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Teachers won't be added to shortage occupation list

The Migration Advisory Committee has published its long-awaited review of the shortage occupation list and has recommended that it is expanded to allow more migrant workers to fill a wider range of health, IT and engineering occupations. It has acknowledged recruitment difficulties in education, but doesn't recommend adding teacher roles to the list.

The shortage occupation list includes roles where there aren't enough resident workers to fill vacancies. Employers recruiting for jobs on that list don't have to conduct the ‘resident market test’ which shows no UK resident is available to do the role, before they offer it to a non EU worker.

Augar Review recommends school sixth-form funding boost

According to the TES, school sixth forms could see their funding boosted if the government implements a recommendation from the independent review of post-18 education and funding. Currently, 17-year-olds on full-time study programmes are funded at a base rate of £4,000 a year, but this figure is cut to £3,300 when they turn 18.

The Augar Review was commissioned by the DfE to examine post-18 education. It concludes:

  • There is no evidence to justify the lower base rate set for 18-year-olds in colleges compared to that for 16- and 17-year-olds
  • They do not believe that 18-year-olds require less teaching than younger pupils and may need more hours to successfully complete their course.
  • The reduction in the core funding rate for 18-year-olds should be reversed.

Do schools need a policy on periods?

Many schools are developing policies to support their menopausal employees going through "the change". But, very few have policies about periods. Are they necessary?

Last year, people in Sweden started debating a new government-funded initiative to provide a supportive environment for women during their periods. The BBC has published advice about how to create a period-friendly workplace and has questioned why we still find it so hard to discuss menstruation in the UK.

Menstruation affects 51% of the UK population at some point in their lives. However, despite the fact that 91% of women experience period pain at some point during their life and 57% say this has adversely affected their ability to work, many choose to suffer in silence. Period symptoms may also amount to a disability.

Implementing a policy can help your female staff understand what support is available to them and create a positive and more productive working environment.

Research indicates employers are failing to take pregnant workers' health seriously

Detailed research conducted by the Equality and Human Rights Commission into the experience of mothers at work has found that 41% of pregnant workers felt their work risked their health.

Mothers said their employers were less likely to tackle those risks they had identified. Almost two in five said it led to them taking maternity leave earlier than they wanted and more than a quarter taking sick leave. Plus, one in five of these mothers said they left because the risks were not resolved – 4% of all mothers.

Court of Appeal rule employers can enhance maternity pay without increasing shared parental pay

The Court of Appeal has handed down its judgment in the cases of Ali v Capita and Hextall v Chief Constable of Leicestershire Police.

Schools that enhance maternity pay don't discriminate against men taking shared parental leave paid at lower or statutory rates.

Education specialist Jenny Arrowsmith of Irwin Mitchell acted for the successful employer in Ali. Her thoughts on the case are available here.

Key Contact

Jenny Arrowsmith