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marley
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Well I did think things were going too well!

New manager has been in place since Dec. Got one staff that is pregnant, a deputy that should have been manager but stepped down as frightened of OFSTED, another that I have been asking and asking to do safeguarding course and is avoiding at all costs and they are all 21 yrs old. Got school cook (who is unqualified but fab with the kids etc) as bank staff who intially loved doing 1 session per week but now wants to resign!!!

She says new manager is very money orientated, manager has said to other staff that she doesnt need to do things as deputy does it all anyway and cook says that they are all really lazy, dont interact with children (except deputy) etc etc. This is on top of complaints I have received from school that rooms used are not tidy. Cook has said that deputy is not happy and that she has told deputy to speak to me. I managed 5 mins with deputy before manager arrived. Deputy said staff are feeling "undermined by manager" (didnt have time to get to bottom of that one, that deputy was left alone after shift for 30 mins to tidy up whilst manager went home.

to which she said..no, "marleuy"

Things from my point of view before I knew all this..on Mon I asked manager how her first part of first aid course went on sat..she said ok but seeing as she worked on sat shouldnt she get paid time and half instead of time..this is on top of the 40p per mile we agreed to pay her in petrol. Given that she is on the course as she wanted to go on first aid (we dont actually need it as all other staff have it) and that there are ladies from my own workplace that are there but not being paid as pre-school cant afford it I must admit to saying she is lucky she gets paid to attend!!! Whilst at the training the manager told a work colleague of mine what a fantastic job she was doing at school club. My colleague said oh you work with "marley" to which she said "marley" has a cushy number and just does the odd shift!!!!

hmm...I work there when there is no one else to cover to ensure ratio, i am committee and spent that last year training her, doing policies, procedures, ensuring contracts, apparaisals, correct holiday pay, that they get to go on training that they want to do, that they get paid for it, the SEF etc etc...no havent done much really :(:oxD Needlesss to say I was little annoyed but was willing to let it go until I heard this other stuff tonight.

 

Not really sure how to proceed with this. I am speaking to the current chair about this tonight but chair is only in office until mon when it had been planned that I was to take over (unless miracle we got someone else who wants to do it).

 

Manager is due her appraisal as she has been with us 3 months (had 1 month holiday) as is the deputy. The manager was supposed to do deputy appraisal with chair but im now thinking to make it so that it is chair/committee so that deputy can feel free to discuss.What do you think?

 

Anyone got any advice on how to proceed? Manager is young, inexperienced at management but I have recently ensured that she has attended a leadership and management course etc etc.

 

Thanks

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Lots of issues here - seems as if this young lady feels her job is a cushy number and she doesn't understand about teamwork and good practice, as she is still on a probationary period in this role now is the best time to tackle issues before it becomes even harder to change her attitude. Suggest for her appraisal she is asked to consider and comment (in writing) about how well she is meeting her job description ( assume she has one?) and to identify areas where she feels she needs support /extra training, this will give you an idea of her perceptions.

Then ask her about ways she feels she can improve the setting - and what she is going to do about it , basically get her to suggest and then almost write her own action points. Set targets with firm timescales, you will need one about building the team and working on peoples strengths , at least one about her own development /improvement, and one for improving/strengthening the setting.

You will have to tell her of the potential risk of her not achieving the targets set, i.e. possible demotion , and the benefits of success - maybe an incentive of some sort financial or otherwise. Also try and get her out to visit other settings and shadow good practice, if she hasn't had that experience she won't know what it will look like in your setting.

Good Luck - it's never easy but better to find out when you have the possibility of moving someone on if unsuited, rather than trying to move them once they have been accepted into a role longterm. You have to start as you mean to go on, firm but fair. :o

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Sorry can't help with much advice but as the Leader of the group I do find it better that my Chair does the appraisals. Staff can be honest with her and she in turn is honest with me. It works really well and as a new staff team going through the 'storming' stage, it does get better or at least it is supposed to, I feel the other staff need the chance to air their views with the committee

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As for the Deputy - she really needs somebody else to do her appraisal rather than the Manager unless you want to lose her - and it sounds as if she is a good practitioner so can't imagine you want that to happen . As Manager hasn't had experience of carrying out appraisal am sure you can get round that for present time, by telling her that until she has done some joint appraisals with an experiences appraiser it might not be a good idea. :o

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Some great ideas from Redjayne there already - so not much more to add!

How do you generally pay for training? I expect my staff to do 24 hours over the year and I pay them a 'blanket' 2 hours a month for this. This means that when they do, say, a 12 hour first aid course, they have already had their money, or can see that they will be getting it. My Deputy and I have done over our 24 hours now, and therefore if we do any more I may pay 'overtime' for that, it depends what it is really.

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Hi

Some great ideas there.

Paying for training has since we took over as committee that staff got paid their normal hourly rate for any they attended. All training been outof school club hours ie mornings. Seeing as we were running on bare minimum first aid, etc we then had manager not return from maternity and 2 senior playworkers resign so the new staff have allbeen safeguarding bar 1, 4 first aid, 2 senco,manager and deputy designated safeguarding, health and safety, equality, OFSTED inspection training for deputy and manager and leadership for manager..so lots of money invested after years of nothing.

 

Have been checking out her job description also and so will use that during her appraisal. I keep asking her to complete some of her action plan which is to read/know the welfare requirements, to read the SEF we have done on her behalf.eg I did ask her how she knows her staff continue to be sutiable for the job.....answer they have qualifications..is thisjust inexperience???..i said yes but also yearly health decs (which we asked her to redo last week), training, appraisals. I told her these are things OFSTED will ask (5ys since last inspection!). I do honestly feel we have all paperwork in place but what will let us down is the staff. She rang me up last week to ask if she could give child medicine when we hadnt got a form filled out by parent.....I knew the answer but had to say to her to read the policy :wacko: I feel like I am the manager just not on site. When do i stop holding their hands as i feel its a long way off yet? I wish OFSTED would come in to shake them up a bit and so at least we would know one way or another.

 

Will definately do deputy apprisal without manager. Deputy has done all the other staff given that manager only been therecouple of months.

 

When she took on the job we gave her extra 9 hrs per week for admin and said that her wgae would increase to £9 per hour :oxD:( (well paid eh??!!) from £8.50 once trained and experienced. I personally dont feel she warrants it at the moment. She has also been given the tel no of another club for herself and deputy to visit. Think I will push that at her appraisal.

 

All this with AGM on mon, school not sharing rooms with us, thinking how on earth we are going to cover maternity when cant get qualified staff for permanent job...its great!!! :( :( xD

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Marley, could I ask who wanted the after school club set up?

 

If it was the school, could it be that the head teacher needs to come in and support you with this? I feel like I do loads as Chair, but I have nowhere near the stress that you have. If I was you, I'm afraid that I would be moments from chucking in the towel. That sounds awfully defeatist but you are putting in an awful lot of effort and if staff don't step up to the mark then it all falls on you.

 

Your manager sounds like she needs a fright, and the appraisal might be the time to do that. I seem to remember you had trouble recruiting so you might not want to put her off, but to be honest without an effective leader you are not going to get far. I don't suppose you could resign as committee and take over as leader - sounds like you would be great at the job!

 

:o

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manager sounds like she needs a fright, and the appraisal might be the time to do that.

Personally I don't think appraisals should be used to tackle issues such as these in the first instance. If this had been an ongoing situation which had previously been discussed with the employee, then obviously it would form part of the appraisal process. Although an appraisal should be an honest review of performance and progress, I don't think they should contain any shocks, and if I turned up for my appraisal thinking everything was fine (on the basis that no issues had been previously raised) only to find that there is a major criticism with my practice I think I'd feel very let down and unsupported.

 

I'd rather extend the manager's probationary period, raise the issues that are of concern and agree a package of support and improvement with dates for review. Once the manager is back on track then you can make a decision about whether she has successfully completed her probationary period at that stage.

 

marley something very similar happened to me when I first took over the supervisor's job of my pre-school. One particular member of staff started a whispering campaign against me, took other staff members' views and embellished and twisted them, and it escalated out of all proportion. Fortunately my boss at the time supported me 100% and she and I looked openly and honestly at how we had been running things and made changes where they were appropriate, but retained other aspects of my job and style, and she made it very clear that as supervisor I was in charge, and that this is how things would be from now on.

 

Looking back, I was so tempted at that stage to throw in the towel but it was only having my boss completely behind me that I was able to move on. Who knows where I would have been if this particular person had been successful at what she was trying to do. What my boss was able to do was take the emotion out of the situation, listen to all sides and then talked to me about how I was feeling, and involved me in reaching a solution that I felt comfortable with.

 

I hope you are able to do the same for your team, and get to the bottom of what is going on. I guess you've reached the 'storming' stage of the team building cycle, let's hope you can progress to the norming and performing stages soon!

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Again some top advice! Have just done her appraisal (on paper - she completes how she thinks she has done what she needs to do etc and we complete the same to compare) and when you look at it there are quite a few positives on it. She already has an action plan but i must admit to being less than pleased with how she is not getting through it. Last week I did have to stress that the committee had been waiting for at least a few things to be done that had long since passed the deadline. An extension to probation sounds the best idea.

 

The club was set up by the school and run by them until 2000 when it was given over to committee. 6 months ago the chair went to see the head to say that there was too much work for the committee to do...we had lost 3 staff could not recruit a manager etc etc. he said he would think about it...never got back to us!! Whenever he takes prospective parents round school he sings the praises of club and of course doesnt mention that we are full and the chance of getting a place are nearly 0. He is one of those super heads (our school has been outstanding in every OFSTED) so is far too busy to become really involved. In fact he normally poaches the club staff to work as TAs in the school for better pay and conditions (lost 3 this way). Recruitment has always been a nightmare.

 

I have spent a long time in the last year sorting stuff out. ive done all the paperwork a manager should do ie sef, policies, booking training etc all for free. Wouldnt mind managing it so long as i didnt have to be with the children!!!!?? They are exhausting at that age and i do prefer being with my littlies at pre-school.

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