2019 Autumn Term 1

The know zone

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  • Balance the facts and the figures
    Business Leadership Specialist Hayley Dunn shares top tips on setting pay and conditions for school business leadership roles. More
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  • Mark my words
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Business Leadership Specialist Hayley Dunn shares top tips on setting pay and conditions for school business leadership roles.

Balance the facts and the figures

An increasing number of academies and other autonomous structures in education have afforded greater flexibility in the assessment of remuneration for school business leaders and school business managers. But, the number and frequency of calls to our Hotline tell us that schools sometimes need support and guidance in setting an appropriate level of pay and suitable conditions of service for school business leaders. The new ASCL guidance paper on this subject provides a useful source of information for school leaders (see www.ascl.org.uk/SBLPayConditions)

It is essential that due consideration is given to the job description and person specification for your school business leader, as these two documents inform most decisions about pay. Where does the business leader post fit within the context of other leadership roles within the existing or proposed structure? Is the role equivalent in status to that of other senior leadership positions, for example, deputy or assistant headteacher?

Analyse responsibilities

When determining the appropriate remuneration level for each post in your staffing structure, a useful starting point is to do an analysis of all the responsibilities of the roles to ensure that the amount of pay is fair and equitable. The post responsibilities could include:

  • the balance between leadership and management responsibilities
  • challenges that are specific to the role
  • the level of strategic responsibility and all other relevant considerations in the same way that they are now required to set leadership pay under the STPCD
  • size of the budget being managed
  • organisational financial challenges
  • the percentage of whole-school responsibility

Determine the conditions

When reviewing or determining a remuneration package, due consideration should also be given to determining the condition element, which could include:

  • diversity and equality
  • conditions of employment, such as pension contributions, holiday entitlement, term time versus full year and other options such as annualised hours
  • flexible working opportunities
  • payment of professional fees
  • professional development and training, including financial, mentoring, coaching and time support for undertaking qualifications; it is important to be aware that it is a requirement of membership for many professional institutions that professionals undertake a certain number of hours of continuing professional development (CPD) each year
  • wellbeing
  • other benefits

These are not exhaustive lists but do provide guiding principles on some of the more common indicators considered when evaluating pay and conditions that will essentially recruit and retain the right business leader(s) to your organisation. Itís important to evaluate the factors that are specific to your organisation and relate to your specific circumstances, because all schools are different.

Changing structures

Along with the indicators discussed above, academies will also need to consider changes to the business leadership roles when schools become multi-academy trusts, and when multi-academy trusts take on more schools, because often the responsibilities of the business leaders change and grow. It is often the case that the roles that see the most changes are that of the business leaders.

It is vital that any re-evaluation or re-structuring processes are carried out in full consultation with the postholder(s), and that due consideration is given to the impact that any changes may have. For example, if the role requires working across multiple sites, then any time spent travelling between sites must be accounted for within the individualís paid working hours and appropriate travel expenses paid.

Further information can be found in the Green Book, which any staff who enjoy Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE) protection will be covered by. We would advise employers to consult their HR providers for assistance in this process and any members to contact our Hotline for advice on 0116 299 1122.

Hayley Dunn
ASCL Business Leadership Specialist