A friend of mine is employed in a pre-school in a community centre - two and a half hours a day, four days a week - the length of time that the pre-school is open. A management committee is responsible for all that happens in the centre including the preschool. The preschool is funded by the HSE. On Saturday last a committee member came to my friend's door. The committee member who also happens to be a neighbour, initially started asking questions/looking for opinions about the general cleanliness of the preschool but ended up finding fault with her work specifically her work in relation to the cleaning aspect of her duties. It came across as a personal criticism. My friend got upset at this attack and before the day was out she contacted her preschool leader to say that she couldn't work any longer in a situation where her private life was constantly being invaded. The preschool leader had many times in the past rang her after work discussing aspects of the day and also aspects of my friend's personal life. The visit by the neighbour/committee member was the last straw. In the course of her telephone conversation with the preschool leader she stated that she couldn't handle all this and face back to work to a situation like this. The preschool leader read into this that she was verbally handing in her notice. She was probably prompted into saying that she was handing in her notice. In her upset state she cannot remember exactly how this 'verbal resignation' came to pass. On Monday morning she got ready for work as usual but before leaving for work she received a phone call asking her if she was coming into work that day and she was asked to work her notice. At work the chairperson of the committee handed her a letter asking her for 'written notice of her verbal notice' for their records. On Monday evening she decided to ring to chairperson to tell her that she had acted hastily/over reacted on the previous Saturday and having thought about it over the weekend she was withdrawing her notice and as a consequence wouldn't be providing anything in writing. She explained to the chairperson the upset that the call to the door had caused her and that her actions were as a result of that. She was told by the chairperson that the decision would rest with the committee who were meeting on Wednesday. The committee met on Wednesday. She received a phone call late Wednesday evening when she was told that they weren't accepting the withdrawal of her verbal notice and again she was asked for written confirmation of her notice. She doesn't work on Fridays and is unsure whether she should attend work on Tuesday morning next. She has keys to the facility but wasn't asked to return them. Her contract states that she is required to give at least four weeks' notice in writing of her intention to terminate her employment with the Community Pre-school. Her contact also states that the managemnet committee will give at least four weeks' notice in writing of termination of her employment. No formal allegation of misconduct has been made. Can an 'off duty' phone call where she verbally said she would give up her job be enforced? She was in an upset state and was cornered into stating that. There may be an ulterior motive here as the Pre-school may not have its funding renewed for the coming year due to insufficient enrolment and it may be in the best interests of the management committee to see an employee walking away rather than being made redundant. What should she do next Tuesday morning? Does she have to resign? What should she/can she do?