Principal’s Office Calls to Discuss Unknown Issue
A teacher is called into the principal’s office to discuss an unknown issue. The teacher contacts the provincial office for advice and possible representation.
The counsellor tells the teacher to ascertain the purpose of the meeting. The nature of the meeting will determine the teacher’s course of actions.
The Principal of a school could ask to speak to a teacher about a myriad of issues related to daily routines, student progress and curriculum related matters. Most of these meetings are not negative and not evaluative. However, it is because the majority of discussions with principals are innocuous that many teachers are caught off guard when a serious issue arises. The key to dealing with these situations is to find out the nature of the meeting. It is important to be cooperative, however, keep in mind that a response can be provided at a later time or date. Always seek advice if you are uncertain about a situation. The reasons for the meeting will dictate the direction the teacher should take.
If the meeting is concerning a police, CAS or school board investigation, the teacher is advised to contact the local OECTA Unit immediately. If you cannot get in touch with your local OECTA unit, contact OECTA’s Provincial Office at 1-800-268-7230.
If the Principal simply states that he/she wants to discuss a few issues concerning a student or a parent, the teacher should listen carefully and avoid making any statements that could lead to self-incrimination. If necessary, the teacher can ask that the meeting be adjourned and the teacher can provide a response after seeking his/her advice from OECTA.
Should the teacher feel the need to have an OECTA representative at the meeting, it is his/her right to do so. Teachers are also advised to review the Be Wary, Be Wise video and accompanying resource materials if they are uncertain as to how to conduct themselves.