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Paternity leave - advice please, especially from fathers who are teachers.

(13 Posts)
klonger Mon 14-Sep-09 22:30:18

Hello, first post, so please forgive unintended clangers/errors/faux pas.

We are expecting our first child in January. Partner is a teacher, so can't take holidays outside of official school dates, so we will use our statutory 2 weeks paternity leave. School would like him to take two consecutive full weeks - ie Monday-Friday. My question is - what date should we give for him to start?

We think it's likely that, should I go into labour on or before the 29th, then he would be allowed to leave school at short notice to attend, so it's unlikely he would miss the birth. But our worry is that, if we start the paternity leave on the following Monday after my due date, ie the 1st Feb, but baby doesn't show until the end of the week, then we will have wasted a week of paternity leave that we would much rather have all together as a family. (Though I admit, it would be nice to have him around to wait on me hand and foot when I am a beached whale waiting for labour!) Likewise, if we don't start it till the following week (Monday 8th Feb) then I might end up home from hospital in the previous week and coping with a newborn while he is still at work - not something either of us particularly wants to experience!

Any advice most welcome. Thanks!

MaureenMLove Mon 14-Sep-09 22:35:21

That's a bit mean of his school imho! We have a teacher at our school on paternity leave at the moment and he started it on Wednesday last week. The baby was actually born at the end of the summer holidays, so he came in for the first three days, then took it from there.

Is he sure he has to make firm dates? Fine, if he has to do them consecutively, but to actually have to book them, is a bit unreasonable to me.

Is it primary or secondary?

MaureenMLove Mon 14-Sep-09 22:35:45

Oh, congratulations btw! grin

bigstripeytiger Mon 14-Sep-09 22:40:18

Im pretty sure that legally paternity leave cant start until the baby is born, so hopefully he wont be able to spend any paternity leave at home before the baby is born.


BosomForAPillow Mon 14-Sep-09 22:47:41

My dh had to give a date in advance (gave the due date) but it was only for paperwork purposes and he actually got to take his paternity leave from the day dd was born. (She was early.) I would imagine the school would have to be accommodating, can't imagine that they can insist on it having to start on a Monday either. Is he in a union? They would be good for advice...or to fight his corner if the school is being awkward about it.

cece Mon 14-Sep-09 23:00:19

I thought it didn't start till the baby was born. My DH had to have the two weeks after DS birth, even though I would have preferred him to take time off after my mum had gone home.

I think your DP needs to speak to his union to clarify his position before he speaks with his head again. (BTW I am a teacher)

Iggi999 Mon 14-Sep-09 23:03:00

I'm sure it's just like you giving your due date to your work, he won't be held to it. You def can't take it till there is a baby, however (no golfing weeks!) Best of luck.

ruddynorah Mon 14-Sep-09 23:07:03

you can specify the date the baby is an unknown date, or you can specify a date upto 8wks AFTER the baby is born.

they can't insist he states 2 full weeks now which may fall before the baby is due.

dh had this, he's in the police. they tried very hard to insist he chose specific dates. the form clearly states this is not required.

the form

klonger Tue 15-Sep-09 09:31:33

Hello - thanks all, very helpful - will go check out the paperwork again and ask the union for advice.

Reallytired Tue 15-Sep-09 09:37:48

I'm not a teacher, but I do work in a school. There is a carers booklet that our council has which outlines rights. If there is any confusion its worth contacting his union or the HR officer at county who looks after his school.

Schools have to comply with the law as much as any other employer.

cakeforbrains Tue 15-Sep-09 09:59:22

DH is a teacher and he didn't get paternity leave sad. His school said he could have the time off, but his lessons would not be covered by a subject specialist so he would need to set all the work in advance, mark it afterwards and catch up on anything that was missed. He found it easier to go into work the day after DS2 was born shock

pookamoo Tue 15-Sep-09 10:07:50

My dd was 15 days late - so if your dh is really required to start his pat leave on a set day, he could be back at work before baby comes!

I'm pretty sure, as others have said, that pat leave only starts when the baby is born.

Good luck and congrats!

Reallytired Tue 15-Sep-09 10:46:47

There is a European work directive that allows parents to take up to 13 weeks off unpaid to cover dependents emergencies.

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