3.4 NAG 3.4 Being A Good Employer

6.9.2018

P & P No: 3.4

Equal Employment Opportunities

Purposes:

This school has a commitment to removing inequity from the workplace and will make continuing efforts to maintain its status as an Equal Employment Opportunities employer. The Board of Trustees aims to identify and eliminate any aspects of policy or procedure that might cause or perpetuate (or tend to cause or perpetuate) inequalities of any person or group of people. This means there is a need to:

  • Establish and maintain affirmative action on behalf of all persons regardless of gender, age, race or disabilities.
  • Identify and address discriminatory practices and polices.
  • Provide opportunities that enhance the value and career opportunities of all staff members.
  • Provide a non-discriminatory, culturally sensitive and safe working environment for all staff.
  • The Board of Trustees maintains the policy of the person hired will be the best suited person to the situation at the time of appointment, regardless of gender, race, age, or disability.

Staff Personal Information Details

Purpose:

The School Office must hold these details so we are able to contact the correct people in case of an emergency in school hours.

Guidelines:

  • Emergency contact and medical details will be distributed by the Executive Officer at the start of each year along with any other annual documentation for staff.
  • Staff need to inform the school office when any of these details change over the course of the year.
  • Staff personal details will not be shared with anyone but the Executive Team and necessary administrative staff.
  • Arahunga has no involvement with emergencies that occur outside of Arahunga’s operation.

Staff Expenses

  • Staff are able to claim authorized expenses as outlined in the Collective Agreement provided they are authorised in advance by a member of the Executive Team.
  • Receipts must be produced in all cases.
  • Purchase orders must be gained for purchases over $50.

Please note unauthorised expense claims will not be reimbursed.

Sexual Harassment

Purposes:

  • To ensure a safe environment for all.
  • To ensure complaints are dealt with effectively.

Guidelines:

  • The guidelines for this procedure are those set down for Complaints/Conflict Resolution Procedures.
  • All personnel and students will be treated without discrimination of their gender.

Procedure for Use of Private Vehicles

Purpose:

There are times when it is necessary for staff to use their own transport in order to assist students to reach community participation and work experience venues.

Guidelines:

  • Arahunga School does not accept liability for any traffic infringement notices or parking tickets that are incurred by the staff member in any vehicle, whether this be a school vehicle or private vehicle.
  • All staff vehicles that are used to transport staff and students must have current registration and a current vehicle inspection certificate.
  • Staff must ensure that the vehicle is in a roadworthy condition, with appropriate vehicle inspection certificates, and that seat belts are available and will be used, and that they are aware of their personal responsibility, re: traffic infringement notices etc.
  • Both Support Staff and Teaching Staff can claim mileage for the authorized use only of private vehicles for school purposes at the end of each term.
  • Arahunga will only accept responsibility for mileage if the trip was sanctioned by Senior Management Team Member prior to it occurring.
  • Date, purpose of trip, and mileage are to be recorded for each trip where there is mixed use of a vehicle.
  • Private vehicles that are roadworthy and have appropriate legal paperwork and current safety checks are eligible for insurance cover under the schools’ insurer for work place use by a full and currently licensed driver.

Complaints/Conflict Resolution

Purpose:

The school must respond to complaints in a fair and consistent manner and in accordance with the relevant Employment Contracts, legislation and codes of conduct included in the school’s documentation.

Conflict is a normal part of the change process and is a creative opportunity – the driving force in improving situations and relationships. Having said this, it is still important to:

  • Establish a system to resolve conflict.
  • Ensure conflict is managed, not ignored.
  • Ensure consistency when dealing with complaints concerning school staff or students.
  • Put in place disciplinary and corrective action as required.
  • Ensure that complaints that allege any abuse (physical, emotional, sexual) are dealt with immediately, seriously and in a way which ensures the safety of all.

Guidelines:

  • All complaints should be dealt with at the lowest possible level.
  • In regards to specific and actionable Health and Safety complaints these may be dealt with by the Regional Manager and Principal outside of normal limitations on monetary, management and governance procedures in order to ensure everyone’s wellbeing. (Eg. Risk of electric shock may be avoided by the Regional Manager ordering a same day repair exceeding the usual financial authorisation limits to ensure safety of all in the vicinity and ensure minimal disruption to education of students.)

Making a complaint

A complaint should be made at the lowest level possible to preserve human dignity and wellbeing:

  • A complaint about a student, volunteer, teacher’s aide, should first be made to a teacher in the class or service that the complaint is associated with.If the complaint is about the class teacher it should be made to the appropriate Team Leader.
  • If the complaint is about a Team Leader, the complaint should be made to the appropriate Regional Manager.
  • If the complaint is about a Regional Manager the complaint should be made to the Principal, or in their absence, the Executive Officer.
  • If the complaint is about the Principal, the complaint should be made to the Chairperson of the Board of Trustees.

The complaint can be verbal or in writing.

  • When making a verbal complaint, or when discussing the complaint, the person making the complaint entitled to have a support person to accompany them.
  • If a person has made a verbal complaint, and is not satisfied with the response that they get as a result of this complaint, they should either make a verbal or written complaint to the next level of authority.
  • If the person is not satisfied with the response that they get as a result of this complaint to the next level of authority, they should make a written complaint to the next level of authority.
  • Where a complaint is received in writing the receiver will respond to complaint either in writing or by calling the person to a meeting to discuss/clarify the complaint.
  • Where the complaint is made verbally the complaint will be acknowledged verbally at the time of receipt.

Procedural notes:

  • Complaints are taken seriously, where there is an accusation the accused is considered innocent unless proven guilty, and the dignity and mana of both complainant and accused are to be respected, however, seperation of the two parties may need to occur in the first instance while issues are investigated.
  • In extenuating circumstances, where legislation mandates, such as allegations of abuse (see below), the accused may be suspended on full pay to allow a full investigation to take place. If this happens all possible efforts will be made to protect the accused’s privacy while the matter is under investigation and until legal advice has been sought from NZSTA regarding privacy issues specific to the individual allegation.

Responding to a complaint

If a teacher should receive a verbal or written complaint about a student, staff person or volunteer, they must:

  1. Decide if the complaint is of a serious nature. (Serious in this context means matters that may constitute physical, emotional or sexual abuse.)
    1. If it is of a serious nature see the section below, responding to a serious complaint.
      If it is not, the teacher may respond to the complaint but only after they have investigated whether the complaint is validated by, at the very least, discussing it with the subject of the complaint.
  2. The teacher must discuss this complaint with their supervising Team Leader.

When a Team Leader or Regional Manager receives a written complaint because the person who previously complained was not satisfied with the response of the class teacher, they will discuss this matter with the class teacher directly. If necessary, and appropriate, a meeting may be called with the person who complained and the staff member concerned in order to resolve the differences.

Responding to serious complaints i.e. allegations of possible abuse

Follow Arahunga’s Protected Disclosures Procedures strictly:

  • Any complaint that involves allegations of abuse, whether physical, emotional, sexual or verbal, must be treated with the utmost seriousness.
  • Any person who receives a complaint, whether verbally or in writing, that alleges actions that could constitute physical, psychological or sexual abuse, MUST immediately inform the Regional Manager or Executive Officer, except where the complaint involves the Regional Manager or the Executive Officer in which case the Principal of the school MUST be immediately informed.
  • The Regional Manager or Executive Officer will immediately inform both the Principal and the Chairperson of the Board of Trustees.
  • If the Regional Manager or Executive Officer is the subject of these complaints the Principal will immediately inform the Chairperson of the Board of Trustees.
  • If the Principal is the subject of these complaints the person receiving the complaint must immediately inform the Chairperson of the Board of Trustees.
  • The subject of any complaint that alleges actions that could constitute abuse MUST immediately be suspended with pay while the matter is investigated and their identity and details of allegations kept private to avoid contaminating any potential law enforcement investigation.
  • Any such allegation should be investigated and dealt with in consultation with NZSTA and NZEI and following their guidelines.
  • Conditions of employment will be reviewed at this time if necessary.
  • Allegations will be taken seriously and legal processes followed, but guilt will not be assumed.

Please note: If this happens all possible efforts must be made to protect the accused’s privacy while the matter is under investigation and until legal advice has been sought from NZSTA regarding privacy issues specific to the individual allegation.

Long Term Leave without Pay

Guidelines:

  • Leave will only be granted if the staff member is entitled to this leave under the collective employment agreement, and if it is to the Arahunga’s advantage.
  • Examples of ways this leave might be to the Arahunga’s advantage are when a staff member wishes to further their education or gain additional experience relevant to the position they hold.
  • The Board will only allow a maximum of one non-Executive Team person per region each year to be on long term leave without pay unless they consider the opportunity to be exceptionally beneficial to Arahunga.

Short Term Leave without Pay

Short term leave without pay is at the discretion of the Regional Manager who will take into account finances, staffing numbers, impact on students, staff, and community, etc.

Please note: Lack of relievers may mean short term leave without pay is not possible.

Leave with Pay

All leave with pay applications must be made on the Arahunga Leave Request Form, which is available at the office.

Guidelines:

  • The Board will approve applications for leave with pay for staff that have been selected to play/represent sport, culture or other identity specific activity at a national level.
  • This leave with pay will be approved for up to one week and only once per year.
  • Each application will be considered on its own merits and irrespective of how many other people have been granted this opportunity.

Short Term Leave with Pay

Up to 2 Working Days:
Applications for short term leave with pay for periods of up to 2 working days will be within the decision making of the Regional Manager, the Regional Manager will either make a decision or if necessary, the Regional Manager will refer the matter to the Principal.

Up to 5 Working Days:
Applications for short term leave with pay for periods of up to 5 working days will be within the decision making of the Principal, the Principal will either make a decision or if necessary, the Principal will refer the matter to the Board of Trustees.

Review schedule: Within 3 years

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *