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Training Days

Discussion in 'Workplace dilemmas' started by fellside, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. I've recently been told I have 3 inset days I must go to as I work 3 days a week an haven't attended any this year, however all of the planned training days fall on a day which I don't work. I have 2 children who I cannot get childcare for on those days, this seems to be falling on deaf ears, I'm not being awkward we have no family close by, the nursery is full and my husband is self employed and can't close for 3 days. What is the solution?
  2. I've recently been told I have 3 inset days I must go to as I work 3 days a week an haven't attended any this year, however all of the planned training days fall on a day which I don't work. I have 2 children who I cannot get childcare for on those days, this seems to be falling on deaf ears, I'm not being awkward we have no family close by, the nursery is full and my husband is self employed and can't close for 3 days. What is the solution?
  3. fantastischfish

    fantastischfish Established commenter

    If you've only just been told this then it's bad planning on the part of the management. I don't understand how they have overlooked the PD days that you are supposed to work a proportion of pro rata. If you cannot get childcare, is there anyway your children could come to school with you for at least one of the days, if they are old enough?
    The only other option is to offer to make up the time on other days, if possible, or simply chalk it up to bad planning and make sure that it's planned better next time.
  4. I assume the school notified everyone of the training days before the start of the school year? They have to do this by law!
    If they did, then you should have been aware of them. You should also know that you have to do 3 training days as that is the number of days you work. It doesn't matter if they fall on your normal working days or not. In that case, you don't have a leg to stand on - your salary includes the proportion of training days you are contracted to work - so you don't work them for nothing.
    If,however, you have not been notified of them at the start of the year, then you have grounds for refusing to attend if they are not on your normal days of work. You will lose a day's pay for the adys you don't attend though!
  5. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Part-time teachers cannot be expected to work on their non-working days, inset or not, notified in advance or not. As I understand it, the only exception would be if the contract specified this, for example if it said "working Thursday and Friday plus any training days". It is good practice for them to be invited, and supply pay offered where relevant. But you can't be made to - you might work elsewhere on those days (in fact you do, but somehow parenting isn't seen as a commitment).
    If they've put all the training days on Mondays, and you don't work Mondays, you will almost certainly find that you've worked more than the pro rata quantity of teaching days, so the bit about you losing pay is rubbish.

  6. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    Paragraph 168 of the STPCD has this to say on the subject:
    Tends to suggest that it's entirely up to you.
  7. Given that they have put all of the training days on your "off" days...
    have they therefore got more teaching days on your "on" days? (ie, is it
    worth adding up all of the days you teach and compare it with the
    appropriate proportion for a full timer) Obviously this is harder to identify if you
    don't work full days....
    It might not solve your problem, but if you are teaching more days than your proportion requires, then you have an argument for not doing even more unpaid work! (though this won't work if they are offering to pay you!)
    I thought the presumption that part timers should attend parents evenings/meetings/training in proportion to their contracted hours was coupled with advice that part timers could not be expected to attend on days they do not work - but I don't know whether this means you can refuse to do this, or just that you must be paid if you do....

  8. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    That's exactly what the STPCD says.
  9. Thanks for the confirmation... I was writing my message while your one went up...
  10. fantastischfish

    fantastischfish Established commenter

    I think it's pretty unfair that part time teacher can effectively do NO training days at all based on their part-time status and could effectively not have to do any parents' evenings etc if they fall on non-working days. My understanding was that PT teacher do these things pro-rata. After all, their teaching responsibilities remain the same and they must meet all of the same standards as full time teachers, thus attending parents' evenings etc are part of those responsibilities.
    On the flipside, I also believe that other duties should be reduced pro rata as well where PT teachers end up doing MORE than their fair share due to being part time (e.g. doing break duty once per week when working 0.4 means you do duty 50% of the time, where full time staff only do it 1 day out of five).
  11. I agree, and in an ideal world, a school would have training days/parents evenings etc spread evenly throughout the days of the week, so that by attending only on the days they work, part timers attend the appropriate proportion. The problem only arises when a school does not arrange their calendar in this way...
  12. chriszwinter1

    chriszwinter1 New commenter

    Paragraph 168 contains the words "by <u>mutual</u> agreement". That allows for flexibility, but it has to work both ways.
  13. I have the opposite problem in that all the INSET days at my school are on Fridays (my non-teaching day) and no training has been arranged - apart from one Monday, when I have been asked to provide the training!. This means my job-share has paid holiday for the Fridays. The HT maintains it wasn't delilberate...
  14. Seriously - your HT has given all the staff the INSET days as paid holiday. You're avin a larf.
  15. Except me.... trust me I'm not 'larfin' !!!!!!!
  16. What my post didn't make clear is that all the part time teachers in my school, of which there are many, are contracted to attend training days. If they work 60% of the week, they do 60% training days, and the pay for this is included in their salary. If they wish to do additional days, they can and get paid additionally for them. The days are always mixed up so they are not on the same day, and planned in to ensure the majority of staff can attend on one of their normal working days.
    This is difficult to organise, but not impossible. All staff are notified of the annual calendar before the start of the Summer holidays - so they can plan childcare etc well in advance if required.
    They are also contracted to do parents evenings - although we don't all do it on the same day so they can fit theirs in on their working days.

  17. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    As I said, the exception is where the school has specified the inclusion of training days in the contract - which is very sensible of your school. Varying the day is sensible, too, and hopefully avoids the problem of a teacher teaching in two schools finding they can't actually meet both contracts.

    To whoever moaned about part-timers getting out of parents' evenings, I don't think it's as simple as that. Where classes are split, usually the balance is restored somehow: one teacher did the parents' evening, so the other does more of the written reports, for instance.
    If you are the only teacher teaching a group, not doing parents' evening leaves a gap in home-school communication. I suspect it would not be unreasonable of the head to direct a teacher (particularly of a core subject) to communicate with those parents at another time, perhaps by telephone or e-mail, or by providing a colleague with written notes prior to the evening. I'd rather do the parents' evening (and always have always opted to do so).
  18. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    Totally agree, but not so much because they should be saying how wonderful we are, but to protect (future) colleagues who might not be able to be as flexible. Sometimes heads have been completely unaware that their part-timer has been doing far more than they had to, and have then expected a new part-timer to do the same. I think they've sometimes had quite a shock when the newcomer has pointed to the rules and got their union involved. Even where the rules are accepted, it must be hard if you're the only part-timer saying no.
    I've been lucky enough to work part-time in schools that treated part-timers well, and there was a lot of common sense give-and-take. I think it helped, in the first, that the head's wife was a part-time teacher elsewhere! Some part-timers were more flexible than others, and I don't think that was ever a problem.
  19. Try to be rational. If the three days represent 3 of a total of 5 inset days in the school year, you should probably be present since it reflects your 0.6 timetable. I can see a couple of ways out:
    1) State / explain that you can not attend (do not go into details) and that you are prepared to take 3 days of 'no pay' to reflect your non-attendance or
    2) Suggest that, next year, you attend three additional inset days, to make up for the missed ones this year.
    Would either of these work?

  20. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    There is unlikely to be any reason for accepting any deduction of pay. The chances are that if the number of training days falling on your working days is below the pro rata quota, the number of teaching days is above. In years when the LA assigns term dates whch spread evenly across the days of the week, any part-timer will be working the right total number of days. (This year there are only 194 days, so there's a little bit of inevitable rounding error: you should be working 116.4 days total on a 0.6 contract.)
    Just state that you are unable to attend as they do not fall on your working days. You might want to let them know if you are doing more than 0.6 of teaching days, in case they want to let you have a day off...

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