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Leave Of Absence


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Hi everyone,

 

I am putting together a staff Leave of Abscence request form, in the main because staff are arranging their own cover for days off in term time and letting me know very last minute. As there is a very strong possibility that we will be moving next year onto a school site, which means more children and staff, I also think it is my role to arrange the cover and authorise leave etc. However I dont want to come over all authoritarian and put the staffs backs up.

 

Is it appropriate to have a section for Reason for day off, or should I leave that blank

 

Claire x

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Absolutely you should know!!

 

The acceptable reasons would be (apart from holidays which I guess is set)

 

Illness (and they should let you know by a certain time for first day and then by certain time for subsequent days0

Training - which should be agreed in advance by you anyway

Compassionate leave (which we give 3 days for nearest and dearest and then is unpaid)

 

If you have the authority you should be authoritarian at least to get the message across

 

Good luck

 

pw

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a lot depends on your management style,type and size of setting, number of staff involved, and the kind of staff involved. As well as your relationship with the staff.

 

I used to encourage staff to swap and cover each other... providing the correct ratios were met.... and they all understood this.. holidays and longer absences were usually passed through me, but it was often the case that they had found the cover , btu this is a small setting ........what works for one may not another.

 

I would personally would not need to know why.... but I know that all would have told me anyway..... sometimes it was for their own children's appointments too....they had no choice over these.. if they were given a time and date for things like orthodontists and hospital they had to take it....

 

You may well find as they are used to sorting this out together that you will find an initial resentment and resistance...we are committee run and one did decide to try this.... had so many problems that they gave up.... they did once say no to one staff member she could not change , so they just rang in sick! Something they never did before....

 

Inge

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Its a tricky one isnt it. I had a member of staff who was trying to find cover for a permeanant Friday off, I had to explain that this wasnt acceptable as it fell under the terms of renegotiating her contract, she was quite upset, but she has a key child who only does a Friday. I wanted to bring in the leave of absense so that we are clear about everything.

 

If all goes ahead in April 2010, we will be linking up with a 3rd Phase Childrens centre on a school site, which means surestart will pay for the new purpose built building and be attached to us with offices etc, we will rent the space from them. I want to have clear procedures in place before we move.

 

Thanks for your help, you have given me some ideas

 

Claire

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By and large we don't take time off during term time - its in our contracts. However sometimes it is unavoidable and then what happens is they let me know the 'problem' so that I'm aware and check with me who can cover (both to take account of who else might be off that day, or to make sure that qualification levels/ratios etc are maintained). However then they go away and organise the cover themselves, which helps them understand the impact of them having a day off, and make the link between having the right mix of staff in at each session.

 

As for having a form, do you have a particularly large staff team? If not it might seem a bit 'big company' especially if nothing like this has been in place before. Generally the staff email me or text me and then it is all written in the diary. Very informal, but it works for us!

 

Maz

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Its a tricky one isnt it. I had a member of staff who was trying to find cover for a permeanant Friday off, I had to explain that this wasnt acceptable as it fell under the terms of renegotiating her contract, she was quite upset, but she has a key child who only does a Friday. I wanted to bring in the leave of absense so that we are clear about everything.

 

If all goes ahead in April 2010, we will be linking up with a 3rd Phase Childrens centre on a school site, which means surestart will pay for the new purpose built building and be attached to us with offices etc, we will rent the space from them. I want to have clear procedures in place before we move.

 

Thanks for your help, you have given me some ideas

 

Claire

 

 

For permanent changes I was always consulted and made the arrangements... for that I would expect to have the say.. bit different to the occasional swapping, days off etc, as it has much more of an impact.... but would leave of absence be appropriate for that as actually she was changing her hours of work completely, not quite the same thing.

 

Inge

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I had a member of staff who was trying to find cover for a permeanant Friday off, I had to explain that this wasnt acceptable as it fell under the terms of renegotiating her contract, she was quite upset, but she has a key child who only does a Friday.

Would it have been possible for her to find someone interested in taking up her Friday session? I'm interested in how settings cope with these changes in working patterns - in my own little group I would much rather be flexible when staff want to reduce the sessions they work than run the risk of losing them altogether. I have had practitioners come to me and say they are finding it difficult managing to fit everything in and are stressing about how far behind the ironing is getting or whatever and whilst this might seem a trivial reason for having another day off, I can usually accommodate their needs.

 

I'm guessing that it is not always easy to be flexible in a larger group or in a full day care setting though. Complicated business, isn't it?

 

Maz

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we did as you Maz..

 

accommodated and changed , staff moving around, swapping, adding, reducing hours as needed...but for regular changes they came to me first, and then went to arrange the change if they could!

 

Inge

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but for regular changes they came to me first, and then went to arrange the change if they could!

Oooh yes - I would be most unchuffed if someone came in brightly one day and said "I'm not working Mondays any more - but its OK because I've organised it so that so-and-so can!" :o

 

Maz

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i think flexibility is the key and when you work in a small setting you need to make sure everyone is happy

having said that they also need to know that you are in charge

 

we have similar

dyas of for child sickness, assembly appointments - staff arrange cover but i need to be informed and would ideally like to know first becuase i need to know that the cover is suitable

 

staff sickness - i will arrange cover as i think the last thing you want to do when you feeel ill is ring round colleagues

but they have to call me as early as possible

 

i only have 7 staff so this works well for us

 

dont have an absence form but have it written down and handed out at inductions

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i think flexibility is the key and when you work in a small setting you need to make sure everyone is happy

having said that they also need to know that you are in charge

 

we have similar

dyas of for child sickness, assembly appointments - staff arrange cover but i need to be informed and would ideally like to know first becuase i need to know that the cover is suitable

 

staff sickness - i will arrange cover as i think the last thing you want to do when you feeel ill is ring round colleagues

but they have to call me as early as possible

 

i only have 7 staff so this works well for us

 

dont have an absence form but have it written down and handed out at inductions

 

Same for me to.. we're a small group and works well for us.

 

As with Hali and HM .. they always ok it with me first, then if possible they sort it out amonst themselves... again this helps them to understand the difficulties changing day can pose- but it also helps promote teamwork and them to feel more invoved in the running rather than 'do this/ do that'.

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