A small question of release

March 16, 2006

It’s been a busy time for me at work, this last week or so.  I’ve been preparing to take two weeks away from the classroom later this term, to go on a block professional development course.  Which means a lot of work before I go, making sure everything will run smoothly in my absence, and minimising the impact for my students.

I’ve been planning, in my head and on paper, for several months in fact, although a lot of it couldn’t really be done until classes started and I knew the dynamics up front.  But I diligently applied for the release in late November last year, through the usual processes, and thought everything on that front, at least, was dealt with.

The usual way things work at my school is that you apply to your departmental head for the leave and then if you hear nothing bad it’s fine.  This was my natural assumption when December, January and February all ticked by with only positive comments about my release from my HOD, as we sorted out how it would work and who would cover my various classes.

Then late last week I got a letter from the Principal, quite nastily written (and as you know I’m rather good at nasty myself, so I can admire it when it’s expressed eloquently by others). 

What it amounted to was that I had applied for the leave quite incorrectly and that while it would be grudgingly (and generously) granted despite my monumental error, I should note for future reference that in fact I am supposed to apply directly to the Principal and the BOT. 

Funny, I thought, I’m sure that’s not what the policy says.  So I checked.  What the policy says is that I should apply to my manager.  That would be my HOD.  What the Principal’s letter states is that I should apply to my employer, which means the BOT, via the Principal in the first instance.  These are two mutually exclusive options.

In addition, the Principal sent a copy of the letter to the PPTA delegate for the school, patronisingly writing that it is often good to approach the delegate for advice on these matters.  She must surely recall that I used to be the delegate a few years back.  (What she doesn’t appear to know is that the teacher she sent a copy of the letter to is in fact no longer the delegate and hasn’t been for some months.  Sucks to be her.)

So basically I was supposed to obey an imaginary policy which does not exist on paper, which in fact contradicts the policy that does exist on paper, and which was only pointed out to me two weeks before the leave, despite the fact that I applied for it four months in advance.

Clearly this is all my fault.



2 Responses to “A small question of release”

  1. […] I’ve already posted about my intention to take leave soon, for two weeks at the end of term when I’ll be on a course.  What I haven’t mentioned is my frustrations about the organisation of cover for these measley two weeks.  I shall enumerate these for clarity, in no particular order: […]

  2. shelly Says:

    i love that rug!

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