Now Under New Management!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

HCT's 'kangaroo court' style of management

We received another tale of HCT management’s spineless and unprincipled approach to its teaching staff a few days back. I’ve just given it a little light editing, to protect the innocent and thrust the guilty a little further into the spotlight. The facts, however, remain as they were initially written.

*******

If Teacher X had been living in a civilised Western country he would probably have won a claim for unfair dismissal, after the HCT college he worked for sacked him following several contrived complaints from his pampered Emirati students.

Teacher X had worked for HCT for almost ten years before he was dismissed in June last year for gross misconduct. The teacher claims that the complaints made against him were wholly unfair, and that the college conflated several allegations against him into a single charge of gross misconduct, even though he had previously been cleared of two of the allegations.

The first allegation of misconduct related to an incident that happened in September 2008, when a disruptive 17-year-old Emirati boy alleged that Teacher X pushed a desk at him. The teacher claimed that he merely moved the table to make more room in the aisle, and that the boy made a dramatic gesture of being pushed to the floor by the table.

The disruptive boy lodged a complaint with the HCT management, who ‘investigated’ the case, but the teacher was found to be completely innocent of any wrongdoing.

Later the same year Teacher X was involved in another accusation of apparent misdemeanour. After escorting a disruptive pupil outside the classroom, another student came out of the class and tapped him on the shoulder. Teacher X naturally assumed it was an attempt to provoke him, and shouted at the boy to get back in class.

The boy decided to report the ‘incident’, and the teacher agreed to apologise verbally. The college management also appeared to consider the matter closed, and made no big deal of the allegation.

However, three months later another boy alleged that Teacher X had pushed him against a classroom wall at the end of a class. Although there were no witnesses, the boy's word was taken as fact by the management, and a verbal warning was given ... to the teacher.

One week later, Teacher X had to physically restrain the same boy after he tried to enter a room in which his friend was doing an assessed test. Teacher X stood in the doorway to block the boy’s entrance, and when the boy tried to duck under him, the teacher pushed him back.

Once more there was a complaint made against the teacher, this time for ‘assault’, and the matter was looked into by the college management.

Teacher X claimed that the other students in the classroom were asked to make statements about the incident, but, quite strangely, he wasn't. In his opinion, the whole procedure was a farce, purely designed to effect a dismissal. His case was ‘investigated’ by the college management with a clear view to making Teacher X appear guilty without bothering to ascertain the facts.

The HCT management cravenly rolled all of the allegations together, even though two of them had been proven to be false, and produced a fabricated and conflated charge of ‘gross misconduct’. In summary, the teacher was fired without even being given the right to defend himself.

This is the sort of treatment you can expect at HCT. If the management feel that you are making too much work for them, they will contrive to have you sacked. They are not interested in discovering the facts of a case, just in hushing it up as swiftly as possible. They will perceive the teacher as being the cause of the trouble, rather than the students, and will lose no time in getting you out the door. Nobody will offer any support, as other managers and faculty are scared of being seen to support a ‘lame duck’ – even if you have an unblemished nine-year record!

The HCT culture is one of FEAR, and this stretches to every corner of every college. The students can smell this fear, and some of the younger ones will exploit it for their own benefit, as we have seen in this case.

The message is therefore very clear - Avoid HCT!

29 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sounds like one of the stories from RAK to me. Didn't The Claw have a role to play in this one? Sends shivers down my back anyway!

Anonymous said...

It's Dr Evil himself, showing us the size of his salary!
http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-news/education/debt-worry-over-federal-universities

Anonymous said...

Wonder if Dr. Evil realized he would appear next to that article...love it!

Poodle Pelham said...

Haa!!! Loved it to DEATH!!! Big salary rises for the bloated HCT leaders and directors, but sweet FA for the troops on the ground.

No changes or surprises there, then ...

Anonymous said...

Oh and why hasn't Dr. Evil made it to the Hall of Infamy yet?...surely all of the media coverage he gets has made him notorious...I would hereby wish to nominate him for a position in the Hall of Infamy...(whoever is in charge of these things, you can have the honour of the first punch...)

Suede Oasis said...

No probs! Just email me a picture of the dastardly doctor, and I'll add him to the punchinthefacebook gallery!

Anonymous said...

Oops - here he is!

http://www.punchinthefacebook.com/punch/sharjah-womens-college/farid-ohan

Smack Dr Farid Ohan in the face AS MUCH AS YOU WANT!

Can we get 'Dr Evil' to number one by next week? Yes We CAN!!

Anonymous said...

I'm quite surprised it has taken the long suffering victims of the 'faridathon' speeches this long to give the beloved doc. a mention.
But then again, things do move slowly in sharjah.
Is it true that the only way you can get out of the Sharjah colleges is 'feet first'?

Khalifa Exile said...

Dr Evil is currently resting at the number 3 spot in punchinthefacebook.com - a mere two places behind ADMC's much-loathed Dr Simon Jones!

Anonymous said...

What's really needed is that nasty 'dean' at Sharjah Women's (Anne Brabazon)on the Punchinthefacebook. She could definitely be outpunched by the other lot.

Anonymous said...

Why is nothing up here about the Foundations Program collapsing and/or the recent news (from National Neswpaper etc.) about budgets, and senior management in HCT getting pay rises above that stipulated? Just in from eslcafe.com is that UGRU is going to continue despite the move to allocate students to the nearest HCT campus..aren't these issues more relevant?

HAPPY NEW YEAR :)

Suede Oasis said...

They certainly are, Anonymous, so please feel free to go ahead and enlighten us all. Be pro-active - that's the way to go!

Meanwhile, Ms Brabazon shall be added to the HCT Hall of Shame on punchinthefacebook.com very soon!

Anonymous said...

Little Timmy Smith (the Napoleon of Al Ain) should be there too. I'll personally get him a few hundred times.

Suede Oasis said...

Ah, your wish is my command, Anon! Watch this space soon for news of a whole new cohort of HCT Goon Squad members to join punchinthefacebook.com!

Anonymous said...

Errr I think she's a Greek-language blogger really. Google Translate didn't work too well, but it doesn't look bad.
http://johnny-and-me.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Is it true now Suede's blackmail attempts have been rebuffed, he's reduced to eating domestic pets in pubs for money? He'd certainly never earn anything for his english teaching.

Suede Oasis said...

Yes, it's absolutely true. I never earned a cent/penny/dirham for my teaching - I did it all for love!

But I do object to the accusations of pussy-chewing and mongrel-munching in public houses. I'm just not that sort of guy! (Veggie actually...)

Anonymous said...

It wasn't pussies you were chewing in HCT, was it? The word was you always had a few special students who you were always pleased to see. Indeed, you cared so much about their education, you'd go down on bended knees to help them. That's probably why you are lurking in pub toilets these days.

Anonymous said...

Ooh, the SHAME, the SCANDAL!! Is this all true, SO?! I think we should be told, and SOON!

Suede Oasis said...

Like I said before, I'm veggie - no sausage-jockey antics for me!

Anonymous said...

http://www.arktimes.com/ArkansasBlog/archives/2010/10/29/henderson-president-applies-at-asu

Dr. Mark Drummond leaving UAE ????

also Did he remarry a young Thai girl ?

Kampirada

Anonymous said...

http://m1014.photobucket.com/albumview/albums/laneyray_photos/Mark%20Drummond/MarkandKampirada2.jpg.html
Dr. Drummonds new Wife

Anonymous said...

http://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=2&ved=0CBwQFjAB&url=http%3A%2F%2Fm1014.photobucket.com%2Falbums%2Flaneyray_photos%2FMark%2520Drummond%2F&rct=j&q=mark%20drummond%20kampirada&ei=3so4TcOPDYik8QOitdm6CA&usg=AFQjCNF1olUnr7FFOBp17oCyl4A3KKZqlQ

Anonymous said...

Nicely Clintonesque response Suede

Anonymous said...

Shades of 'Ugandan negotiations' I feel, eh?!

Anonymous said...

Meanwhile there's this piece of interesting info from The National:

The FNC report noted that the Higher Colleges of Technology, the largest federal university, gave pay increases to senior directors that exceeded its own salary limits, but no rises to its academic staff. Even this meant it ran a loss, the report noted.

The Colleges said they awarded the increases to senior directors with many years' service, based on a university decision not to limit their salaries.


Check it out here:
http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-news/education/zayed-university-staff-to-get-2-per-cent-pay-increase

Anonymous said...

So while the bosses of HCT were telling us we could expect no merit pay and a reduced annual increment, they were awarding themselves thousands of dirhams in increases?!

Absolutely sickening - but not surprising at all!

Anonymous said...

Hmm Tim Smith and his henchmen

Anonymous said...

Hmm Tim Smith and his henchmen