As you may be aware, an extra bank holiday has been announced for 3 June 2022 for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

As on previous similar occasions (eg the 2012 Diamond Jubilee or 2011 Royal Wedding), the DfE has therefore amended the Education (School Day and School Year) (England) Regulations to reduce the school year 2021/22 for maintained schools to a minimum of 189 days, in order to allow schools to close that day or on another day.

Schools not already on half term break on the day of the bank holiday will be able to close that day. Most schools will, however, be on half term at the time of the bank holiday. This change to the Regulations will allow maintained schools to be able to close at another time to give staff and students an extra day off [1].

The DfE will also amend the STPCD 2021-22 to reduce the number of days that teachers must be available to work from 190 to 189 teaching days to 189 (+5 INSET days) and amend the 1265 hours of ‘directed time’ to 1258.5 hours for that year, thereby encouraging employers to grant the extra day off.

If the additional bank holiday falls during half-term week, all schools, LA or MAT (whichever sets term dates) will be able to identify another day of ‘holiday’ elsewhere in the year on which the school will be closed and all staff given a day’s paid holiday. Employers should be consulting with the NEU and making arrangements to ensure that none of our members are treated less favourably.

LGA advice is that in accordance with the Green Book (Part 2 Para 7.1) all employees will be entitled to a holiday with a normal day’s pay for the additional bank holiday (pro-rate for part-time employees).

All part-time workers have legal protections. They should not be treated less favourably than their full-time colleagues. Where full-time workers benefit from the additional bank holiday; part-time workers should also benefit. This should be pro-rata in relation to their part-time hours. For example, where a school closes for the Jubilee on an additional day when a part-time worker doesn’t usually work, the employer must adjust the part-timer’s pay or adjust their working days and any directed time to enable them to benefit from the public holiday.

Similarly, employers must ensure that they do not disadvantage term-time only (TTO) workers. The Green Book Part 4.12 Para 13.2 provides: “If the Government announces an additional public holiday(s), a TTO employee’s pay should reflect the additional public holiday or an additional period of paid leave during term-time could be granted.” For detailed guidance on how to do this, employers can access the LGA advice.

Where academies employ their teaching staff on STPCD conditions, the above guidance applies equally to them. Where staff are not employed on STPCD conditions, the position regarding the extra day will depend on the contract of employment - if it states that staff are entitled to all bank holidays, the employer will be bound to grant the additional day.  We will clearly wish to argue that all staff in should be treated in the same way and granted the additional day, even where different terms apply.

Branch officers should contact LAs to check the advice that the LA will be giving schools.

Workplace reps should ensure that school calendars and directed time calendars reflect these changes and provide staff with the extra day off. 

[1] Schools are required to be open for a minimum of 190 days or 380 sessions in normal years, even though 190 days is a maximum for teachers’ working time.