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Maternity rights and returinig to work.

(9 Posts)
michC Sat 30-Jun-07 18:58:39

Am i being over sensitive? I am a teacher and deputy head of a department. I have just been told that when i return from mat leave i wont have my own classroom and because noone is really covering my role i wont have a timetable teaching my subject! I will have to teach a range of subjects around the school and do general supply! This has really P**d me off! They obviously cant change my deputy role but how can i be in charge of a dept im not working in? I feel really undervalued and as if im being punished for having a baby!

Is there anything i can do?

Elasticwoman Sat 30-Jun-07 20:54:17

Speak to your union rep.

What does your Head of Department think about having a deputy not teaching in the department?

Perhaps they just mean till the end of the academic year in which you return, after which things would go back to normal. Hope so.

Whatever you do, don't resign.

meandmyflyingmachine Sat 30-Jun-07 20:56:28

How do they manage with no-one teaching your timetable? Surely they have replaced your teaching hours with another member of staff?

BetsyBoop Sun 01-Jul-07 10:15:42

When you return to work after ordinary maternity leave (first 6 months), you have a right to the same job and the same terms and conditions as if you hadn’t been absent. This also applies when you come back after additional maternity leave (second 6 months), unless your employer shows that it’s not reasonably practicable for them to take you back in your original job (eg because the job no longer exists). In that case, you must be offered alternative work with terms and conditions as if you hadn’t been absent.

I'd raise it with your head or department & the head & get your union involved ASAP

DominiConnor Sun 01-Jul-07 10:19:57

To me, it shows the stupidity of the employer-hostile nature of the maternity laws.

Maybe the school is "punishing" her, certainly this happens, and is bad.
But the laws were created by socialists who thought everyone should work for a big employer, preferably the state.
Although the state employs thousands of people nearly identical to michC, her particular school simply may not have a slot that's the same as her old one.
The school's position is made worse by the fact that they can't know for a fact when or even if she was ever coming back.
Thus they covered as best they could.

I rather suspect there are no villains here, just a badly written law.

Elasticwoman Sun 01-Jul-07 13:28:52

Is it a state or a private school, OP?

michC Sun 01-Jul-07 14:39:16

State school! They are covering my timetable by sharing the lessons out amongst trainees! Not that i have anything against them but feel like the 5years i've given them mean nothing!!

Cyee Sun 01-Jul-07 16:03:13

Hi MichC - there's lots of good advice below which hopefully will help.

I have heard of schools dealing with mat leave in many different ways, none of which are meant to cast aspersions on the individual off having a baby. It's also made hard because school can't know exactly how long you'll be off for, which is a different situation to most employers/jobs where you can slot back in and out at will, whereas school managers tend to only be used to organising things per term or per year.

I think you should speak to your union rep and then speak to your boss. Try not to project onto the reasons why it's worked out like this, otherwise you'll feel miserable and will find it harder to get your points across in a measured, unemotional and clear way. The main issue I would raise is your concern about the expectation to cover subjects that aren't your strong point. This could be stressful for you and I would be asking them to talk you through why they've planned things the way they have, and how they propose addressing any concerns you have.

Elasticwoman Sun 01-Jul-07 17:13:01

So they are saving money by giving all your classes to trainees. Doesn't sound very legal to me. I'll be interested to hear what your union says about that.

But trainees only teach for a limited number of weeks. I don't see why you shouldn't pick up your own classes again as they finish. Perhaps the cover work is just for if you return to work before they have finished.

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