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  1. #1
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    Default Teachers advice please!

    Hi, I am pregnant, 7 and a half weeks.....and what's that the school term only started 7 weeks ago.....I know, I know.

    Now I am in a difficult position! I am a first year grad teacher who accidentally fell pregnant, kept crying after school and falling asleep was not able to get through my work load as I was just so tired. Thought it as stress, when I missed my first period I thought it was stress!

    The principal took me out of my class after 4 weeks, when I asked for extra support ( also had an extremely difficult class, this has been discussed with other teachers at this school and other schools by me, who can not believe how I have been treated)
    I am now a specialist teacher with a reduced workload and act as relief teacher for the school, still full time.
    Principals not happy with me and I discover I am pregnant.

    I am waaaayyyyyy to scared and intimidated to tell them yet, especially the principal...I had to ring in sick today, worst morning sickness ever and the principal gave me attitude that it's the first day back after a long weekend.

    I am not on a fixed term contract only a one year one and I completely think the principal hates me.

    i am due at the end of October, start of November ....can they pressure me to leave half way through the year? I want to work as long as possible as this was unplanned and we are broke and really need the money.

    Help me with advice and my rights please, am I screwed?

  2. #2
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    Sweetpez - firstly congrats on your BFP!!

    I too am a new graduate teacher and OMG I feel for you so much being in the position you are in. Ive been TTC but have taken a couple of months off to settle in to my job and even with fertility issues Im still paranoid of getting pregnant too early in the school year!! (even though the chances for me are slim to none!)

    I am also on contract but to be honest Im not sure if they can (or cant) terminate you early due to pregnancy - Id say no they cant as that would be discrimination. Are you a member of the AEU? Id be going to them for advice first off. What state are you in? Does the Education Department in your state have information available on your working conditions? I know here in SA its all on their website but it would vary state to state. If I were you I would hold off saying anything to anyone until you have gathered info about your entitlements etc.

    Also, as a new graduate you (should) be entitled to extra assistance during your first 12 months. Again, this may vary state to state but I know here in SA we get a lighter teaching load etc to help with settling in the first 12 months but it still sucks if you have a non-supportive school.

    I hope things work out ok for you,

  3. #3
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    Join the AEU! I'd say that to all grads, not just you
    In Vic, you have to finish work at 34 weeks unless you have a medical certificate stating you are fit to continue.
    As a new grad, you should be on a reduced workload and have a mentor in the school that assists you (again in Vic). Check out the VIT website.
    Good luck and take care.

  4. #4
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    Firstly congrats!!
    Im an AP at a primary school. They cannot force you to leave if you are in contract except for maternity leave where you will finish at a certain number of weeks, check this with the AEU. They also cannot discriminate for you being pregnant. Be honest with your principal about your pregnancy when you feel comfortable, you don't have to but it should help them in understanding your situation, it happens all the time in schools! Any half decent principal will support you with this.
    As for your grade changing although not ideal for you a principal can make changes like this as required, don't assume that it's because of you though.
    I always think being up front and communicating works well in schools and definitely join the AEU they will have the most up to date advise for your particular contact/state/situation.
    Last edited by babyla; 13-03-2012 at 14:09.

  5. #5
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    I am also a (newer) graduate teacher and I found out I was pregnant 3 months into a year long contract, everyone took the news well but they didnt renew at the end of the year because I was due in late Jan. Worked well for me, went on paid parental leave for 4 months and then back into casual teaching I do miss the school though. I am not 1st year out, I was 2nd year and it was baby #4 so it really didn't affect my work.

  6. #6
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    You need to contact fair work Australia. You do have rights. If you are in the union that's a good starting point.
    They can't reduce your workload either without due process etc. they can't fire you for pregnancy or terminate your contract. If they did they would be liable for damages too.
    First contact is union or fair work. Get all the facts you need. Then approach with an advocate or support if you're worried.
    Google fair work for their number.

  7. #7
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    Hi, I am not an au member yet, although I have asked the representative three times at my school for the form, I can not sign up online as I do not have a school computer yet (on the waiting list)and I need some reference number on my payslips.

    I believe I do have a mentor but I didn't meet her or find out her name till after the month where the principal decided to swap me, she has not really done much to build a relationship with me yet, so I feel uncomfortable talking to her about this.

    I absolutly hate the school I am at, it is very clicky and my class was stacked in advance by the other teachers in my year level. I know the grade below went to the principal with my class list last year before I started and said it wasn't a fair class list for a grad, let alone any teacher.

    I do not want to return, I can not wait to get away from the clickyness and btchyness of the teachers. I just want to stay on till I am about 7 months and have some time to save some money.

    I am not sure I want to work as a teacher in the future after the way I have been treated anyway.

  8. #8
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    Contact the AEU (Vic details)
    1800 013 379
    melbourne@aeuvic.asn.au

    Get your business manager at school to print off your payslip (don't get me started on Edupay).

    And speak to the principal about lack of mentoring. If not comfortable with this, contact the VIT.

    PM me if you want, I'm a secondary teacher but might be able to help in some way with your classroom stuff.

  9. #9
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    Just want to say that i hope you get through this ordeal! I am (well, was) a first year graduate teacher last year and couldn't find any contract work and ended up doing CRT despite really needing the money. I found out later that i was pregnant anyway, so I think it was a blessing in a way. I'm due in a few weeks now so haven't been working this year, but had the worst morning sickness (bed ridden etc) for months at the beginning, so there would have been no way I would have survived first year teaching.
    I agree, get advice from the Union, and then just be honest with your Principal so it will be easier to take days off/go to appointments etc, especially since you don't want to go back. I totally understand that you may not even want to go back to teaching too, its really a rough career. Fingers crossed for you x

  10. #10
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    I am a secondary teacher and I have been teaching for 10 years and I just wanted to encourage you not to turn your back on teaching so soon. I know some schools can be absolutely awful but trust me, the job gets easier the longer you stay. You've come so far, I really do hope you go back to teaching after you have your bubba.
    In regards to how you've been treated, your principal cannot dismiss you because you're pregnant, it's against the law. Call fair work australia - they should be able to advise you about what to do next.
    A baby is a blessing and I hope you work everything out. X


 

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