Chatroom - Horrible colleagues

31st July 2009 at 01:00

Posted by willowwood

Hello everyone - enjoying my holiday but beginning to feel apprehensive at returning to work with some unpleasant colleagues. There are a couple who do nothing but complain and moan, and seem to have no interest in the children. I've been the subject of barbed remarks and am sick of the little looks between them and sudden silences when I walk into the room. I'm not the only one who has to put up with this - at least one other person has had the same treatment. All I can do is ignore them and get on with my job and, where possible, spend time with more pleasant colleagues, but it's a very small school.

Posted by Dominie

They like the power and control it affords them. Such people have to be challenged by their managers. I suggest that when you return to work, you keep a record of the incidents which cause you discomfort and distress. Speak to your HT and ask her to take note of your concerns. You might be able to persuade other colleagues to join you in this? Look at your employer's policy on workplace bullying: the kind of behaviour you describe will be prohibited. Your HT will realise that action is required. This may be a quiet word from another senior member of staff (PT?) in the first instance but may end up in disciplinary action against the offenders.

Posted by grunwald

Dominie's advice is excellent. SMT should be challenging this. There is one other thing - and it's not easy to say. But is there anything you do which might be turning them against you? It sounds unlikely, if another colleague is receiving similar treatment.

Posted by Flyonthewall

Forgive me if I'm wrong, but are we talking about female staff? The reason I ask is because it usually starts to become a problem around Primary 6. While 10-year-old boys can kick lumps out of each other during a football game at morning break, they have usually made up by lunchtime. Some girls, on the other hand, seem to control their friendship groups with, as you say, barbed remarks and meaningful little looks, and can keep hurtful rivalries going for days, weeks, months and even years. Fast forward into adulthood and the same unpleasant characteristics can still be seen, especially in a small school setting where most of the staff are female.

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