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Reality of being a parent And a teacher - School concerts etc

(28 Posts)
tjah04 Thu 06-Dec-12 08:49:13

I just wondered how many of you had understanding Heads of School who allowed time off to see Xmas plays and realistically how often you can expect them to allow this a year?

HedgeHogGroup Wed 20-Feb-13 21:30:06

I'm a HT myself and have 2 DC (7 & 3) I always insist that staff go to these things as I want to go myself (my 3yo is in my school nursery pt).
The staff in my school do not take the piss and I would be really sad if they didn't feel they could ask me.
Some other HTs think I'm a soft-touch but all my staff are 'good' or 'outstanding' and I think they deserve my support smile
I've worked for both types of HT - those who bend over backwards to let you go and those who point-blank refuse and I have to say... a little bit of goodwill goes a long way!

BeattyBeatty Sat 16-Feb-13 21:07:14

Goodness! I must be very very lucky! My ht is lovely and has always let me go to all! However I am part time so I rarely need the time as all 'performances' seem to take place at end of the week!
He is a very good head though and allows everyone time out assemblies etc. Even very understanding when dcs ill and I have to look after them.
I do firmly believe that he recognises if you treat your staff well... You get it back in willingness iykwim! I have never taken the mick... And if he needs me to be flexible I'll always try to accommodate!
I'm leaving in July! So I'll make sure he knows how much I've appreciated it! grin

MushroomSoup Thu 14-Feb-13 20:58:07

I'm a primary HT. I insist my staff go. I'll cover myself, if necessary!

weblette Sun 10-Feb-13 16:03:48

I have 4dcs and am currently working as a 1-1 TA to get experience before doing teacher training in a couple of years time. The pick-up logistics can be horrific but I have very good friends who will step in if needed and I make a lot of cakes to say thanks.

From what I've seen at our school the head is incredibly flexible, as are the other members of staff so people move their PPA or do extra hours to cover time out of school. Works well for everyone.

LindyHemming Sun 10-Feb-13 15:49:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Hulababy Thu 07-Feb-13 16:59:26

It depends on the HT in my experience.

I work in an infant school (though not as a teacher these days) and our HT allows staff to go to their own children's concerts, etc. We arrange cover often between ourselves where we can or rearrange PPA time.

It makes sense. We expect parents to come and watch our assemblies and concerts, so the HT has to allow her staff to do the same for their children too. In this way our HT is understanding and flexible - maybe as it is primary it is more likely to be flexible???

HanneHolm Thu 07-Feb-13 16:48:27

Oh ours does a rota!

FeltOverlooked Wed 06-Feb-13 20:39:19

At our school we seem to manage mostly to cover for each other BUT we nearly all have children at schools which are very, very close. e.g. I watched my son's assembly and was still at work by 9:30 am.

deleted203 Fri 25-Jan-13 23:41:23

It's getting harder, I think. Years ago it was fairly easy (DD1 is 21 this year). You grovelled to a couple of colleages who had a free period, 'cover my Y9 class P5 and Y10 P6 and I'll do the same for you one day'. And then you swanned off to the nativity play. Heads were fairly relaxed (in my experience) that as long as you'd got someone to cover your classes then it was ok. Nowadays (DS2 is 7) it's much harder. My school are very good actually and I have gone to nativity with their blessing and they've put cover staff in. I think the main difference in 15 years or so is that I don't think we necessarily ran it by HT. Just covered for each other fairly willingly and no one seemed to notice/care particularly. With the 'no cover' now I don't think I would dare ask a colleague to give up a free period.

Tincletoes Fri 25-Jan-13 23:41:19

My DH has never missed a nativity in 5 years - I suspect sports days or open afternoons would be a harder call, but if he was desperate then think it would almost always be ok

In saying that, he is rarely ill, I am PT and also have the kind of job where 9/10 I could make up my hours if eg I need to be at home with the children if they are ill, so genuinely in the last 12 years of teaching he has been off work literally for 1 day. So I guess he gets a bit of slack if he does want to go to something.

Wolfiefan Fri 25-Jan-13 23:37:13


squirral Fri 25-Jan-13 23:35:05

Rarely, completely depends on mood of head from day to day and if he does agree it's always extremely reluctantly.
On my son's 1st day at school (ever) I dropped him at the breakfast club and rushed off to school - I shall always regret not being able to take him to the classroom.

TheHappyCamper Sun 23-Dec-12 19:50:00

My head was so nice when I very nervously asked if I could have an hour off for dd's nativity. She is firmly of the opinion that if we want women in the workplace we sometimes need to be abit flexible. She actually covered my lesson herself. I offered her a cover back but she declined.

I would happily cover a colleague for similar events. These are the sort of things that money can't buy and when we look back in 10 years or so we will be so glad we all helped eachother. Makes for a happier school I think.

cardibach Sun 23-Dec-12 19:31:06

Maureen I want to work in your school. I assume from your post that those staff are still being paid? I can't even get paid time off to take my DD to hospital appointments. DSis, in the Probation Service, can have paid time to take our parents!
I used to get time for concerts when we had a different Head. I wouldn't ask now, but luckily my DD goes to the Secondary School I work in!

TheFallenMadonna Sun 09-Dec-12 15:28:32

It's the holidays that make it work. You cannot overstate the huge benefit of having (mostly) the same holidays as your DC.

charllie Sun 09-Dec-12 15:27:02

I think it does depend on the head teacher. Where I work, we're very lucky and she would try to allow time where possible.

Littlefish Sun 09-Dec-12 15:24:36

I've never been. I work 4 days and just have to hope that some of the things like sports day, nativity, class assemblies etc. occasionally fall on my day off.

tjah04 Sun 09-Dec-12 15:20:54

Thank you for your replies everyone. It has somewhat helped me make up my mind.

I am in the situation where I run a business and have 4 children. I have just finshed my degree and have always wanted to be a teacher but have been weighing up the odds between raising 4 children and being a teacher.

TheFallenMadonna Sat 08-Dec-12 22:32:44

Nope. Not allowed. DH goes.

EvilTwins Sat 08-Dec-12 22:29:45

I can go as long as there are no cover implications. Luckily DTD's school does 4 performances of the Xmas play and one corresponds with a free period. I have never been to sports day or harvest festival though hmm

AViewfromtheFridge Sat 08-Dec-12 20:12:35

We have an informal arrangement whereby we say we don't mind doing a couple of "favour covers" - perhaps half an hour, once a term, and in return we can take time off for things like plays or weddings.

incogneetow Thu 06-Dec-12 18:13:11

At our school (secondary) they allow it, but only once a year - so you can't do sports day and the nativity for example. You are also encouraged to sort out your own cover if at all possible, AND you're expected to volunteer to cover for someone else in a similar circumstance..

MaureenMLove Thu 06-Dec-12 17:57:51

I am in charge of cover in my school and I will always try to accommodate. It's very, very rare that I say it's impossible. However, it does work both ways. I do hope that if I need some help covering a class at the last minute through sudden sickness, that those that I have helped out, will step up.

Quite a lot of the time though, our teachers tend to sort it out within the department themselves. Suppose it must be more difficult in a primary school though.

You deserve to see your lo's, just as much as everyone else, regardless of the job you've got.

Pozzled Thu 06-Dec-12 17:52:34

I work PT so I can sometimes shuffle my hours a bit. I'm very excited that I can go this year (DD1 in Reception) but it's because I'm not teaching at the time, so no cover needed. Otherwise I would offer to miss my PPA timr for the week, SMT will usually accomodate that if they can.

TheNebulousBoojum Thu 06-Dec-12 17:48:38

Never, and my baby is 18 now.

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