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Wrap it all up before Christmas

Jane Martin provides a seasonal checklist for staffing committees

AS your school turns to the Christmas spirit, now is a good time to ensure that the governing body has undertaken all the pay and personnel responsibilities it should have tackled this term.

The determination of pay is the responsibility of the governing body but appraisal regulations require the head to appoint an appraiser for every teacher.

This means that the governing body needs to state clearly that the agreement of objectives for pay purposes is delegated to the head as part of this process.

(Deputy or assistant heads can agree objectives directly with the governing body if necessary.)

The governing body, through a relevant committee, needs to have determined the annual pay budget with effect from Sept-

ember 1.

Any governor employed to work at the school, other than the head, must withdraw from meetings where the pay or

performance appraisal of any employee is being discussed.

The head must withdraw where his or her pay is being

considered and any relevant person must withdraw where there is a conflict of interest or any doubt about impartiality (School Government Regulations 1999). It is usual for the head to attend such a discussion in an advisory capacity.

Assimilation to the new

classroom-teacher pay structure and the ledership group pay scale should have taken place, effective from September 1.

To help with the costs of this, the Government has made

available pound;900 for each deputy this year, and pound;2,356 for assistant heads. It will also cover 60 per cent of the cost of pay points awarded for good performance for all heads, deputies and advanced skills teachers.

The relevant committee also needs to have determined the Individual School Range (the range within which the salary has to fall) for the headteacher with effect from September 1.

The performance-management review of the headteacher by the appointed governors was due to have taken place this term (see Matters Arising, TES, November 3) but the Department for

Education and Employment has recognised that some schools have been unable to arrange a meeting with an adviser and has extended the deadline from the end of December to April 6, 2001.

Governors are still advised to have a preliminary discussion with the head about objectives before Christmas if they have not had a visit from an adviser. From next September objectives must be set by the end December.

The arrangements for the annual pay review should be set out in the school's pay policy. Model documents and pay and performance updates are now available on National Association of Headteachers' website. (

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