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Redundancy Procedures

Discussion in 'Governors' started by anonmyme, Mar 14, 2012.

  1. The school has to make a number of staff redundant. We made mistakes last time this happened which caused unnecessary upset to those involved. We have staff off with w/r stress, long-term illness and maternity leave. The LA has advised that the latter cannot be selected - this is disputed by the head - who is right?
     
  2. The school has to make a number of staff redundant. We made mistakes last time this happened which caused unnecessary upset to those involved. We have staff off with w/r stress, long-term illness and maternity leave. The LA has advised that the latter cannot be selected - this is disputed by the head - who is right?
     
  3. DM

    DM New commenter

    Why bother with redundancies? Just round up the sick and vulnerable, take them out the back and shoot them.
     
  4. We are going through the redundancy process at the moment and we have been advised by HR that all those you mention above are in the redundancy 'pot'. This has also been accepted by the unions involved.

     
  5. lardylegs

    lardylegs Occasional commenter

    Please bear in mind that the unions will be involved. I really think you would do best to listen to your HR department and not your HT?
     
  6. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    If you search online you will find many sites on this subject, all the ones I've looked at are very clear that staff on maternity leave can be selected for redundancy as long as fair procedure that does not discriminate against them is followed. What you cannot do is select someone for redundancy <u>because</u> they are on maternity leave as pregnancy/maternity is a 'protected characteristic' under the Equality Act.
    What your own school's policy says would also need to be taken into account.
    Challenge your HR department's advice by referring them to sites such as these and asking them to justify their coments in the light of what they say - the first is an official government website
    http://www.businesslink.gov.uk/bdotg/action/detail?itemId=1080903562&type=RESOURCES
    http://blogs.findlaw.co.uk/solicitor/2010/04/redundancy-during-pregnancy-or-maternity-leave.html


     
  7. staxis

    staxis New commenter

    Let's turn this around for a second. If your redundancy pot consisted of three people: one long term sick, one pregnant and one fit and working. If your HR advice is correct then the only one who could be considered for redundancy is the one working. This is plainly unfair on that person and any union worth its salt would fight tooth and nail against the decision.
    Clearly, long term sickness or pregnancy cannot be grounds for redundancy but surely they should not be excluded from the pot. I suggest you go back to HR and get some better advice.
     
  8. <h3>Redundancy or dismissal during maternity leave</h3>It is automatically unfair and automatic sex discrimination for your employer to select you for redundancy or dismiss you for a reason connected with:
    • maternity leave
    • birth or pregnancy
    • paternity leave
    • parental leave
    • time off for dependants
    Your employer can make you redundant while you are on maternity leave if they can fairly justify their choice. For example, your employer might close the section of their business that you normally work in and make all employees in that section redundant. Then your employer can make you redundant as well.
    However, if your employer makes staff cuts across the company, they cannot make you redundant because you are on or are about to take maternity leave.
    If you are made redundant whilst on Statutory Maternity Leave then you have special rights. You have the right to be offered any suitable alternative job in the company. This is even if there are other employees that might be more suitable for the job. If you are offered a new job, you are still entitled to the four-week trial period, which should start when you return from Statutory Maternity Leave.
    If you are made redundant or dismissed during your Statutory Maternity Leave your employer must give you a written statement explaining the reasons for their decision. You should receive your normal notice period or pay in lieu of notice and redundancy pay, if you are entitled to receive them.
    This is from the Directgov website which is the government speaking therefore will be reflecting current law.
     
  9. Let's turn that on its head: what about the teachers who work hard EVERYDAY, who turn in come hell or high water - who volunteer, work the corridors, teach to a high standard? Why should you accept their redundancy more willingly than someone who costs the school double: their pay and the supply teacher who usually covers their lessons. What about their classes who see a different face every week - whose books don't get marked? In times of plenty compassion is easy- but why should a non-attendee have precedence over a hard worker who tends to their wounds in the evenings and is religiously at the chalk face the next day? Yes, of course, one shouldn't be nominated because of maternity, temporary ill health etc: but likewise, one shouldn't be excluded on that basis either.

    That we don't want redundancies is a given, but if push comes to shove, why should some be excluded from the 'pot' because they happen to be ill, pregnant, whatever - harsh, but so is life for thousands of public sector workers.

    All I advocate is that governors understand the rules and apply them evenly.
     
  10. ref: DM
     
  11. grrmummy

    grrmummy New commenter

    As I understand it, it is the post not the person that is being made redundant. And this is where GB's can be seen to have acted legitimately and in the best interests of the school.
    Having sat on one such (first) selection panel last year as governors we had no idea what the personal circumstances of the teaching staff were: it was purely that the GB had to make a strategic decision based on surplus capacity. This sounds harsh but the reality was that some departments had teachers enormously overstretched (which is not fair) whereas other departments had teachers with surplus teaching hours (who were not always able/willing to provide cover elesewhere) because there was not sufficient (student) demand for some subject options. In effect this supply/demand issue brought about the decision to rationalise some posts and create others more in keeping with the strategic plans for the future direction of the school.
    So in my view being on maternity leave or long term sick etc is a secondary consideration - you cannot make someone redundant because of these circumstances but you can make someone redundant despite them.
    This is interesting though and I would be interested to hear other thoughts...
     
  12. DM

    DM New commenter

    Unfortunately, as I read your opening post, I imagined you rubbing your hands together in glee at this golden opportunity to rid yourself of all the 'dead wood' in your school with scant regard to decorum or procedure. I may have got you wrong. Time will tell.
     

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