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Year group for next year (primary)..feels unfair

(14 Posts)
TortoiseOrtoise Thu 14-May-15 20:53:38

I have been teaching Y6 (first year teacher) and have been told through a less senior member of SMT, who feels sorry for me and felt I should be pre-warned, that I will be there again next year. I was given a preference form and requested Key Stage 1. I have placement experience down there which I loved and my school are aware I am not KS2 trained only.
I understand I have to fit where I'm needed, a consolidation year is good, it will be easier doing a second year there and I like the phase leader.
However, I have previously raised concerns about a teacher who class shares (kind of team teaching) in year 6 who I have been paired with all year. She in effect is a bully and very undermining and rude. When I raised the concerns I was shot down by SMT and decided for a peaceful life to just get through and try to keep a low profile.
It looks like I will be doing this team teaching again and am really dreading it. I feel very upset they had no intention of telling me I wouldn't be getting a preference or even praising (for once) that I did a good job with Y6 and they want me to do it again.

Know there is no real solution, I will probably bring up with my phase lead that I'd rather not team teach with the bully but I know in reality its probably set in stone.
I will certainly be resigning in a years time, I can't now as too late to apply elsewhere and need to have certainty of a job financially.

toomuchicecream Thu 14-May-15 21:24:35

There's nothing to stop you changing jobs at Christmas or Easter. In fact, I've never changed jobs in the summer - it's always happened differently. I quite like swapping part way through the year....

TortoiseOrtoise Thu 14-May-15 21:48:57

Next year is my NQT year, this current year was school-based training.. So pretty sure I need to complete the full year for ease.
I can survive a year but it will be barely bearable... I feel like I have few rights and little respect at my school. It is all very unprofessional then as soon as any staff member brings up a worry or issue they are quickly told they are being unprofessional. Not nice but I can get through the year. Hoping for advise on how to breech not being around this 'team teacher' who provides extra support to Y6?

MaraThonbar Thu 14-May-15 22:20:59

Presumably the team-teaching arrangement was to provide support for you while you trained? If be surprised if the school could afford to keep two teachers in there once you have qualified. I think you need to seek clarification on the plan for next year.

TortoiseOrtoise Thu 14-May-15 22:31:17

The support is Y6 specific and always there but was obviously more vital as I was being trained. There is no where else for her to go so I assume she'll be in at least 50% of the time and will be my nqt mentor.

Anyone who did school-based training know how easy it is to swap mentors or request someone else?
I will seek clarification but don;t know if it is too early and how to do it without causing fireworks as everything is blown up at my school by over-reactive bulldozing SMT...even the simplest question turns into criticism.. Any advice?!

MaraThonbar Thu 14-May-15 22:44:05

I've run school-based ITT for a few years now and always avoid wherever possible a trainee having the same mentor in their training and NQT years. Even if the relationship is excellent, I think it's important to be exposed to different approaches early in your career. You could take this approach. It's fairly straightforward in a secondary school but it's often more difficult in a primary school where there are fewer staff.

Are you on SD? Do you have a tutor who could broach the subject with the HT?

TortoiseOrtoise Fri 15-May-15 22:37:48

I will ask my university support mentor for advice. I agree a change is good - however well two people get on a year of intense mentoring is always going to be long enough. Either they are stepping on one another's toes by the end or are too pally and a change of perspective would help stimulate more growth.
It is difficult while she can be really nasty out of a lesson/mentoring time context we can get on. I just feel a move away from her is vital as it does make me miserable.

Anyone with Y6 specific advice? My whole experience has been strange being in Y6 apart from my Year 2 placement which was heavenly!!

RedJeans Sat 16-May-15 11:17:32

Are you TF? I'm in the same situation if so, do not get along with my mentor at all and it was announced the other day that she will be staying on at the school next year especially to be my NQT mentor sad so would be good to hear any more advise about how to tactfully request that I have someone else!!

MaraThonbar Sat 16-May-15 11:52:11

RedJeans is your LDO any good, and does s/he have any relationship with the HT? That would be a good first port of call. Failing that, have a chat with your professional tutor. You aren't the first person to have this problem! Are you primary too?

Janek Sat 16-May-15 12:41:24

I would speak to your union. They will have plenty of experience of dealing with things like this. There should be a phone number on the back of your membership card.

Also, are you obliged to stay in September? I know the deadline is coming up for leaving in time to start a job in September, but are you bound by that deadline? What does your contract say? Again, your union can help you.

TortoiseOrtoise Sat 16-May-15 13:02:56

RedJeans and maraThonbar I will PM you both as you seem to have hit the nail on the head! Thanks all.

RedJeans Sat 16-May-15 15:06:00

LDO is okay, but can't really imagine her having a productive chat with the head, she's not particularly strong willed if you see what I mean! Professional tutor could have more of an impact though, so maybe I'll see what she thinks. Thank you! Sorry for hijacking a bit Tortoise!

AsBrightAsAJewel Sat 16-May-15 16:10:12

If you are currently on a placement or a training contract with the school you are, in effect, starting as a new teacher in September. Although you have worked in the school this year you have not been a qualified teacher. This, sadly for you, does not really place you in a strong position for asking to teach a specific year group.

The Headteacher / SLT need to thing about the big picture when deciding where to place all the teachers in the school, starting by looking at the skill-set they have seen and the needs of the children. As a member of SLT we get requests each year from lots of staff and it is a jigsaw to put it all together. We get requests from teachers and teaching assistants who want to work in a year we do not feel they have the best skill-set for, or for year groups they perceive to be an easier ride. We want staff to be happy, but our core purpose is what is best for the children.

Take it as a complement - Year 6 is tough and a very important year group, so the school must think highly of you to place you there. I also think you need to clarify where the other teacher will be working. You are the qualified teacher now, so don't need another teacher to supervise / team with you. No school I know can afford two teachers for one class, with budgets being constantly slashed. It might be the other teacher is working elsewhere. I can understand you are upset, but no one, experienced or not, can expect to be given a preference - it is just that a request not an expectation. I've taught for decades and rarely been given any of the three year groups I listed on preference. Is this more a concern that the SLT haven't praised you enough during your placement?

TortoiseOrtoise Sat 16-May-15 22:12:58

Thanks AsBright for a reassuring and honest point of view.

I understand preferences are simply that, I just felt that every other staff member's preference has been honored and even if I could not be put where I asked, I could have been politely spoken to and told 'sorry we can't fit you in where you asked but we want you to keep up your good work in year 6'. I have barely been praised - more often the opposite. Although more recently I have felt more valued but very much heavily supervised and I feel they are leaving me in 6 because it is an excuse for this supervision to continue.
It has been the toughest year of my life (I know that is true of most teacher's first/training year) but I have felt like they are quick to rip me apart then tell me to get on with it and very slow to give the smallest praise.
My mentor has been assigned her usual role of Year 6 float/team teacher so it is a case of arguing that I need the space to develop. They will argue it is usual practice for her to support in Y6.
I have kept my personal life quiet but in reality I'm battling balancing a child, work, essays and DP does not have a job which complements mine well in terms of hours/workload. I know it was my choice to teach and I do not regret it but I do feel schools could be a bit more confidence building in staff. I guess it is just welcome to the crazy, difficult world of the education sector though grin

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