Absence & Cover
In all cases of absence from College staff must follow the procedures outlined below. All absences are categorised as ‘planned’ or ‘unplanned’. These procedures have been adopted to ensure that we operate in accordance with the requirements of the national workload agreement for staff absence and cover, whilst providing enrichment opportunities for students, professional development for staff and College improvement.
Unplanned Absences : Illness or Emergency
In cases of absence due to illness or emergency telephone Julia Freeman by 7.15am on 01753 881691 AND also inform your line manager by email. Email work to your Subject Leader and the Cover Supervisor team, taking into account that your lesson may be covered by an external cover teacher who won’t have a laptop. You must contact The College before 7.15am either on the day you are absent or the day before if you know that you won’t be able to attend school the next day, unless it is known to be a fixed term absence. Procedures for fixed term absences must then be followed if this is the case. Upon your return to work please contact your Line Manager for a return to work meeting.
Staff who reach a threshold of 5 full days of absence will be required to meet with the Principal to discuss their absence. On return to work, your line manager will complete a formal return to work meeting which will be documented.
If, due to illness or an emergency you have to leave school during the day, please inform your Line Manager/Subject Leader and Julia Freeman. In these circumstances, where possible, we would ask that any cover required is organised by the department concerned.
There are different categories of ‘planned’ absence which require particular procedures to be followed as described below. An electronic calendar of all ‘planned’ absences is viewable in Microsoft Outlook/Public Folders/All Public Folders/Planned Absences. An absence has not been fully authorised until it has been entered into ‘planned absences’. Every member of staff is responsible for checking that is has been entered, before being absent from The College.
i) Medical Appointments
In the case of a hospital, or other medical appointment involving yourself, you will normally be expected to make the appointment outside of normal lesson times. If this is not possible you should contact the Principal for authorisation to be absent from College as soon as the appointment date/time is known. This will then be entered in The College ‘approved absences’ calendar. Any requests for absence due to the illness of a relative must be submitted to the Principal using a Leave of Absence form available from Emma Beck, Principal’s PA.
ii) Personal Matters
If there is an absolute need for you to be absent from College for a personal reason you must request and gain approval from the Principal prior to your absence. To do this you must complete a Leave of Absence form (available from Emma Beck) and gain written authorisation from the Principal. Once authorised, this will then be recorded in The College ‘approved absences’ calendar.
Examples of personal matters include:
- Family wedding
- Family Funeral
- Job interview
- Moving home
In the case of support staff the same procedure applies. Holiday leave is to be taken in school holiday periods unless prior authorisation has been granted.
iii) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) (Relevant to School Development Plan)
If you wish to apply for any form of training course you must initially complete and submit an application for CPD to Line Manager / SLT / Principal. You will be notified if the course has been approved.
iv) Trips and Visits
These are any activities that involve our students leaving The College site, both during and outside normal College hours or term time. In all cases, procedures related to planning trips and visits must be closely adhered to (these are contained in a separate statement of policy and practice). Requests for trips should be initially made for inclusion in The College calendar in the summer term, via SLT. To do this you must complete and submit an on line application form. If approved, the trip or visit will be entered into The College calendar in Outlook when the date/s are known. Only when the trip, or visit has been fully authorised are you permitted to make any bookings.
v) Calendar Activities, Meetings and All Other Planned Absences
You are not permitted to plan, or agree any other absence, or calendar activity, internal or external meeting that involves either yourself, or students being off timetable without prior approval from James Michie. For any activity that involves students you must complete and submit a written proposal to James Michie. Examples of meetings and activities under this section are:
- Rehearsals for College Productions (up to a limit of 1 day)
- Primary subject days and liaison visits to primary schools
- Curriculum enrichment events
- Revisions sessions for students
vi) Meetings and other planned absences
All other planned absenses must be agreed by the Principal, this includes:
- Meetings with parents, or someone from an external agency
- Minibus Test
Daily Cover Requirements
Cover Supervisors and/or supply teachers are used to cover planned teacher absences. For any unforeseeable absences for which supply cover is not available, teachers may in rare cases be required to cover classes in their ‘non‐contact’ periods. All cover planned and unforeseeable is published daily in the staffroom.
This includes room changes due to examinations etc. All teachers must check the daily cover sheet before the first period when they are due to be in College and must check their email at the start of a ‘non‐contact’ lesson to check whether they are needed for a late cover. Subject Leaders and LoTP must also check the cover board daily for any absences that affect their subject, or year team. Any issues related to cover must be addressed to the Vice Principal.