Please read this advice alongside the NEU’s main FAQ advice for members which covers a range of general matters.
Can Term-Time Only (TTO) paid support staff be expected to work during school holidays and half terms?
TTO paid support staff are not required to work during school holiday periods. If schools want TTO staff to provide cover during holidays, they must agree to do so and paid appropriately at the correct overtime rate or given time off in lieu (TOIL) at the same rate. The correct enhanced rates are set out in Green Book, Part 3, Section 2.6. Whatever payment method is decided upon, ask the head for confirmation in writing. Different policies may apply if you work in an independent school or a post-16 college -consult your NEU Rep.
My school says that absence when self-isolating with suspected Covid-19 will be treated as normal sick absence. Is that correct?
No. Green Book, Section 10.9 says that absences caused by “contact with infectious disease” must not be offset against employees’ sick pay entitlements and should be recorded separately from normal sickness absence records. Different rules may apply for members in independent schools and post-16 colleges - consult your NEU rep.
What percentage of support staff can be required to attend school?
There is no set rule for school staffing levels but, given that employees should be working at home wherever possible in order to minimise the spread of the virus, and schools are only meant to be open for vulnerable children and children of "key workers", the number of staff only physically attending school should be kept to a minimum and organised on a rota basis. Staffing rotas and other arrangements should be negotiated at school level.
I was unable to use all my annual leave before the end of the leave year (31 March). Does that mean that I will lose my unused leave?
No. New regulations allow you to carry forward your four weeks of statutory annual leave entitlement where it was not reasonably practicable to take some or all of it due to the impact of coronavirus. This leave can be carried over for up to two years and you will be entitled to pay in lieu if your employment ends before it is taken. Employers have also been asked to relax their normal rules on carrying over contractual leave, so check your employer’s position if you wish to carry forward more than four weeks.