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14-09-2019, 17:10   #1
teachinggal123
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More problems with work and Principal ...

I'll try to explain this as simply as I can. I was suffering from stress/depression last year and missed a lot of time between Jan 2019 and April 2019. Every day off was covered by a sick cert, and I got back and I worked all of May 2019. I worked very, very hard all over the summer to get myself healthy. I worked on my med's and getting them right. I did a lot of counselling and mindfulness. I tried my best to get better.

I wasn't looking forward to going back at the end of Aug, but I did and (amazingly!) I was really enjoying the first 2 weeks back. Then something very serious happened to a family member. I was missing on the Friday this happened, and ended up with stress/depression the following week where my doctor told me to DEFINITELY not go to work that week, as if I did he though there would be a good chance of a relapse of my conditions and I might end up missing a lot of time.

I informed my principle of this and he was not happy. I sent him the sick cert which covered all of last week. He has been texting me (we don't have email systems) and phoning me while I've been certified off sick. He has now told me he wants me to come in early on Monday morning for a meeting. He has already said one of my exam classes have expressed their their unhappiness with missing my classes.

I have spoken to the union and friends about this and I have received advice that this is not my fault (entirely at least) and that the S+S system should kick in when I'm certified sick. A number of people also expressed surprise when I told them I'm being texted/called when I'm officially certified as sick.

I'm not sure what to do. I know all the blame for this is being shifted on to me, but I don't feel like I deserve it. I definitely don't want to be suffering and off sick ... but that is not my choice nor my fault. Any school related issues should be dealt with by the school systems, S+S, right? If I'm off longer they should get a replacement ... "their problem, not mine" is what I've been told.

I know I'm simplifying this, but I'm really upset and feeling like a confrontation on Monday morning might tip me over the edge again and I'll end up very sick and off for a long time. I've already told the principle about my health issues but he doesn't seem to care much either way. He was drafted into this job which was seen as a "problem" school a few years ago. The general impression is that he's ruling with an iron fist in order to clean us all up and get career progression (one of the most ambitions people I've met).

Any advice/opinions very welcome.

Last edited by spurious; 14-09-2019 at 20:26.
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14-09-2019, 17:34   #2
Gloomtastic!
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Principal!
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14-09-2019, 17:43   #3
aristotle25
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Stand up for yourself and stand up to this person. Don’t go in early for a meeting, that’s your own time.

Tell this person not to be texting you and ringing you frequently.

Deal with him professionally and civilly but make sure you stand up for yourself.
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14-09-2019, 17:47   #4
teachinggal123
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Originally Posted by aristotle25 View Post
Stand up for yourself and stand up to this person. Don’t go in early for a meeting, that’s your own time.

Tell this person not to be texting you and ringing you frequently.

Deal with him professionally and civilly but make sure you stand up for yourself.
Yes that’s good advice. I did lay down a bit in May because I was so battered and low.

The problem is that he is clever. He knows how to bully without being a bully (if that makes sense). He knows how to make my life miserable.

But I will stand up strong on Monday.
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14-09-2019, 17:52   #5
Treppen
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Originally Posted by Gloomtastic! View Post
Principal!
Can't believe morons would actually thanks this.

But anyway op your principal sounds like an idiot. I have a feeling if certain other teachers were out he wouldn't be putting it on them about letting their students down. Like what the f does he expect you to do. If he can't deal with employees being sick then he ain't a boss.

Whatever happens don't ever agree to a meeting without someone present and an indication as to what it's about beforehand. If you have to meet some At the very least record the meeting on your phone and take notes.

Sometimes you might be better off with legal advice or a solicitors letter if he keeps harassing you rather than waiting for union help. But your solicitor will ask you for evidence like a diary or emails etc.

Last edited by Treppen; 14-09-2019 at 17:59.
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14-09-2019, 18:04   #6
GarIT
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Can't believe morons would actually thanks this.
Why? I wouldn't want someone like that teaching my kids.
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14-09-2019, 18:12   #7
teachinggal123
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Why? I wouldn't want someone like that teaching my kids.
When you are stressed and suffering from depression you do the silliest things.

Hopefully that won’t ever happen to you.
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14-09-2019, 18:14   #8
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The only thing that really matters here is your health. It is unfortunate that your students may be concerned about exams and so on but that is of secondary importance. The idea of the Principal contacting you when you are out is not professional. Perhaps an odd communication but nothing more. (Am presuming part of this communication has been to enquire on your health and how you are doing?)

I wouldn't necessarily be put out by an early meeting. We all do things out of hours. Let it be known you are aware of your rights. Don't apologise for being sick.

Do take the spelling advice.
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14-09-2019, 20:29   #9
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Mod: This forum is not a spelling test. Neither is it a place where people are called 'morons'. Let's rein it in.


OP, involve your union. This will not be the first example of his management style.
If you are sick, you are sick. He has no business ringing you. He also has no business knowing the nature of your illness, but if I read you correctly he already knows?
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14-09-2019, 20:45   #10
teachinggal123
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Mod: This forum is not a spelling test. Neither is it a place where people are called 'morons'. Let's rein it in.


OP, involve your union. This will not be the first example of his management style.
If you are sick, you are sick. He has no business ringing you. He also has no business knowing the nature of your illness, but if I read you correctly he already knows?
Yes he knows. I discussed this at length with him last year in an effort to keep him informed and be as honest as possible. Looks like that was a mistake as this has been used against me.
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14-09-2019, 20:46   #11
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Firstly, this is a terrible situation and no one should be treated in this manner when they are sick, be the ailment physical or mental.

Secondly, if I was in this situation I would be wary about going to a meeting alone. You have mentioned you are feeling fragile and a principal/principle (don't mind the spelling Nazis) may be aggressive if you are alone given their form. Would you have someone on staff you trust you could ask to sit in, ideally the union rep?

Lastly, if the meeting doesn't go well you should really consider the union. Sometimes the only way to deal with a bully is head on. Unfortunately people don't always choose to use their power as carefully as they should.

Again I'm sorry you are going through this and I hope you feel better! Mind yourself
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14-09-2019, 20:49   #12
punisher5112
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As above contact your union...

Do not go alone.....
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14-09-2019, 22:03   #13
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Not the first time I’ve heard of a story like this .Some principals really are beneath contempt .
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14-09-2019, 22:11   #14
teachinggal123
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I’m reluctant to involve the union to be honest. That would be a red rag to a bull and would definitely escalate things to the next level. This means I would have EVERYTHING possible used against me. There have already been references to this where he has referred to me being discussed by the SMT in my ETB.
This was in relation to a few mistakes I made with student corrections and assessment last May after getting back to work. I (very stupidly) corrected work when I was out sick after he asked me to and made some minor enough mistakes that were picked up in IV. I’ll be hammered with this if I go “official”.

Another thing to mention is that all of this is very intimidating and difficult to battle against when I’m in such a fragile mental state. In the past I just agreed with everything he said to me ... I just wanted the meeting to be over as quickly as possible so that I could go and cry in my car or the nearest quiet corner (I'm serious btw).
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14-09-2019, 22:27   #15
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Believe me, do not go alone... You are already telling us you see red flags.....

You need to use the union that's what they're there for.
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