1 JOSEPH SWAN ACADEMY REDUNDANCY POLICY Author Head Teacher Date approved by Governors March 2014 Reviewed every 3 years Date of next review Signed by name (..) Signed:...
2 Introduction The Academy is committed to ensuring job security for its employees and will take all reasonable steps to avoid compulsory redundancies. However, it is inevitable that staffing reductions will be required from time to time and when this occurs the Academy will ensure that the process is fair and equitable for all concerned. All parties will be consulted throughout the process and kept informed of progress. The Academy will endeavour to manage the process as quickly and efficiently as possible, whilst adhering to the relevant legislation. The purpose of this policy is to ensure that the process is neither directly or indirectly discriminatory on the grounds of race, gender, disability, sexual orientation, age or religion or belief. This policy will apply to all teaching and support staff, regardless of length of service or contract type. Definition of Redundancy A redundancy occurs because the employer has need for fewer staff to carry out work of a particular nature at a place of employment. The reason for the redundancy will usually be because: - curriculum, organisational or management changes have produced an over provision in one or more departments; - pupils numbers have fallen; or - budgetary reductions make support for the current level of staffing impossible. The governing body through the Head Teacher will identify potential overstaffing situations during regular reviews or budget-setting or budget delivery. As soon as a potential redundancy situation is identified, the Head Teacher will inform the Chair of Governors. This action will ensure that the correct support, advice and guidance is provided throughout the process. If after due process an employee is selected for redundancy, the Academy as the employer will take appropriate steps to mitigate the effects of the redundancy up to, and including, the date on which the dismissal takes effect. This will include attempts to find suitable alternative employment where possible.
3 Action to avoid redundancy The governors will seek resolutions, which avoid the need for compulsory identification of a member of staff as being surplus to requirement at the Academy. To this end the governors will explore the possibilities of staff: - volunteering to work part time; - jobshare (with a guarantee that full time posts will be offered to the partners in the event of a financial improvement); - early retirement; - natural wastage; - transfer of staff into other appropriate work within the Academy, providing retraining where possible. - restrictions on the recruitment of staff in the affected areas; - termination of agency or supply staff; and - non-renewal of fixed term or temporary contracts. Only if these solutions are unavailable will the governors commence the formal process of identifying a post as surplus to requirements. The Head Teacher will inform the local trade union representatives that the Academy is taking all reasonable steps to avoid entry to the formal process and that the options outlined above will be explored prior to formal proceedings. Criteria The identification of a member of staff as "surplus to requirement" at the Academy must be fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory. In order to achieve such an identification it is essential that this is done by using clear and unambiguous criteria, which is objective and has been agreed before any procedure is started. Criteria, which would target an individual rather than identify a post, could result in an aggrieved employee testing the procedure through an Employment Tribunal, on the basis that the identification was unfair. Consultation Where all attempts to prevent a redundancy have been unsuccessful, the governing body, through the Head Teacher, will consult with the staff and the trade unions. It is important that both the staff and trade unions are informed that all options have been explored, to avoid a compulsory redundancy situation. At this point all parties will be informed of the process that is to be adopted. Reduction of staff Flow chart and check list To be used when selection for redundancy becomes necessary
4 Final Budget position identified and ratified by Governing Body. Staffing Committee set up to deal with staff reductions and consider representations from those selected. Appeals Committee also set up to hear appeals. At this stage the savings to be achieved will be known and all other budget Headings will have been examined carefully by the Governing Body. Although the categories of staff will be known the identity of staff to be made redundant will not be known. Academy s Staffing Committee prepare section 188 information and organise the distribution to staff representatives and unions. Volunteers for redundancy identified Agreement reached on volunteers being made redundant /retiring Estimates of benefits supplied to volunteers Agreement not reached staff included in selection process If selection is not confirmed, need to go back to curriculum audit Academy staff informed by Head Teacher/Chair of Governors. Volunteers sought for redeployment and redundancy Staffing Committee consultation meeting with representatives & unions Curriculum audit carried out in Academy by Head Teacher / Staffing Committee. Non confirmed volunteers included at this stage Staff selected. Selected staff informed by HT/Chair of Governors. Right of representation to Governing body Staffing Committee before final decision made. If selection stands, employee has right of appeal and writes to claim appeal hearing within 14 calendar days of decision Appeals heard by Appeals Committee Staffing Committee arrange meeting inviting staff representatives and unions to discuss proposals. Notice issued to selected staff Employment Terminated
5 Check List Selection Process Dates are generally latest date by which action should have taken place Budget set by Governing Body and staff types and numbers identified Staffing and Appeals Committee formed Staffing Committee agree proposed posts to be deleted S188 produced forwarded to Unions. Consultation meeting arranged and date included on S188 to discuss proposals between staffing committee and unions. The criteria for selection, selection matrix and the audit questionnaire(to be completed by staff) forwarded to the unions for consultation at the meeting. End Jan End Jan Mid Feb Mid Feb Meet by early March Must be equal in number Trade unions have accepted in principle a matrix and questionnaire. Agreed Audit Questionnaire is distributed to staff Audit Questionnaire collected and entered to matrix. Link inspector should be present at this meeting. Selected person informed of selection and appeal process. Meeting arranged for representation of staff to Staffing Committee to challenge selection (14 calendar days allowed from employee being informed). If selection confirmed employee given 14 calendar days to appeal to appeals committee. If decision upheld, then termination notice issued. Mid March Person inf. by 7 April Meet by 21 April Appeal heard by 5 May Usual to give 2 weeks to complete Staffing Committee conducts audit Letter to selected person to confirm probable selection If challenge successful, back to audit If challenge successful, back to audit 6 May Staff Identified notified to Personnel &Staffing Support Service by this date
6 Notes If redundancy proposals include support staff the dates may be relaxed a little. If redundancy includes deletion of TLR posts, selection should be from TLRs only If redundancy includes teachers, not TLR postholders selection should be from teachers only Notice can and will be withdrawn up to termination date if situation changes and redundancy is no longer necessary Notes: If there is the equivalent of a part time position to reduce, any part time staff are not automatically selected based upon their hours. Redundancy is only considered when all other avenues have failed to bring about the reduction. Redundancy is not a substitute for dealing with competency issues Audit must be carried out anonymously and skills matched to posts available It is necessary for the Academy, under the Trade Unions and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992, to disclose certain information to the recognised trade unions and professional associations: - the reasons for the proposals i.e. a reduction in pupil numbers etc.; - the number and description of the categories of staff proposed to dismiss as redundant; - the total number of each category of staff employed at your Academy; and - the proposed method of selection for redundancy. The Academy, will then deal with any representations made by the trade unions and professional associations and will consider any proposals made. Any proposals will be considered by the governors and the Head Teacher. Timescales Any employee has a right to reasonable notice of dismissal (with the possible exception of dismissal on serious disciplinary grounds). Statute defines this
7 as one week for each year of continuous service up to a maximum of 12 weeks unless their contract provides a greater period. Teachers are entitled to two months notice in the Autumn and Spring terms and three months in Summer term, to take effect at the end of the specified period. Notice must therefore be given no later than 31st October, 28th February and 31st May to take effect at the end of the relevant period. To allow time for the procedure to be properly conducted the governors will start the process of identification by at least mid September, January or April respectively. In the event of a compulsory redundancy being identified, the member of staff has the right to make representations to the Staffing Committee, and then appeal against the decision made to the Appeal Panel. This process clearly takes time to complete. Therefore, the process will be planned carefully to ensure that the necessary timescales are adhered to. In such cases where notice is not formally provided to the employee by the deadline, the Governing Body will be obliged to employ them for an extra period, to ensure that the necessary notice periods are complied with. For example, if notice of termination of a contract for 31st August were not provided to a teacher by 31st May, they would be employed at the Academy until 31st December. The governing body recognises that formal notice to terminate a contract, on the grounds of redundancy, cannot be given until the entire representation and appeals process has been completed. Premature Retirement Where a member of staff indicates an interest in retiring prematurely, with the relevant redundancy entitlement, as an alternative to declaring a redundancy, the member of staff is be advised to contact the Head Teacher for advice. Employee s Rights on Redundancy An employee who receives an offer of alternative employment, whether in writing or not, with the Academy and takes up that employment within 28 days of the present contract terminating, will not be eligible for a redundancy payment. If, however, the offer is made after the date of termination the entitlement to a redundancy payment remains. An employee who is to be made redundant is legally entitled to reasonable time off, to look for alternative work or re-training opportunities. Any employee selected for redundancy is entitled, as a minimum right, to the normal period of notice as specified in his/her contract of employment. Any notice of termination must not be given prior to the statutory consultation period. Wherever possible, notice will be worked and not paid in lieu. Where full notice is not worked, the balance will be paid in lieu except when a termination date is mutually agreed prior to the contractual date. In such cases, any balance in lieu of notice is not applicable.
8 Any outstanding holiday entitlement will be paid on termination. Where an employee is selected for redundancy, he/she has the right of representation to the Academy s Staffing Committee and then to the Appeal Panel. Should an employee choose to exercise the right of representation, initially to the Staffing Committee, he/she has a period of seven calendar days in which to inform the Academy in writing, of their intention and the reasons why. The period of seven days takes effect from the date on which the employee is informed of the decision in writing. The outcome of the Representation hearing will be communicated to the individual within seven calendar days. In the event that the employee is not satisfied with the outcome of the Representation hearing, he/she has the right to appeal to the Appeal Panel. The employee will have seven calendar days in which to notify the Head Teacher, in writing, if he/she wishes to appeal against the representation decision to this panel. Redundancy Entitlements Where there is a redundancy, there will be an entitlement to redundancy pay and other benefits, if the employee has been employed continuously for two years or more. The responsibility for calculating these entitlements will rest with the Academy. All employees, regardless of age, will be granted the option of: 1. Receiving a single compensation payment based on the statutory redundancy calculator, which provides an age and service based award of up to 30 weeks redundancy. This is then uplifted by a factor of two; OR 2. Receiving statutory redundancy (to a maximum of 30 weeks) together with three added years under the Teachers Pension Scheme (TPS) or Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) provisions. Currently, those employees aged 50 or over, who terminate due to redundancy, may also be granted access to their pension. From April 2010, the minimum retirement age will be increased to 55, therefore, no member of staff under 55 will be able to gain immediate access to their pension. It should be noted that all of the above cases are subject to the agreement of the Governing Body. Financial Responsibility Where the procedures outlined in this document have been correctly followed, the costs associated with making any post redundant will be paid by the
9 Academy. If a redundancy is subsequently the subject of an employment tribunal hearing, the Academy will also meet relevant costs. Procedures Identification of Potential Redundancy Situation Where a reduction in the staff complement is necessary, the following procedure will be applied: - The Head Teacher will inform the Governing Body of the provisional budget and in the light of that information a decision should be reached as to whether there is a need to reduce staff. If it concludes that this is the case, the matter will be referred to the Staffing Committee. At this stage, Head Teacher/Governors will seek advice from their Human Resources Advisers, who will be able to provide advice and guidance on the redundancy process. - Consultation with recognised Trade Unions will commence at the earliest opportunity (usually prior to the meeting of the Staffing Committee) and the Head Teacher/Chair of Governors of Staffing Committee will contact local trade union representatives to inform them of the situation and appraise them of the budgetary information already shared with Governors. The purpose of such consultation will be with a view to identifying and considering ways of avoiding dismissals or reducing the number to be dismissed. - A meeting of the Staffing Committee will be called as soon as possible, and under normal circumstances, no later than: o 1st April for potential dismissal on 31st August o 1st July for potential dismissal on 31st December o 1st December for potential dismissal on 30th April - On the basis of advice received from the Head Teacher and Human Resources Adviser, the Staffing Committee will determine the criteria by which any decision relating to the selection of staff for redundancy shall be made. The Committee will also quantify in general terms the number of teaching and/or non-teaching posts likely to be affected and a target date for achieving the required reduction. At its first meeting, it will confirm dates for the 2nd and 3rd meetings and provisionally determine a new staffing structure for the Academy. Consultation with Staff at the Academy/the LA/Trade Unions Following the initial meeting of the Staff Dismissal Committee, the Head Teacher will: - hold a staff meeting to advise them of the situation and to consult with them on ways to mitigate the need for compulsory displacement; - confirm details in writing to staff using the attached model letter; and
10 - consult further with trade union representatives and invite them to attend meetings with staff if so desired. Once these initial notifications have been made, a period of at least 28 days will then be allowed to elapse, prior to the 2nd meeting of the Staffing Committee, to enable meaningful consultation to take place. During this period the Head Teacher will invite staff who are at risk of redundancy to submit details of their employment history, skills, experience etc. so that if the reduction cannot be achieved voluntarily, governors will have information available to them in order to select a person(s) for redundancy. The template may need to be amended to ensure that the information sought is relevant to the agreed selection criteria. The Head Teacher will record the receipt of completed skills audits and allocate staff identifying numbers or letters, and remove names for distribution to Governors at the 2nd meeting. Voluntary Procedure The Head Teacher will ask staff at risk if any of the following apply:- - Alternative work in the Academy - Staff will be offered suitable, alternative employment in the Academy if this is possible. - Variation of contract on a voluntary basis - The opportunity for part time work, job sharing arrangements or some other variation to existing contracts will be considered where possible and where staff wish to do so on a voluntary basis. (Staff will be advised to consult their Trade Unions in such cases). - Voluntary redundancy/early retirement - Attention will be drawn to the approved voluntary redundancy/early retirement scheme. - Retraining opportunities - Consideration will be given to the possibility of retraining for suitable further employment, where this is appropriate. The Head Teacher will report any applications in respect of the above, to the Staffing Committee at its 2nd meeting. If the number of volunteers exceeds that which is required, the Head Teacher should see to reduce it to the appropriate figure by discussion with the staff concerned. An employee may be accompanied by a friend, who may be a Trade Union Representative. The maintenance of the Academy s curriculum will be taken into account in these discussions. If the release of a volunteer would not allow for the
11 maintenance of the Academy curriculum, then there will be deemed not to be a suitable volunteer and the compulsory procedure stated below will apply. Compulsory Procedure Where the required reduction in staffing has not been achieved through voluntary means, the following procedure will apply: Criteria for selection of staff for compulsory displacement must be based on objective factors and the following will form the basis of the detailed criteria to be used: - the needs of the Academy - these will include present and anticipated curricular, organisational, structural, managerial, pastoral and financial needs; - the skills, experience and qualifications of the staff. In particular cases, Governors may wish to additional criteria to reflect the particular circumstances of the Academy. These will be fair, objective and capable of verification. The Governors will apply the agreed criteria in the light of the information provided by staff (and the Head Teacher) on the completed model skills audits and reach a decision as to the member/s of staff to be compulsorily displaced. The Governors will use a scoring system, when evaluating the skills, qualifications and experience of staff against the needs of the Academy. As soon as is practicably possible following the meeting, the Head Teacher will arrange to meet with the staff provisionally named for displacement, to advise them of the decision and inform them of their rights to make representations to the Staffing Committee and of their further right of appeal to the Appeal Committee. This will be confirmed in writing. Staff have a right to be accompanied by a friend, colleague or trade union representative at this meeting. The Staffing Committee will arrange to meet within 5 working days to hear representations from staff who wish to do so. The Staffing Committee will either then confirm the original nominations or return to the previous stage of the process to select another member of staff for compulsory displacement. The decision of the Staffing Committee will be confirmed in writing to the member/s of staff concerned. The Academy will, within 14 days of receiving the notification, give the member/s of staff notice (or pay in lieu of notice only applicable to support
12 staff) terminating his/her contract in accordance with contractual provisions and as prescribed in employment legislation. Teachers who are dismissed on the grounds of redundancy will be dismissed on one of the following specific dates: 30th April 31st August 31st December with appropriate notice i.e. 2 months prior to 30th April and 31st December, 3 months prior to 31 August. However, staff with more than 8 years service will be entitled to a longer statutory notice period than the 2 month period allows. Therefore, a 3 month notice period is assumed until the actual notice period can be calculated, according to the individual s length of service. The Appeals Stage An employee who has been nominated for redundancy and who feels that this decision has been reached unfairly or improperly has the right of appeal. An application for appeal must be made, in writing to the Head Teacher within 5 working days, stating the grounds of the appeal. The Clerk to the Governing Body will then arrange a meeting of the Appeals Committee as soon as is practicably possible (normally within 15 working days). The Appeal Committee shall hear the matter provided no member of the Committee has had any previous involvement in the decision to which the appeal relates. The member of staff may be accompanied at the Hearing by a friend, colleague or trade union representative. The Chair of Governors of the Staffing Committee accompanied by the Head Teacher will be called to respond to the Appellants case. The Appeal Committee will either: ratify the nomination or overturn the decision The member of staff will be notified in writing of the outcome of the appeal. Where the decision of the Staff Dismissal Committee is overturned, the employee s employment will not be terminated. Where the decision of the Staffing Committee is ratified, no further action is required. Equal Opportunities
13 Throughout the redundancy process the governing body and Head Teacher will ensure that the Academy s equal opportunity policies are scrupulously observed. Monitoring and Review The Head Teacher will report to the Staffing Committee on the working of the policy whenever the policy has been called on. The Staffing Committee are responsible for proposing any amendments to the policy and procedures to the governing body.