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Are there other jobs where you are micromanaged and fear for your job the same way as teaching at the moment?

(87 Posts)
Letseatgrandma Sun 06-Dec-15 22:26:27

There appears to be the belief at the moment that if teachers aren't continually watched, observed, assessed and improved that we will not do any work! Where did this belief come from. I am sick of people looking through my books, studying my data and watching me teach. The assumption is always that I'm fine at the moment, but that 'you're only ever as good as your last observation' so watch your back!

My DH has a 'normal' job in the city. He's a graduate and has a job with decent pay and some stress, but it's not even within the same league. His boss would question him if he did nothing, I'm sure-but there's no assumption that he needs to be watched. I'm sick of it to be honest.

Are other jobs the same on a daily basis-with the threat of SMT and Ofsted ever present? The feeling that if you're over 30, you're very expensive and frankly just not valued any more.

PacificDogwod Sun 06-Dec-15 22:28:07

I'm a GP.
I love what I consider to be my job, but not the crap that goes with it.

Letseatgrandma Sun 06-Dec-15 22:29:51

It's crap isn't it? Where's the trust?!

Are you 'watched' with people with cliipboards as a GP; do people come in and see how you 'perform', or is it all done through audits and paper trails?

BillMurrey Sun 06-Dec-15 22:31:40

Of course there are. I think teaching is a bit late to the party quite frankly.

I left my last job as I was constantly monitored in the way you describe and working a full time job in part time hours. When I left I was replaced with an apprentice. Apparently she's close to breaking point. This was a project management position in the Voluntary Sector.
I hear similar stories from friends and family in a variety of different roles, Nursing in particular.

PacificDogwod Sun 06-Dec-15 22:32:59

Every keystroke I make is recorded and analyse, audit trails everywhere.
I don't object at all to ongoing learning (there is no way you could be a doctor for decades and not constantly update yourself), but I have to spend hours of my own time proving and documenting that I do what I do. While being told by politicians and the media that I am greedy and lazy.

My 'part-time' job is now 50hrs/week.
If I could, I'd stop.
Like many, many doctors all over the country are doing.
GPs are a dying breed, nobody wants to be one and I can see why.

PacificDogwod Sun 06-Dec-15 22:33:22

No clipboards, no grin.
Silver lining, I suppose, eh?

itsbetterthanabox Sun 06-Dec-15 22:35:32

Yes a lot of lower paid office jobs are like this and customer services. Constantly monitored, micromanaged at threatened with disciplinaries but for minimum wage.

PacificDogwod Sun 06-Dec-15 22:35:45

Yes, I think public services ARE a bit late to the party, but I genuinely fail to see how this constant 'breathing down your neck' form of management is meant to get the best out of people?
It's demoralising and dispiriting, as well as insulting and IMO counterproductive.
So much of what I do can not be 'counted' or recorded and therefore counts for nothing, but is actually the most valuable aspect of what I do. I think similar goes for teaching.

mineofuselessinformation Sun 06-Dec-15 22:37:44

Sadly, it's part and parcel of being a teacher nowadays. You don't have to just do your job well, but be able to prove it, on a regular basis.
It's very sad that professional trust is gone, but that's how it is. sad

Ubik1 Sun 06-Dec-15 22:44:31

I worked in a call centre where your toilet breaks were monitored - 5 mins max every hour in a 10 hour shift. All breaks timed to the second. Even on an 11 hour nightshift. Everything you did was documented/listened to. Your call times were analysed and you were pulled up for it if you went over the time.

It was a boot camp. But st least once you finished a shift it was done -teaching just seems like a special kind of hell .

Roseformeplease Sun 06-Dec-15 22:44:36

Not in all schools. Things seem to be done with a much lighter touch in my neck of the woods. 2 orbs per year as part of professional development plus any you choose to arrange to monitor your own practice. No looking at books etc. Only results really scrutinised and, even then, nothing much comes of it as long as you have a paper trail flagging underachievement.

rollonthesummer Sun 06-Dec-15 22:45:47

It makes me sick that schools are desperate for funding so are having to make teachers or teaching assistants redundant or emply unqualified teachers, and can't afford to print, photocopy or buy pencils, yet there are bloated numbers of SMT whose salaries and non-teaching timetable are protected from such cuts. It is just ridiculous.

There are hardly any teachers in my school over 40-they are too expensive and are suddenly found to be 'requiring improvement' when they hit UPS3! We're going to need to work till we're 68, but who's going to hire us!?

AnyFucker Sun 06-Dec-15 22:47:13


I work for the NHS and can actually feel the sword hanging over my head

I sympathise. I think teachers do a very difficult job and have never understood how making it more stressful is at all helpful

ggirl Sun 06-Dec-15 22:52:33

yup , nursing
I'm a community in all jobs we spend the majority of our time covering our arses .
Nobody with clipboards watching me very often though ...would quite like someone from top management come and see what its really like on the frontline though.

AnyFucker Sun 06-Dec-15 22:55:41

I don't think it will be too long before I have to wear some kind of camera/voice recording device about my person while I go about my duties

happytocomply Sun 06-Dec-15 23:05:50

I'm a nurse and the job mostly involved writing things down as required by my NHS Trust to cover my arse. Then I became a slightly more senior nurse and the job involved checking other nurses had written things down to cover their arses plus mountains of other data collection just for fun. Can't wait to return from maternity leave. Being a teacher sounds just as grim.

kickassangel Sun 06-Dec-15 23:08:48

The thing is with many jobs that involve people, there isn't a lazy option. Anyone who attempts to be lazy would end up with rioting kids and obvious lapses in grades etc. for teaching, so it would become very obvious if someone was trying to be like that. So there isn't really a need for a load of SMT to be doing weekly observations etc. unless there's a) a problem or b) someone wanting a promotion.

I would imagine that any kind of medical care is the same - I highly doubt that any nurses are sitting around ignoring the patients.

So why not get rid of all the paperwork, and instead hire more nurse/doctors/teachers etc?

Do you think that firefighters will have to start writing out a plan of action before responding to a call? That seems to be the ways things are going.

Ripeningapples Sun 06-Dec-15 23:14:34

The thing is though I am a child of the 60s. We moved house and a brand new fab school had been built. Few walls, lots of beanbags, learning by self expression, head was an art teacher. Local council welcomed the approach. In 1968 my parents had me in the local Indy after two terms. 40% of my Indy year went to the grammar school. 12 of us compared to two of them. Two years later that school stopped getting children into the grammar. Everyone knew it was a bad school but for two decades or more it was able to make excuses. I think it"s good schools like that are now under the microscope.

Pacific. I think good doctors and teachers are invaluable. Every time I phone my bank or insurer or phone company I get a text asking me to rate them. In the last couple of months one of the GPs at my practice has sworn about a receptionist in a consultation because she couldn't get him a technophobe logged into my records, provided incorrect info about blood tests, another has refused to refer my self harming child whom CAMHS wouldn't help to a private therapist/psych and told me to find my own off the internet and another has told me I have to call her Dr Bloggs because it's her name whilst calling me dear repeatedly.

While I appreciate some of your frustrations, I don't get a rating text when I've been to the GP. I know there are pressures on your profession but I don't understand why the public should be grateful for services that could be far better. Sometimes it's just the little things that are pretty obvious. Like addressing the public as your equal because they are your equals, or making sure that John, Jane's and Sheila's repeat prescriptions aren't included with yours.

I work full-time, paid for 35 hours pw and usually put in between 45 and 50 for about £50k. I would never ever openly complain about that to a client/customer. It's what I expect to do as a professional.

When the rating texts start coming I think then dr's nurses and teachers will be under the microscope. For a long time the poor performance of the few has been swept under the carpet and sadly the chickens are coming home to roost.

I will always write a thank you for good service but I reserve the right to complain about poor service and unacceptable standards.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Sun 06-Dec-15 23:16:03

Midwife. Oh god yes. I could do the job standing on my head. But the micro management blame culture is killing me.

AnyFucker Sun 06-Dec-15 23:17:25

The thing is though, hwo do you measure what your "acceptable standards" are when faced with constant cuts, vacancy freezes, chronic understaffing and erosion of good will ?

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Sun 06-Dec-15 23:19:13

I would say I spend 4/5 of my time writing down what's happened, what ive done, if ive offered someone a cup of tea I have to write it down. If it's not written down it didn't happen, etc. Then 1/5 of my time actually doing any care.

Ripeningapples Sun 06-Dec-15 23:31:33

That's absurd whothefuck. Why did it get like that?

Mind you, your comment about "if it isn't written down it didn't happen" rings alarm bells. The midwife who looked after me with ds1 didn't write down "left lady in pain on public ward. Did internal with curtain separating her from bloke and two dc visiting another woman and loudly commented about her cervix and laughed and said if this is what you are like now I feel sorry for you when things really get going". Nice public running commentary. I'll never forget it and DS1 is 21! If I'd got a customer service micro management text it might have helped the women behind me who were entitled to more dignity and kindness.

Posterior baby btw, nearly died because midwife thought heartbeat disappearing was dodgy monitor. Wonder if she wrote that down. If I'd complained I might have found out. But I was just glad to have a baby and grateful although I think the experience precipitated clinical PND.

noblegiraffe Sun 06-Dec-15 23:41:16

Parents don't need a 'rate this teacher' text invitation to phone in and complain. As you can tell from MN.

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Sun 06-Dec-15 23:42:28

It's got a lot worse the last two years.

The "if it's not written down it didn't happen" phrase is more of a one way thing. Obviously a horrible midwife isn't going to write down "I was a sarcastic bitch to MrsX". So it doesn't mean that of Mrs X then compalains that the hospital will say it can't have happened.

However if MrsX complains she wasn't offered tea and toast at regular intervals then unless the midwife had written it down it didn't hsppen. The midwife might say to the manager well I did offer her tea and toast but the manager will say "not according to your notes" amd bollock the midwife.

Tea and toast is a minor example but it counts for everything, observations, breastfeeding help, checking wounds, changing sheets, checking pressure areas, asking women if they feel ok.

noblegiraffe Mon 07-Dec-15 00:00:14

What's to stop you faking a load of tea and toast if you know you have neglected a patient? I'm assuming they don't do a bread count to tally at the end of the day.

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