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11-05-2010, 08:27 AM   #1
Rebecca85
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Work! (not Crohn's related)

Thank god Friday is a half day! Got off to a bad start when one of the kids (I work in a school) got a massive nosebleed before school even started. But some people have really got on my wick today.

Bit of background: all the infants- 4 classes, about 110 children- are put into 6 groups by ability for phonics sessions. Myself and another assistant take the extra 2 groups.

One of the teachers thought I should have more children in my group (I only have 8), because the other assistant has 16. And that's 'not fair'. But the other assistant uses the spare classroom, I have to work in a corridor! Also 3 of the teachers have groups of about 25, one teacher (who the other assistant 'belongs' to) has a group of 14. So surely rather than giving me more kids to even it out between us assistants, the teacher should take some kids off her assistant. After all, teachers have more qualifications and get paid more than us assistants do!

So we're having a meeting about all this on Monday. But when it came time to swap children round for phonics work, one of the teachers ('G') was doing something and wanted to keep her own class. So some of my group didn't come, and some children were waiting for G. So I took them into my group instead. So then G complained because I had children from other classes but not hers (I am supposed to be shared fairly between classes).

Oh, and did I mention I had to abandon my group anyway because another child (one of G's class of course!) got a nosebleed and I had to go and sort her out.

At least I have the weekend to recover now and plan what I want to say on Monday. Part of the problem is I get tearful real easily now, and when things are sprung upon me I often panic and cry. I've had other members of staff complain about it before! (I think they must think I put it on to try and get sympathy or something).

Well I feel a bit better for having got it all off my chest! Well done if you read this far
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11-05-2010, 10:03 AM   #2
Cat-a-Tonic
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Sorry to hear things aren't going so well at work, Rebecca. I totally understand about crying easily - I am the same way! I usually duck into the bathroom at work if I feel myself tearing up for whatever reason, although sometimes I'm not able to get away and just end up crying at my desk and hoping nobody notices me. Recently, after a cry at work, my nose was still sniffly and my eyes were red and watery, and when someone asked me what was wrong, I managed to play it off as an allergy attack. "Oh, there must be some bad pollen in the air today, it's really affecting my eyes and my nose!"

I hope you are able to get things resolved fairly on Monday. Just make sure to tell them what you've said here - that you have to work in the corridor instead of a classroom, that you helped the other teacher with her student who had a nosebleed even though it wasn't really your obligation to do so, and the fact that you're an assistant and not a teacher, etc. And maybe have a good cry before the meeting so that you get some of those emotions out of your system and are less apt to cry during the meeting. Good luck!
11-05-2010, 11:48 AM   #3
Rebecca85
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I typically use the 'I've got a cold' excuse to explain runny eyes and red nose! And unfortunately it's not that easy to duck into the bathroom at work (though I do seem to spend a lot of time in the cupboard!). It's just the unfairness of it all that gets to me! The teacher with the small group gets her own way all the freaking time, she takes advantage of the assistant, and the assistant won't stand up for herself. Example: due to the age of the children in that class, the law says they need a full time assistant. The teacher won't let the assistant take a 10 minute break if she misses her scheduled one (sometimea this happens when we have injuries or emergencies to deal with), but it's OK for the teacher to go to a dentist appointment and leave the assistant in charge for an hour or so! But I digress! I think if all else fails I will just have to point blank refuse, it's not in my contract, I just don't want it to come to that in case there's bad feelings.
11-05-2010, 12:50 PM   #4
Astra
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Oh Dear!
This is so familiar!
Using us as teachers is so out of order! Sod the bad feelings, use us, don't abuse us!
I think it's time you spoke to your line manager and a plan of action taken, failing that, speak to your union, and point out that it's not in your contract, also if you work for 4 hours or more, you have to have a break away from the classroom and kids, or they're breaking Employment Law!
I know, I'm the Unison steward at my school
Have a lovely chillaxed weekend Rebecca, I will be too! TFI Friday!!
xxxx
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11-06-2010, 04:55 AM   #5
Rebecca85
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Technically speaking, the woman who started the discussion is my line manager, but if things aren't resolved satisfactorily on Monday I will have to see the head. As for breaks, we do 3 1/2 hours before we stop for lunch, so technically we're not entitled to a break, but because we're not allowed drinks in classrooms (only plain water in a plastic bottle, bleh), and of course we need to go to the toilet, we normally get a midmorning break when the kids do. I insist on getting my break, if I miss it for any reason I have to be allowed to get my drink and snack, I even had to go and have a sit down in the middle of sports day, because I felt so shaky and weird from not getting my snack on time! But I can't negotiate stuff like that for other people, I have told the other assistant to stand up for herself and that people will understand, but she doesn't want to make a fuss!
11-10-2010, 11:45 AM   #6
Rebecca85
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Well, the meeting went well on Monday, the teacher who first brought up the issue with the groups must have been doing some thinking over the weekend, because on Monday she straight away told the other teacher she had to have more children (though for a different reason to what I said). So that was a relief.

But then (cue creepy music) Ofsted turned up! (well they gave us 3 hours warning) so everything has been manic the last 2 days. But it's over now, thank goodness!
11-10-2010, 01:34 PM   #7
bushydougie
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Woah! What a few days you've had! Did ofsted go ok?
Glad the other issues have been somewhat resolved. I've had to try and fight for my rights as a teacher too. It's not easy is it. Especially when there's 30 odd kids demanding your attention!! I'm supposed to get a 5 min break after my playground duty but normally I just manage a swig of a drink and have to get on with it... That day is always my hardest!!!
Hope you're going to get some rest in after the joy of ofsted
11-11-2010, 12:20 PM   #8
Rebecca85
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You don't know the half of it! Monday pm some poor kid had diarrhoea in the classroom, so I had to sort him out (phone mum, etc, luckily I don't do bum wiping now), tuesday ofsted + check up + rush hour traffic = very late home. Yesterday I was on first aid duty in the afternoon, there were loads of kids needing attention for some reason, I was just getting ready to go when another kid came up and said 'Miss, I've pooed my pants a bit' (no, I don't know how you poo your pants a bit either).

But Ofsted seems to have gone well, we will just have to wait and see now. But it was a lot more relaxed in the staffroom today (and we had cakes!), but I have been really fatigued again, not sure if it was stress, or time of the month related (or a combination!). But anyway I've been having afternoon naps again oh well, half day tomorrow and weekend, yay!
11-12-2010, 05:30 AM   #9
Dexky
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The more I read this thread, the more I like my truck!! Thanks all you teachers out there!! Geez, what you put up with!!
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