Education and Schools FAQ – Coronavirus

Education and schools FAQ’s

1) If my school closed, will I still be paid?

The simple answer is yes you will continue to be paid. After the Easter holidays if schools are still closed the employer can ask you to work, either from home or in the school with the correct provided resources, this is reasonable and the work will need to be meaningful as per your contract of employment and job description.

2) Can my School ask me to come to work if my school is closed?

(As Above) In addition, if you have a term time only contract, you are not obliged to work in the school holidays as your contract is only for term time. If the school ask you to come in to work in the holidays you will need to clarify if they are to pay overtime.

3) Do I get sick pay if I self-isolate?

If you school remains open and you have to self-isolate then yes, you will get paid via SSP (Statuary Sick Pay)

4) If a member of my family I live with has a health issue, can I self-isolate?

If your school stays open but you care for a vulnerable member of your family that resides with you and you do not want them to catch Covid-19 despite you being healthy and still working, and you stop working then please see below the advice.

Coronavirus – online isolation notes

Isolation notes will provide employees with evidence for their employers that they have been advised to self-isolate due to coronavirus, either because they have symptoms or they live with someone who has symptoms, and so cannot work. For the first seven days off work, employees can self-certify so they don’t need any evidence for their employer. After that, employers may ask for evidence of sickness absence. Where this is related to having symptoms of coronavirus or living with someone who has symptoms, the isolation note can be used to provide evidence of the advice to self-isolate. The government says the notes can be accessed through the NHS website and NHS 111 online. It does not yet seem to be live, but presumably will be going live later today. According to Matt Hancock, the Health & Social Care Secretary, if an employee does not have an email address, they can have the note sent to a trusted family member or friend, or directly to their employer. The service can also be used to generate an isolation note on behalf of someone else.

As the crisis continues I’m sure there will be more questions that we need answering, if you work in education (schools) and have further questions then you can email me nigel.beiley@unisonnorfolkcounty.co.uk or via my works mobile 07717517564

Further useful sources of advice are;

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

https://www.unison.org.uk/at-work/education-services/key-issues/covid-19-closures/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=LG%2013%202020%20%20-%20COVID-19%20Partial%20Closure%20Education&utm_source=Local%20Government&utm_content=specific%20statement%20for%20UK%20Education%20workers

Please all, keep safe.

Nigel Beiley
UNISON Education Officer (Norfolk)