Disciplinary Policy

Introduction

This document details the procedure which would be followed in the event of concerns regarding the conduct or ability of supply teachers or support staff. The intention is that potential disciplinary cases be dealt with at an early stage with a view to resolving problems as quickly and fairly as possible.
The disciplinary process also indicates the standards of performance and behaviour at work which can reasonably be expected from employees both on day to day and long term positions.
It is impossible to list all possible acts of indiscipline which could occur in any employment, and it should therefore be noted that the rules indicated below are not exhaustive and can serve only as a guide.
Where the steps refer to Teacher it includes support staff and nursery nurses.

Procedure for Misconduct

The procedural steps set out below are a guide and will not be followed in full in every case, in particular during a supply teacher’s initial probationary period. The point at which the procedure is entered or the omission of any of the stages will depend entirely on the seriousness of the offence. Thus, a series of minor offences or a repetition of one such offence may involve the entire procedure whilst a more serious offence may well call for a final warning. Gross misconduct will lead to instant dismissal.
It should be recognised that informal reprimands given to a teacher by their superior are part of their working relationship and are outside the limit of the disciplinary procedure.

Offences other than gross misconduct

Verbal Warning

(For Minor Offences) In the case of minor offences the teacher will be given a formal verbal warning.

First Written Warning

(For Repeated Minor Offences or a More Serious Offence) If a more serious offence occurs or another minor offence occurs after the issue of a formal verbal warning the teacher will be given a first written warning.

Final Written Warning

(For Repeated Minor Offences and Very Serious Offences) If another offence occurs after the issue of a first written warning or if there is an action which the Company considers is a very serious offence a final written warning will be given to the teacher.

Dismissal

This is regarded as the ultimate step and in cases other than gross misconduct will take place where the teacher on a former occasion has been issued with a final written warning in respect of a similar matter or other cause of complaint.
Where a decision to dismiss has been taken the teacher will be informed that he will receive a formal written notice of this decision, together with a clear statement of the reasons for dismissal.

Procedure appropriate at each stage

At each stage the complaint against the teacher shall be notified to the teacher and he/she will be given the opportunity to state his / her case. He / She shall be told that he/she can be accompanied by a friend or fellow teacher of his/her choice.
At every stage the teacher shall be informed of:
His/her alleged misdemeanour
The consequences of further misdemeanour
If a verbal warning is given then written record of this warning will be made in the teacher’s file.
As each warning is given the Company and the teacher shall agree (or in default of agreement between the Company and teacher, the Company shall specify), the period of time to be allowed for improvement not only to be achieved but also to be sustained.

Suspension

At each stage the Company reserves the right to suspend the teacher without pay for a period not exceeding three days and for a longer period with pay should further suspension be necessary in circumstances where:-
The action complained of requires the immediate removal of the
place of work pending a decision concerning any disciplinary action to be taken and/or
the action complained of/alleged requires investigation and it is
considered by the Company that it is undesirable for her to remain on duty.

Appeals

The teacher has the right to appeal against any disciplinary action taken against him /her. The wish to appeal should be notified in writing to the Principal Education Officer and shall be heard whenever possible within 24 hours of the disciplinary interview. In cases where the disciplinary action has been taken by the Managing Director, then of course no appeal can be made, but he will review his / her decision as if it were an appeal if so requested. Unless the appeal is made within five days of the interview, it will be assumed that the teacher accepts the disciplinary action taken.

Gross Misconduct

Except in trivial cases which will be treated as misdemeanours the following are examples of actions which constitute gross misconduct and will lead to summary dismissal:-
Refusal to carry out reasonable instructions from a superior.
Theft: either from the Company, its employees, clients, assigned schools or agents, including the unauthorised possession of any of the Company posessions, goods, materials, products or produce.

Fraud: any deliberate falsification of records or any deliberate attempt to defraud the Company or fellow employees. Fraud can include falsification of time sheets, travel claims, self-certification forms, etc.

Violence: any fighting or violence involving any fellow teacher or any other person which takes place on
the Company premises or whilst at an assigned school.

Indecency which is related to employment with the Company.

Deliberate damage to Company property, or to the property of fellow employees or to the property of an
assigned school.

Intoxication on the Company premises or the bringing of intoxicants or illegal drugs onto the Company premises at any time or onto the premises of an assigned school.

Gross carelessness or negligence: including any action or failure to act which threatens the health or safety of any fellow employee or school, pupil or teacher including any disregard of safety rules which jeopardises the safety of those on the Company premises or thepremises of an assigned school.

Failure to comply with the provisions of the Company Safety Policy or that of an assigned school.

Failure to observe the confidential nature of information concerning the Company and the any assigned
school.

Any conduct which does or may bring the Company business into disrepute.

Breach of contract of employment: any fundamental breach of contract which renders continuation of employment impossible including failure to meet statute related provisions.

Harassment of other members of staff or of others, whether the harassment is sexual, racial or of any
other kind.

Discrimination against other members of staff, applicants for employment or others which is on grounds of sex, marital status, race, colour, religion, ethnic origin, nationality or disability.

Obtaining unauthorised access to, making unauthorised use of or making unauthorised amendments to information stored on computers, computer software or computer hardware.

Misdemeanours

The following are examples of action which may be regarded as action warranting disciplinary action amounting to less than summary dismissal, and for which dismissal may be appropriate if corrective action is not taken after the issue of a written warning:-
Unauthorised absence: including unauthorised absenteeism or unauthorised absence from the work place
Poor standard of work; or inadequate attention to work.
Poor timekeeping or attendance: every member of the staff is required to give constant and regular
attendance within the terms of their contract of employment.
Provocative, abusive or truculent behaviour.
Sexist or racist conduct or behaviour of any kind.

Procedure for Poor Performance

The procedural steps set out below are a guide and will not be followed in full in every case, in particular during a supply teachers initial probationary period. The point at which the procedure is entered or the omission of any of the stages will depend entirely on the seriousness of the performance problem.

Procedure Appropriate at each Stage

Schools to whom supply teachers are assigned will provide references to grade the performance of the supply teacher based on a scale of one to five, which range from a grade of one being excellent to a grade of five being that the assigned school does not wish that supply teacher to be placed with them again due to performance problems.

Verbal Warning

Following receipt of school references with one four grade, the supply teacher will be spoken to by their Branch Manager on the areas of concern regarding the supply teacher’s performance and the Manager will issue a verbal warning to the supply teacher which will be documented in the Teacher’s Call Log. Further training needs may be identified here and a relevant referral made.

Written Warning

Following receipt of one further reference of a grade four, the supply teacher will be spoken to by the Branch Manager regarding the supply teacher’s continuing poor performance and the supply teacher will be issued with a written warning. Further training needs may be identified here and a relevant referral made.

Final Written Warning

Following receipt of a further review with a grade four, the supply teacher will be issued with a final written warning by the Principal Education Officer.Further training needs may be identified here and a relevant referral made.

Dismissal

Following receipt of a further review with grade four, the supply teacher’s contract will be terminated by the Principal Education Officer.
At every stage the supply teacher shall be informed of:-
his/her alleged performance shortcomings
what in the view of the Company needs to be done by way of improvement
the period of time during which such improvement is to be shown
the consequences of there being no improvement
If any assistance is to be provided this will be detailed in writing after any stage within the procedure.

Appeals

The teacher has the right to appeal against any of warnings issued for poor performance. The wish to appeal should be notified in writing to the Principal Education Officer within five working days of receipt of the warning. The decision of the Principal Education Officer will be final.

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