in Sept 2012 anyway. But the advice on 3 observations/3 hours a year is much the same.

In my school we agreed to not more that 3 hours, meaning that we may have more observations but they would rarely add up to an hour each.

Lucycat Fri 22-Feb-13 16:34:59

and as for the extra meetings - the NASUWT say this in their action short of strike.

Instruction 10: Members are instructed not to attend any meetings outside school session times which are not within directed time and where there is no published directed time calendar for the academic year which has been agreed with the NASUWT

Feenie Fri 22-Feb-13 16:52:40

But look at the NAHT's oh-so-helpful advice to its members on that issue:

*There is no requirement that a school shall only hold one after school meeting per week nor that any such meeting shall be limited to a 1 hour duration.
Any refusal to attend a meeting or activity, because it was not on the school calendar, may constitute a breach of contract.*


TwllBach Fri 22-Feb-13 17:10:32

Can I ask, do all the rules and regulations apply only to state schools? What if they are independent or a foundation school?

Feenie Fri 22-Feb-13 17:12:55

They can do what they like - as can academies.

Startail Fri 22-Feb-13 17:27:51

I'm sure some SLTs and HTs are awful by nature, but please remember others are breathing down your necks because Ofsted is breathing down theirs.

Feenie Fri 22-Feb-13 18:02:40

That is not an excuse for bullying.

missmapp Fri 22-Feb-13 18:07:44

This sounds like our school;

we are observed 6 times a year, if the result is not good or better, you are re-obsreved until it is.
One of our performance mang targets is that 5 out of 6 obs must be good or better.
we have two meetings a week at least.
books/plans taken in weekly.
regular learning walks with no notice.

This has all come about in the last few years,

it is good to hear, there are some normal schools out there.

Loshad Sat 23-Feb-13 21:05:59

jeepers chaps, honestly TES has to be your new friend, there are plenty of "nice" normal schools out there.

Startail Sun 24-Feb-13 00:34:01

Absolutely not an excuse for bullying, but certainly a reason why some SLTs are wandering the corridors and sticking their noses into classrooms more than they once did.

It's their heads on the block if Ofsted make mountains out of mole hills as sadly they do.

Phineyj Sun 24-Feb-13 17:52:50

I'm sure you can find a better school. Like that Guardian (?) ad says 'Become the most admired person in your department: leave.' This sounds awful and I am shock at the detailed lesson plans for every lesson thing -- how on earth could anyone do that? I have only ever done that for observed lessons and to be honest I find lessons go better when I don't plan in that level of detail -- it leaves a bit of space to respond to the students' needs on that particular day and the adrenalin makes me try harder

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