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How to word it ?


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#1 ma non troppo

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 11:48

If you were contacted by email by someone you did not want to teach, how would you reply?
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#2 maggiemay

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 11:51

Do you know whether this person is likely to know any of your existing students ? 


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#3 ma non troppo

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 11:55

I am not sure. It's possible.
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#4 maggiemay

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 12:09

Hmm.  I would consider ‘ I regret I am not currently taking on more students’,  or  ‘I do not currently have spaces’. 

 

On the other hand, if your students know you are looking for more, that might not work. 


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#5 Norway

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 12:15

"I do not currently have spaces" sounds fine to me. Even if they do know a current student, no one can possibly know who has joined or left recently, or how your life may have changed which could affect how many you could take.


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#6 ma non troppo

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 13:12

I'm just a bit concerned as this person can be a bit persistent. Oh well, no places it is. What if they ask to be put on a waiting list?!
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#7 Latin pianist

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 13:15

Maybe just be honest and say you're not the right teacher for them.
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#8 ten left thumbs

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 13:23

I'm just a bit concerned as this person can be a bit persistent. Oh well, no places it is. What if they ask to be put on a waiting list?!

You're not doing one.


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#9 maggiemay

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 14:34

Or your waiting list is so long that you’re not currently adding to it  :-) 


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#10 HelenVJ

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 15:10

Is there another teacher that you'd feel able to pass them on to? 'I only have limited availability and at the moment I think Mrs X might be a better fit for you' (?) If you're able to give a reason, without being too blunt or offensive, then that'd be a bonus. I'd be wary of the 'no availabilty/waiting list' approach if you are in fact taking on new students.


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#11 zwhe

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 15:12

Could you be specific - you're only taking on beginners/ teenagers etc as you like a balance/want to specialise?


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#12 Ligneo Fistula

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 15:53

As a learner, I would prefer a teacher afford me the most basic of courtesies of being honest as to why he or she would not wish to have me as pupil.  If there is nothing sinister underpinning your reasoning, e.g. contravening the Equality Act 2010, and have articulated this clearly and logically then surely you have nothing to worry about. 

 

The best outcome would to be constructive: explain why you cannot teach them and provide them with alternative solutions, such as another possible teacher or changes to their behaviour that would allow you to take them on as a pupil.

 

In another thread, a teacher was going on about music teachers not being treated seriously as other Professions.  To me, you do yourself no favours by acting unprofessionally: one of the core characteristics of a professional is integrity; being honest. Condoning and advocating blatantly lying about lack of spaces and waiting lists is not acting professionally, quite the opposite.


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#13 edgmusic

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 16:30

'I'm afraid I have no availability at the moment and the situation is unlikely to change in the near future'

No need to mention spaces etc.

Don't apologise, don't give reasons, just state the situation.
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#14 BadStrad

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 16:50

Unless you've been sticking up fliers all over town seeking new pupils then I'd go with:-

Thank you for your enquiry. Unfortunately I am not looking to expand my teaching practice at this time.

Kind regards.
MNT

I totally disagree that explaining your reasons is a must. If, as you say this person is "persistent" any reason you give is likely to be used as "evidence against you." Ie it can be turned to their advantage or used as a bargaining chip. Eg. - "Yes, I know I'm X (insert name of undesirable behaviour) but I promise I'll behave." Then the teacher needs to defend their position or take on the unwanted pupil.

Logic has little to do with it when you're telling someone you don't want them around. If people were able to take such criticisms the subterfuge wouldn't be required.

Put it another way - shop keepers have the right to refuse to serve someone (as long as it not because of a protected characteristic) and don't have to give a reason so why should a music teacher have to give a reason?
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#15 violinlove

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Posted 08 November 2019 - 16:55

What is the reason for not wanting to teach them?

 

I wouldn't lie and say you have no places if you do. The person might find out.

 

If it's a personal reason you could just say you think another teacher might be better suited and give a couple of names.


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