Governors have suddenly announced Headteacher's early retirement.

(15 Posts)
mumof32015 Sat 19-Sep-20 19:53:48

I have been a parent at this school for 7 years and will be for the next 7. I have had my ups and downs with the school over the years, but overall my children have been very happy there. They usually have 7 individual classes but over the years, the intake has got considerably smaller. I think this year saw the smallest intake of 9, this has meant years have started to be combined. I know there has been a number of families who have taken their children out of the school blaming the headteacher, but I have never really found out the reasons why. Anyway out of no where on Friday the head governor sent us a letter saying the headteacher is taking early retirement. I get the impression that he is possibly being pushed into leaving, with the fact the school has lost popularity. I am now really stressed about who will be taking over. Has anyone been in this situation before?

OP’s posts: |
Guymere Sat 19-Sep-20 21:57:22

Lots of schools won’t agree to early retirement with a full pension entitlement where they make up the years of pension payments not earned because it’s too expensive. In my LA the school would have to pay for this.

However Heads can negotiate their exit deal. It’s not unusual for a Head to go somewhere else before 60. Certainly before 65! They go and work for MATs, as advisers and consultants. Loads do it! And they work for Ofsted. I really wouldn’t worry about the Head.

The school obviously has a problem recruiting and retaining children. Have you never thought what might be causing that other than muttering about the head? It’s stressful managing a declining school because the funds decrease and it’s hard letting go of staff and seeing the ship sink. Sometimes it’s better to try and get a new dynamic Head to try and get numbers, and money, up again.

The Governors are responsible for the strategic vision of the school. In your case it might be saving it from closure! So perhaps a new Head will get things going in the right direction. More and more classes will be amalgamated and less and less staff will be employed unless they can turn it around. I don’t think I’d be fearful but my DC probably wouldn’t still be there!

GolfForBrains Sat 19-Sep-20 22:01:39

Is the head leaving with immediate effect, or is this an announcement with a date in the future on it? If it's a date of Easter or later, they have time to run a recruitment process with the hope of getting someone in from then.

If it is with immediate effect - well, the deputy head may be stepping up but depending on how experienced they are and for how long they need cover, there may also be conversations going on about getting in a locum head, or asking another headteacher to be Executive headteacher responsible for both schools with the deputy head perhaps getting a new title of head of school (this could be a temporary or a permanent arrangement). A school with a small number of pupils may feel that a full-time head is more than they can afford.

Either way, you can be sure that the governors and your LA or MAT are having a lot of discussion about what is best.

Ariela Sat 19-Sep-20 22:02:36

IME schools come and go in cycles, the school that was most popular 7 years ago won't be most popular today but could be back in top slot by 7 years time.

Guymere Sat 19-Sep-20 22:16:46

Heads have to give 1 terms notice Doug could be at the end of this term. That’s still time to recruit for Jan or after Easter. So not much time without a head if they can recruit.

Guymere Sat 19-Sep-20 22:17:23

Doug!!! So it could be at the end of this term.

mumof32015 Sat 19-Sep-20 22:41:10

@GolfForBrains they said that he would continue working there until they have appointed a new head. They haven't given a date. We don't have a deputy anymore, she left a few years ago.

OP’s posts: |

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BlueCowWonders Sat 19-Sep-20 23:08:49

Your thread title is strange- how would you like the announcement to have been made? What's 'sudden' about it? You've been told what's happening -did you expect some early warning or gossip first?hmm

Guymere Sat 19-Sep-20 23:09:12

If they appoint a deputy (From another school) as new head, they give 1/2 terms notice. So that could be a January start. If they get an existing Head, they could start after Easter. They need to crack on with advertising, shortlisting, interviewing etc. Finding a great Head isn’t easy but as this Head isn’t leaving immediately, they have a chance to find someone good without undue pressure.

It doesn’t sound as if he’s forced out if there’s no leaving date. There would be if it was an acrimonious divorce!

BackforGood Sat 19-Sep-20 23:31:19

What @BlueCowWonders said. Not really sure what you are concerned about. People leave jobs all the time. Why were you expecting prior warning, of what is already a long notice period ? confused

ItsGoingTibiaK Sat 19-Sep-20 23:35:48

Surely the first time you hear of something, it's always "sudden" and "out of the blue"?

Passtherioja Sat 19-Sep-20 23:42:31

Teachers can retire from 55 on a reduced pension, and an early retirement could be sooner than that if they decide to do supply or consultancy. I doubt here's much to worry about here, if there was a problem they'd just be going at Christmas.

Passtherioja Sat 19-Sep-20 23:54:26

@Guymere The deadline for head teachers resigning to leave at the end of the Autumn term is 20th September this year -there is no difference that depends upon who has been appointed, although the governing body can release any member of staff from their contract early if requested.

Also, Headteacher don't negotiate their exit deals-we pay into the teachers pension and it's governed by terms and conditions-certainly state school heads don't negotiate anything, it's all in the formula.

This is a simple situation that the head has resigned by the deadline to go at Christmas, the advert will go out so they need to tell parents but the vaguest re: date they'll leave is because they'll have agreed to stay on longer if the school doesn't appoint-which makes sense if there's no deputy to act up for a term.

ineedaholidaynow Sun 20-Sep-20 00:00:13

What with the stress of trying to run a school during a pandemic and falling roll and managing the ever declining budget, they have probably had enough. Is there another small school nearby so an Exec Head could be a possibility, so sharing a HT between them? That will save costs

Guymere Sun 20-Sep-20 07:34:22

Yes I said 1 terms notice is required from Heads. So an announcement now could be for the end of this term. Some Heads do give 2 terms notice because they want to. Even a year in some cases.

Heads can very much negotiate the manner of their leaving if they have been off sick or their leadership has been disastrous and the GB proves they are not capable. State Heads do leave after negotiation occasionally. Schools have certainly been known to make payments into the pension scheme in the past to facilitate early retirement on a better pension deal. However, as I said, it’s down to each school now and isn’t normally done. However I guess you have not been in difficulties with your job and required to leave.

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