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Maternity rights Q

(6 Posts)
Puffinsnamechange Wed 12-Jul-17 19:11:38

I will be an NQT next year, on a one-year fixed-term contract in an academy. DH and I are thinking of starting a family soonish, and I have been trying to work out my maternity entitlements. I have looked on the NUT website (I'm a member) and found it fairly helpful. However, I can't figure out whether I would be covered by the Burgundy book regulations or not, as it is not a LA school. Irrespective of when I were to get pregnant, I will have been with the school for over a year at the qualifying date, so I think I would be covered by the Burgundy book, but I'm not sure. HR at school weren't particularly helpful, saying pregnancy and maternity is a specific area so the info is kept in the HR office, not put in the staff handbook. Like I want to advertise (more than I have already) that I am thinking about having children when I am currently on a fixed term contract. Which brings me to my next question: if you go on maternity halfway through a one-year fixed-term contract, (how) does this affect your mat pay and/ or rights to return to your job?

Any advice gratefully received!

smu06set Wed 12-Jul-17 19:15:31

Vast majority of academies stick with the burgundy book, to move away from it would require huge amounts of union consultation (unless it was a brand new academy not converted from a local authority school).
If you were to get pregnant then your enhanced maternity package would be the pay up to week 18 of maternity. After that it drops to statutory, and you'll get that regardless of whether your contract has ended as you'll have been employed during the qualifying period.

Puffinsnamechange Wed 12-Jul-17 19:20:50

Thanks for your quick reply! Just a clarifying question: would I be entitled to the SMP irrespective of whether my contract ended, or to the enhanced pay as well, even if my contract ended say 8 weeks into enhanced?

smu06set Wed 12-Jul-17 19:26:10

Smp definitely, as long as you are employed during the qualifying weeks. Enhanced I would have to read the details but my first inclination would be no.
To get enhanced anyway you need to have been employed for 6 months before you get pregnant. Unless you are already employed by them and/or have continuous service?

Puffinsnamechange Wed 12-Jul-17 19:31:41

Doing Teach First so coming towards the end of my first year of employment with them. So I would meet the criteria for continuous employment for 1yr+

smu06set Wed 12-Jul-17 19:52:50

I think your HR department would have to check direct with teachers but I don't think you would be eligible for enhanced past your contract end date - unless they want you back post maternity and are willing to extend your contract and wait.

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