Failure to Supervise

Failure to supervise puts you in danger

It is not possible to supervise all students in your classes 100 percent of the time. Invariably, there will be times that require you to direct your attention elsewhere. However, there are some ways in which you can prevent being accused of improperly supervising your class.

Here are some tips:

  • Try to be in visual contact with your class as much as possible, especially when you step out of the room to meet with an individual student or staff member.
  • If you need to leave the room to run to the office or use the restroom, be sure that you have contacted another nearby staff member who will watch your class in your absence.
  • If you teach subject areas such as lab sciences, tech/industrial arts, physical education, or any other area in which student safety is of greater concern than in a regular classroom, keep in mind that the standards of supervision are higher for you.
  • If you send students out of the classroom to work on projects, be sure that they are clear as to what your expectations are for their behavior. Try to only send students who have demonstrated to you that they will behave responsibly. Be aware of equipment or other situations that might tempt students to get into trouble or cause them physical harm.
  • If the physical environment of your classroom, or the existence of other factors, causes you to feel that you are unable to adequately supervise your students, it’s important to meet with your building principal to resolve these concerns as soon as possible. Document your concerns in writing to your building administrator and keep a copy for yourself. If you need help with this process, please let the VEA office know.

Following these guidelines will likely prevent any problems from happening, but if you find yourself faced with an accusation that you have failed to properly supervise your class, especially if the injury of a student is involved, contact the VEA office immediately.