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Materntity Leave Advice (Teacher, Part Time, Public Sector)

(19 Posts)
hub2dee Mon 07-Mar-05 21:21:40

Hi all, dw is an English teacher (a deliciously fine and wonderfully skilled one) at the local school. We are due with our first on 2nd August 2005.

She currently works Wednesdays and Thursdays with no additional management responsiblities (she stopped ft plus 3 when we were ttc for less stress and some time together before babbas !!!).

She is about to disucss dates / arrangements for return to work after the baby, and wondered if any gems of MN wisdom might fall her way.

I have questions regarding dates and questions regarding working pattern upon return:


We are planning on 26 weeks OML, and 26 weeks AML, but:

1) Should she try and take it as early as possible (Earliest OML I think is week 30 or 17th May) or as late as possible (compulsory leave week 39 29th July)

2) Would decision above particularly impact when she could / should return ?

(I know some people have posted, for example, about returning at the beginning of a half term or at the end of July etc. etc.)


We chose her current Weds / Thurs part-time arrangements as it gave us long weekends either side. Is it likely that with a baby some other pattern might be better ? 4 mornings a week perhaps, or Tuesday / Friday to space out being away from sproglet, or perhaps sticking to our current Weds / Thurs might be easier were we to need a childminder etc.

(I have very flexible working arrangements, might even be SAHD, the school loves her so will likely be flexible).

Answers on a postcard, all comments appreciated.

hercules Mon 07-Mar-05 21:25:03

Dont do mornings!!! what she does now sounds best.

Hulababy Mon 07-Mar-05 21:37:05

My friend tried doing every morning (she's a teacher too) and she found it a nightmare, and she has since reverted back to working 3 full days instead.

Make sure your DW makes the most of her holidays when planning mat leave. I startedmine at a half term BUT it is important that on your letter, the date your DW starts mat leave is the first day back AFTER the holiday. Similar, when going back - if at a holiday. Put down that she is going back on the START date of a holiday, even if it is the start of the six week holiday. This is perfectly legal and allowable, although some schools may try to tell you differently.

pixiefish Mon 07-Mar-05 21:44:27

Yorkiegirl works mornings- you could ask her about that. Personally I wouldn't- stick to the way it is now. Agree with Hula regarding the start and end dates although I think that your dw will start her mat leave on the day the baby's born- because it'll be in the middle of the school holidays.

Leave it as late as she can before starting mat leave- end of term is never that busy anyway.

That way if she wants a year off hse can say that she's returing on the first day of the summer hols next year and not actually start back until sept thus gaining 6 weeks extra paid leave

Nome Mon 07-Mar-05 22:30:39

And remember that if she decides she doesn't want to go back, she has to work 13 weeks full-time, 26 weeks part-time (including holidays) or pay her mat leave money back. Everything above SMP that is.

pixiefish Mon 07-Mar-05 22:34:55

What I'd do if I had another baby is- not take the maternity pay that work pay while i'm off. I'd try and live off the SMP. Then if and when i go back- once i've finished the necessary time i'll get the mat pay in one lump.

The stress of HAVING to go back to work or pay the money back was a real horror for me.

fisil Mon 07-Mar-05 22:36:14

I would leave it as late as poss with no.1 especially as it is end of term and things are a bit easier then. Mind you, I stopped at 37 weeks with my first (2 weeks before end of Xmas term) instead of going to 39 weeks, and I was grateful by then. But her school sounds much more supportive.

I also agree with the full days rather than mornings - she'll just find herself staying late anyway, at least this way she gets to compartmentalise her work and home time.

hub2dee Mon 07-Mar-05 22:46:54

Every time I was about to hit reply to write 'thank you' a new post came in !

Love MN, and this on a night when we're all thinking about people with much more challenging sitautions...

I'll have a butchers at the calendar, and see what might be best, and suggest dw sticks with her two days per week.

Thanks again all those who posted.

hub2dee Thu 17-Mar-05 21:22:04

Bump this to ask another question, rather than beginning a new thread so then all my dw's info is here...

We are due 2nd August, and dw is planning to work as late on in her pg as possible, and take the maximum maternity leave:

26 weeks OML and 26 weeks AML would mean she returns shortly before the school breaks up for Summer 2006 !

I seem to remember reading somewhere something about changes / additions to maternity leave regulations if the ML in question occurs during a holiday... something designed to protect people who are on ML during the Summer break for example, as my dw will be...

Does anyone know if there are some special rules etc. that apply in this scenario, or am I talking sh*t ?

Many thanks oh wise ones.

Hulababy Thu 17-Mar-05 21:25:25

Not sure to be honest. If she can manage to keep going till the end of school, then her ML can start the week the baby is due though, rather than at the start of the school holidays.

cazzybabs Thu 17-Mar-05 21:50:28

For the first baby I went off at the start of the summer term and came back in the middle of the August holidats. For the second baby I went off a week after the start of the autumn term and came back 2 weeks before the easter holdays.

Yorkiegirl Thu 17-Mar-05 22:00:27

Message withdrawn

hub2dee Thu 17-Mar-05 22:07:30

Hey hula, your night of liberation and you're in the staffroom !!!

She's due the 2nd August, and term finishes the last day in July or something, so she can work till very near the end of term, but I'm trying to figure out if the fact that her first 12 weeks ML is in Summer hols if some kind of 'date shifting' comes into play wrt to salary etc...

Thanks for the info cazzy... you lot think in term dates and it is very hard for my tired brain to tune in, but will ponder...

Yorkie: yep, Weds / Thurs is ideal for the 'long weekend' idea - not that we do so much of it !!!! But it' still nice to have the option...

janeybops Thu 17-Mar-05 22:07:52

Leave it as late as possible to go on maternity leave, that way you get longer after the baby is born. I went at 35 weeks with the first and that was way too early (I was 2 weeks late so was at home for 7 weeks!!!). With 2nd I left at 38 weeks and that was much better - but then I went to 42 weeks again so...

janeybops Thu 17-Mar-05 22:09:11

I thought the weeks were counted from the Sunday the baby was born - at least it is in my Borough, so if you have baby on Sat you 'lose' a week iyswim.

pixiefish Thu 17-Mar-05 22:10:58

'She's due the 2nd August, and term finishes the last day in July or something, so she can work till very near the end of term, but I'm trying to figure out if the fact that her first 12 weeks ML is in Summer hols if some kind of 'date shifting' comes into play wrt to salary etc... '

If she stays in work until the end of the summer term then her ML will start on the day she has the baby (or the monday before she has the baby cos that's the way in teaching)

tassis Thu 17-Mar-05 22:11:41

I'm a teacher too (but in Scotland so term times etc are different). Thought I'd give my opinion on working a 2 day week. After having ds I worked a Monday and a Thursday until we moved house in Nov. I would have preferred to do 2 days together, but this was what suited childcare and my jobshare partner best. It was great! It felt like I only ever worked one day, only had to organise the house to be away for one day, only had one day at a time away from ds.

Before having ds I did the odd half day supply and IMO it was as if you were doing a whole day as I was constantly clock watching and couldn't really relax.

All the best with the rest of the pregnancy!

pixiefish Thu 17-Mar-05 22:11:45

janeybobs- sorry crossed with you- yes- that's how it is here. The week runs from sunday or monday- can't remmeber which

hub2dee Thu 17-Mar-05 22:39:18

Thanks all. Seems I was mistaken about the holdiay / 12 week thingy... (but will continue hunting for info in the background... must've got it in my head somehow).

DW wants to stay at work till as late as poss, so hopefully everyone will be lovely to the Huge Lady when it's hot

Wasn't the weather glorious today ? First really nice day in what feels like 6 months.

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