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Maternity leave: school refusing to include me in September staffing

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by froggy29400, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. I've posted this in "pregnancy" already, but it might make more sense here!
    I have just started my maternity leave. From September I will be employed part-time (0.6 FTE) at my school, for various reasons, the main one being to spend more time with my baby. Obviously I won't go back to work in September, but a bit later in the year, probably January (it all depends on finances!)
    I have requested to know my timetable (not specific classes necessarily, but at least the days I'll be working) as I have to confirm childcare arrangements by the end of the summer, but my Head is refusing and says I'll get it closer to my return, as they won't write a timetable for me until then! My hours are going to be covered internally so apparently that's the reason they aren't able to give me a timetable. The timetable written for September will be "the most appropriate model for staff who will be teaching in September". Apparently, just in case some staff leave between September and when I return they won't allocate anything specific to me either... Why should I suffer from potential staff movement?
    Is this acceptable? As far as I'm aware, despite being on maternity leave I am still an employee of the school so have the same rights than any employee working there in 2011-2012.
    Another thing is that they keep saying how they can't guarantee the number of days I'll be working. All women who have gone part time in the years I've worked at the school have gone down to a specific number of working days (0.4: 2 days, 0.8: 4 days etc), not just hours, but it seems they won't accept that for me and they could make me work 5 days! That's ridiculous as it would make no difference whatsoever to my current situation, and I wouldn't have more time with my baby + would have to pay for extra childcare! I thought the Head had a duty of Work-life balance?
    Are they simply being unreasonable?
    Thanks in advance.
  2. DaisysLot

    DaisysLot Senior commenter

    From what you say it sounds as though the organisation of your mat cover means that there is no timetable as the head has said - and to be fair, until they know for sure when you are returning it seems illogical to put anything firmly in place as it's being covered internally.

    As a new mother to have the right to request flexible working i.e going part time, but the school does not have to accept your request, neither do they have to specify how those reduced hours will be spread across the working week.
    At the moment, I would forget about it and enjoy your maternity leave. Lots might change in terms of staffing before you go back which would mean that teaching allocation, hours and timetables might all get thrown upside down before your return - and hopefully to your benefit.
  3. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    I don't understand why you've arranged your p/t return already when you have only just started your ML.
    Surely you should be staying on f/t for the moment and thus get your Maternity pay based on your f/t salary. You then negotiate the p/t return at a later date and make it conditional on working the minimum number of days.
    It's unrealistic to be getting a timetable when you are so far away from returning to work but you've juimped the gun arranging the p/t contract change IMO.
  4. - first of all, I haven't "arranged" p/t but was pushed into it to avoid compulsary redundancy. I wasn't able to negociate anything...
    - secondly you are incorrect, my maternity leave is based on my current F/T salary, it doesn't get affected in any way by my future reduction of hours
  5. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    I'm glad to hear it. I assumed you were going p/t from September as you wanted your return to work timetable at the beginning of the school year.
  6. tomjones79

    tomjones79 New commenter

    I'm staggered you've been pushed into it and if you couldn't accept the new terms, would be constructive dismissal.

    If the terms are reasonable for you that's lucky for them, as the head would be on very dangerous grounds with this.

    If they go through a redundancy process, it must be done through a long, defined and fair process, it sounds like this was not.
  7. Sorry maybe me using the wrong words... There was a long and stressful process involving redundancy (which is stressful for anyone going through it, but seemed even worse with the hormones!!!). It was clear from the start it wasn't a full-time post that needed to be cut, but "some hours". An advert for the "spare hours" was put in the TES a while back, before the final decision of redundancy, assuming I would be gone (although the excuse given by the Head was "to meet recruitment deadline"). I felt pushed into making a decision about accepting the part-time job as I was days away from starting my maternity leave, and really didn't want to be without a job at the end of it. I was given a (short) deadline to accept the P/T job (or indeed accept to be made redundant).

  8. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    As far as I'm aware you can't be made redubdant whilst on ML. I stand to be corrected if I've got that wrong.
  9. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    Of course you can, provided appropriate procedures have been followed. The person on ML might be the one who should be made redundant - and if so, why should being on ML protect them?
    You cannot be made redundant simply because you're on ML - but that's a different legal position.

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