Agenda item

De-delegation of funding for Trade Union time off for Senior Representatives for 2022/2023

Report of Corporate Director for Finance and Resources


Elaine Harrison, Employee Relations Consultant, Human Resources, elaborated on her report and which outlined the proposed funding arrangements for trade union facility time for senior trade union representatives from schools to attend negotiation and consultation meetings and to represent their members in schools from 1 April 2022 to 31 March 2023.


The following points were highlighted:


a)  The decision made by primary maintained schools at Schools Forum on 13 October 2020 to de-delegate from 1 April 2021 to 31 March 2022 related to that year only, so a new approval is required for de-delegation to continue from 1 April 2022 to March 2023.


b)  Schools Forum members of maintained mainstream primary schools must decide whether this service should be provided for centrally and the decision will apply to all maintained mainstream primary schools in that phase.


c)  There are 7 recognised Trade Unions, with reps getting access to facility time. The time allocated is based on member numbers which is submitted annually. The facilities time is divided between the reps which are paid for by facilities time through a pooled arrangement.


d)  Regarding value for money, Union reps spend time negotiating on all major policies affecting Education; annually reps are required to examine Pay Policy prior for it going out to consultation and once agreed, passed to all schools that have bought into the HR services. This prevents the number of disputes as a consultation has already been undertaken and an outcome reached.


e)  Without trade union facility time, individual schools would have to devise their own Pay Policy and without the pooled arrangements schools would be required to negotiate contractual policies including the most complex policies such as Pay and Disciplinaries.


f)  The Key role of the Trade Unions is to discuss, consult and negotiate; they meet regularly with Local Authorities to discuss emerging issues in a non- adversarial manner assisting and supporting schools where there are complex re-organisations and re-structures.


In response to questions asked, the following information was highlighted:


g)  The current funding method means that academies will be reimbursed for time spent away from school on TU duties.


h)  Maintained schools and academies are reimbursed the salaries of the representatives who are employed by them.


i)  It would be difficult for individual schools to negotiate their own policies and schools participating in the trade union arrangement would benefit from harmonising policies which would provide consistency, providing assistance for schools’ leaders and stability.


j)  It was requested that in future, a more detailed report be provided for the forum members which would include a breakdown of costs.




(1)  that maintained mainstream primary schools approve the de-delegation of funding for senior trade union representatives at a rate of £1.55 per pupil and a lump sum of £1,571 per school (noting that these charges will generate a £0.155m projected income and were based upon 69 maintained schools and academies buying into the scheme);


(2)  that maintained mainstream primary schools noted that the total funding requested to be de-delegated by maintained mainstream primary schools was £0.63m, made up of £0.017m generated by pupil’s numbers and £0.046m lump sum funding.

Supporting documents: