Term Time Contracts and Schools Workers

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2016 Local Government Service Group Conference
24 February 2016

Conference believes that enforced term-time contracts penalise a predominantly female workforce and compound the problems of low pay in schools. Teachers are automatically put on full-year contracts, but many support staff working alongside them are forced to take term time only contracts. This can reduce the salaries of support staff by up to 20% and is divisive, bad for morale and unfair.

Conference therefore believes that school staff that want to be on 52-week year contracts should be able to have them.

Where school support staff are on term-time contacts, there are many variations and inconsistencies in the formulas used for calculating and reducing pay from the full year rate to a term time equivalent. In addition, there is no clarity on holiday entitlement. This is why UNISON has called for a joint review of term-time working in the National Joint Council (NJC) claim and a NJC approach to deliver fair, consistent and transparent contracts for all school support staff.

Conference therefore calls on the Local Government Service Group Executive to step up UNISON’s campaign for the fair treatment of term-time workers by:

1)Campaigning to highlight the unfairness of term-time contracts across the UK to politicians and the wider public, through our media and lobbying work;

2)Using the NJC joint review of term time working to push for an agreement that delivers fairness for our members on the issues of pay, holiday entitlement, maternity pay, sick pay and other areas;

3)Organising to get academy schools and opted out councils to abide by any jointly agreed recommendations from the NJC review of term time working;

4)Working with regions and branches across the UK to support school members fighting the imposition of term-time contracts;

5)Updating UNISON negotiating advice and campaigning materials on term time contracts.