You have probably heard the term HR used in school. HR stands for Human Resources and it deals with all aspects of how people in employment are managed. Developing your understanding of the principal HR issues makes a lot of sense because HR affects your life as a teacher.
HR And Employment Issues
Your terms and conditions of employment are important in your life as a teacher and probably the most important HR document in your possession is your contract of employment. It sets out what your employer expects of you. It indicates who you can turn to for support. It may also set out how your performance will be managed.
Another important employment matter you need to think about is your pension. It may be many years until you are due to receive a pension but you, and your employer, are making contributions into your pension every month. From time to time it makes sense to check how large a pension your contributions will deliver. If you wish, you can then seek advice about how to make additional contributions and what the impact of such a decision will be on the size of your pension.
Teachers And The Law
Employment law, in particular, shapes aspects of your employment and you need to be aware of how the law, and changes to the law, affect your work. For example, legislation governing direct and indirect discrimination affects your school’s way of working and how staff are treated. Health and Safety at Work and Data Protection legislation dictate how people at work should behave. Laws about redundancy affect how you will be treated, if you are made redundant.
Teachers And Performance
HR is often involved in making sure that there are policies and procedures in place to help you to be aware of your school’s rules. You may, for example, have a staff handbook that sets out what to do, if you are unwell and cannot come to school. Your handbook may set out how school trips and visits are to be organised and what to do if you find someone on the premises who should not be there.
Your ongoing development is important in the overall HR process, too. Your school has a responsibility to ensure you have the skills you need to complete the tasks that are asked of you. HR systems will help to make sure necessary development activities take place.
Teachers And HR
Find out who is responsible for HR in your school. You may have an HR specialist on your staff, or an external HR provider who works in your school on a weekly or monthly basis. Alternatively, there may be someone on the leadership team with responsibility for HR. Talk to these people about HR issues and ask them to signpost you to sources of additional information and further advice where necessary.
At DOHR we also blog about HR issues that are in the news and about good practice in HR.
Visit our website again soon so that you can keep up to date with HR, because teachers and HR really do go together.