Changing schools and holiday pay

This advice is about resigning from your current teaching position. It describes the period of notice a teacher should give their school, and what effect there may be on holiday pay

Minimum notice period is two months

If you are resigning from your teaching position the minimum notice period is two months (STCA 3.11 and ASTCA 2.8).

However, from a good faith perspective, the more notice a teacher can give their current school the better.

The Ministry of Education sets term dates for schools. The official last day for secondary and area schools this year is “no later than Friday 16th December” or an earlier date if 380 half-days have been completed. The first day of Term One in 2017 is set as between Monday 30th January and Tuesday 7th February.

Two options for choice of date

There are two options on the date that can be given. Neither will affect holiday pay for a permanent teacher.

The first date that could be given is the last day of the current school year. If  school is scheduled to finish on Wednesday 14th December. This is okay as long as it is two months notice.

The second possibility is the day before school recommences in 2017. In practice a date of January 27th will almost always work.

Uncertainty about what day to give is common because of variability in school start dates, so if unsure please contact your field officer.

Both the STCA (section 4.8) and the ASTCA (section 3.24) define holiday pay as the salary payable to teachers on cessation of service or for periods during which schools are closed for term vacations. Those provisions also state that any permanently appointed teacher, full-time or part-time, is paid for all intervening vacations. So a permanently employed teacher should be paid right through.

In practice this is what payroll does even given variability of school start dates.

It will certainly help avoid any problems if your current school notifies Novopay that you are transferring to another school.

For permanent teachers there are two exceptions

First, if you have taken more than five days of leave without pay during a school year then your holiday pay will be reduced. The reduction is at a rate of 0.3 days holiday pay for every day of leave without pay. If you took a holiday overseas for two weeks during term time, this is a total of 14 days leave because weekends count in such a situation. You will then lose a further 4.2 days, rounded to 4 days holiday pay. This will usually be deducted in the first vacation period after you return.

The second exception is when you resign and leave teaching, either during or at the end of a school year. In those situations you will be paid, on cessation of duty, any holiday pay owing. This is calculated generally as 0.3 days holiday pay for each day of paid service (including weekends), minus any holiday pay already paid out in earlier vacation periods.

Fixed term teachers

However the situation is worse for fixed term teachers. They have no right to be paid through intervening vacations.

In the case of a genuine fixed-term position, the member should work with both schools to set suitable end and start dates to minimise loss of holiday pay. If you suspect that your position should really be permanent, then contact your field officer.

 

Article published in PPTA News December 2016 (vol.37 no.9)

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Last modified on Friday, 10 March 2017 11:27