Treated like a child!

A few years back I was working in an outstanding school, with outstanding grades and exceptional pressures to have outstanding lessons! At the time I was Head of Department and there would be surprise Learning Area Reviews occur during the academic year. The time came for my department to be scrutinised and in the department there were three of us. One teacher got their lesson graded at a 2 (good) while myself and another member got a grade 4.

The SLT that observed my lesson gave me feedback and gave his reasoning on why he felt it was a grade 4. I told him, “If that is what you think it is, then let it be.” A few days later I get pulled into the Head’s office with his two deputies with him there (one of them was the one who observed me). It was three against one and time to treat a fellow colleague like a child. The Head goes into a rant, screaming and shouting:

  • You are the Head of department… how can you get a grade 4 for your lesson?
  • What type of leader are you?
  • How can others look up to you for direction?
  • I can understand if you were ill and delivered a lesson that was graded 4 but you weren’t ill… were you?
  • And he went on and on and on…

I felt I was a child being reprimanded for doing something naughty… being totally disrespected… losing all confidence… and as I sat there I thought screw this. I slouched down on my chair like a naughty child with little care, started to show lack of attention to what he was saying and when he finished his rant I said, “Is that it?”

At that point there was silent and I walked out. I guess this is a new breed of Head’s that have entered our education system but will also add that not all are like this either.



  1. Lee Dumpleton
    February 11, 2019

    I have experienced the same. In fact, I’m off school now because of it. I put in a grievance against the Head because of her unprofessional behaviour. I was expecting to be sacked, but they decided to go through the grievance procedure which has been very long and drawn out and I have to stay at home – on full pay, fortunately – while it goes on. I’m sure they will eventually clear the Head of all wrongdoing and blame me and I’ll have to move on to another school. I’m 60 now but in my ‘first’ career, was HoD in 2 schools, assistant head and then deputy head and operational head. Since I’ve given up senior leadership, I feel like I am treated like a naughty child who doesn’t know as much as these bright new things (who normally can’t teach but just tell others what they are doing wrong). Like you, I don’t accept it and normally get sacked or told to leave. Teaching never used to be like this. No wonder there is such a shortage of teachers.


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