Contact: 0191 2961296, Email: info@docere.co.uk

Supply Teaching Policies

On this page you’ll find a list of Docere’s policies including data protection & first aid. Simply click the hyperlink below to easily find the policy you are looking for.

Data Protection, Confidentiality and GDPR Policy

In connection with privacy policy for the www.docere.co.uk.

Overview of privacy policy for website

Docere.co.uk, trading as ‘Docere’

Our Privacy Policy, which will govern the way in which we process any personal information that you provide to us. We will notify you if the way in which we process your information is to change at any time via email. Our details are: Docere, whose registered office is located at 4 Bedford Terrace, North Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE29 0AW, Tel: 0191 2961296

You can access our home page and browse our site without disclosing your personal data, save information collected by cookies that we may use. Docere is committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected. Should we ask you to provide certain information by which you can be identified when using this website, then you can be assured that it will only be used in accordance with our privacy statement. Our privacy policy provides a clear understanding of how we collect, use, protect or otherwise handle your Personally Identifiable Information in accordance with our website.

When registering on our site, as appropriate, you may be asked to enter personal details such as; your name, email address, mailing address, phone number, employment status, resume details which contain these. We collect these details from you to offer you job listing services and personalised profile pages for your business and for members to offer CV retainment and the ability to apply for jobs on our website. We also collect credit card information from you for payments made to Docere in way of membership fees. We retain all membership and profile information indefinitely. If you would like us to delete your personal/business information, job listing or to remove a CV that you have uploaded please send an email to info@docere.co.uk and provide details of your request.

Data Protection, Confidentiality & GDPR Policy

Data protection

The Data Protection Act 2018 (https://www.gov.uk/data-protection)

The Data Protection Act 2018 (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2018/12/contents/enacted) controls how your personal information is used by organisations, businesses or the government. The Data Protection Act 2018 is the UK’s implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Docere has a responsibility to follow strict rules called ‘data protection principles’ as we use and hold personal data linked to our employees and candidates. Therefore, we must make sure that any information we hold is:

  • Used fairly, lawfully, and transparently
  • Used for specified, explicit purposes
  • Used in a way that is adequate, relevant, and limited to only what is necessary
  • Accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date
  • Kept for no longer than is necessary
  • Handled in a way that ensures appropriate security, including protection against unlawful or unauthorised processing, access, loss, destruction, or damage

There is stronger legal protection for more sensitive information, including:

  • Race
  • Ethnic background
  • Political opinions
  • Religious beliefs
  • Trade union membership
  • Genetics
  • Biometrics (where used for identification)
  • Health
  • Sex life or orientation

There are separate safeguards for personal data relating to criminal convictions and offences. This information would be linked to any DBS requests.

  • Docere acknowledges that under the Data Protection Act 2018, all employees and candidates have the right to find out what information we hold and store about you. These include the right to:
  • Be informed about how your data is being used
  • Access personal data
  • Have incorrect data updated
  • Have data erased
  • Stop or restrict the processing of your data
  • Data portability (allowing you to get and reuse your data for different services)
  • Object to how your data is processed in certain circumstances.

Confidentiality

Docere aims to strike a balance between encouraging openness, avoiding unnecessary secrecy and bureaucracy, and ensuring individual privacy is respected. Docere will adhere to principles of honesty, openness, and transparency in all its operational and organisational activities. There are times however when some information held by Docere must be regarded as confidential. In such circumstances all employees and candidates are required to maintain strict confidentiality regarding such information. The data covered by the confidentiality policy includes:

  • Information about Docere for example, its business plans and finances
  • Information about other organisations, including settings
  • Information about all individuals, where recorded electronically or in paper form.

When handling personal data and other confidential information with regards to Docere, settings, employees and candidates, it is important to consider and adhere to the following:

  • Even in the most innocent of conversations, do not discuss any part of your work that could cause either an individual or Docere embarrassment or harm
  • Be aware of who else may be listening, particularly in areas open to the public
  • Get into the habit of checking and clearing your work area and locking your desk and filing cabinets before leaving at the end of each day. It is acceptable to leave some work out, but lock away anything confidential 
  • Always lock your computer screen if you leave your desk unattended and log out completely when you have finished for the day
  • Never leave confidential information unattended, either put it in an envelope marked confidential or lock it away. 
  • Remember that information in the wrong hands can cause a lot of damage and unnecessary stress

When entering written correspondence with an individual that will contain personal data (including, for example, sensitive information such as health data), Docere advises that you should:

  • Check with the person concerned that they can be written to at their home address or make arrangements for letters to be collected or sent elsewhere
  • Check whether correspondence should be marked private and confidential

When collecting and/or recording information about a person:

  • Offer a private interview
  • If the conversation is over the telephone and someone else might hear, do not repeat aloud any personal information. If necessary, ask the person to say it again
  • Explain first why the information is needed and how it will be used and obtain their consent if required
  • If we need to collect it for legal or other purposes, we must Inform them of that 

When collecting sensitive personal data (for example, health information) we should explain: 

  • Who will have access to it
  • The implications of not giving the information
  • Any special procedures for protecting particularly sensitive information
  • If the individual does not agree, do not record, or pass on the information. Explain clearly its implications to the person
  • Do not ask questions that are not relevant

Working with computers

  • No disks, CDs or other portable storage media should be used to store personal data unless encrypted and unless authorised by Docere’s IT Department
  • All/any personal data stored on laptops should be encrypted
  • Large amounts of data that is transferred internally or externally, for example films, should be transferred using online platform, We Transfer. We Transfer protects files in transfer using transfer layer security, files are encrypted on their servers
  • Computers should be locked or users should log out to prevent access if computers are left unattended for any length of time
  • All user accounts must be protected by strong passwords and passwords to be held securely by the owner. Passwords should be changed every 4 months
  • When using e-mail addresses, external recipients should not be grouped unless permission has been obtained
  • The Bcc facility on e-mail should not be used as a mechanism for sharing or distributing personal data
  • Unless it is necessary no personal data should be transferred via email, if there is an occasion where this is required it should either be encrypted or password protected 

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

Guide to the General Data Protection Regulation https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-regulation and https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-data-protection/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-regulation-gdpr/.

Docere is committed to processing data in accordance with its responsibilities under GDPR. 

  • The Responsible Person shall take responsibility for the Charity’s ongoing compliance with this policy. (Mrs Veneta Callan)
  • This policy shall be reviewed at least annually. 
  • Docere shall register with the Information Commissioner’s Office as an organisation that processes personal data. 

Article 5 of the GDPR requires that personal data shall be:

  • Processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner in relation to individuals.
  • Collected for specified, explicit and legitimate purposes and not further processed in a manner that is incompatible with those purposes; further processing for archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific or historical research purposes or statistical purposes shall not be considered to be incompatible with the initial purposes;
  • Adequate, relevant, and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are processed.
  • Accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date; every reasonable step must be taken to ensure that personal data that are inaccurate, having regard to the purposes for which they are processed, are erased or rectified without delay;
  • Kept in a form which permits identification of data subjects for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which the personal data are processed; personal data may be stored for longer periods insofar as the personal data will be processed solely for archiving purposes in the public interest, scientific or historical research purposes or statistical purposes subject to implementation of the appropriate technical and organisational measures required by the GDPR in order to safeguard the rights and freedoms of individuals; and
  • Processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security of the personal data, including protection against unauthorised or unlawful processing and against accidental loss, destruction, or damage, using appropriate technical or organisational measures.

Docere acknowledges that:

  • All data processed must be done on one of the following lawful bases: consent, contract, legal obligation, vital interests, public task, or legitimate interests 
  • It will ensure that personal data are adequate, relevant, and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which they are processed. 
  • It shall take reasonable steps to ensure personal data is accurate. 
  • Where necessary for the lawful basis on which data is processed, steps shall be put in place to ensure that personal data is kept up to date. 
  • That personal data is kept for no longer than necessary, Docere shall put in place an archiving procedure for each area in which personal data is processed and review this process annually. This consider what data should/must be retained, for how long, and why

Docere acknowledges that with regards to the security of its data, it will:

  • Ensure that personal data is stored securely using modern software that is kept-up to date
  • Access to personal data shall be limited to personnel who need access and appropriate security should be in place to avoid unauthorised sharing of information
  • Ensure when personal data is deleted this should be done safely such that the data is irrecoverable
  • There is an appropriate back-up and disaster recovery solutions shall be in place

In the event of a breach of security leading to the accidental or unlawful destruction, loss, alteration, unauthorised disclosure of, or access to, personal data, Docere shall promptly assess the risk to people’s rights and freedoms and if appropriate report this breach to the ICO (https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/guide-to-data-protection/guide-to-the-general-data-protection-regulation-gdpr/

Staff Policy

Maternity Leave and Antenatal Care

Docere will not treat any employee less favourably because they are pregnant, absent on maternity leave or for any other reason connected with your pregnancy or maternity. Employees will not be discriminated against on grounds of pregnancy or maternity in the areas of training, selection, promotion, job security or in any other area of their terms and conditions of employment. Employees will not be excluded from communication and consultation because of absence due to pregnancy or childbirth. Employees will not be dismissed for a reason connected with pregnancy, childbirth, or related leave. Docere will ensure that these provisions apply equally to full time and part time workers, regardless of hours worked or length of service. During the employees’ period of maternity leave they will continue to accrue continuous service.

If at any time during the pregnancy the employee has any concerns or questions relating to health and safety or any other matter regarding maternity leave or antenatal care please speak to the manager.

Keeping Docere Informed

It is the employee’s responsibility to notify the manager of their pregnancy. The employee must notify Docere that they are pregnant and intend to take maternity leave no later than the 15th week prior to your Expected Week of Childbirth (EWC). Docere must also be informed of the employees EWC.

The employee must provide written confirmation of the pregnancy and the date on which they intend to start maternity leave at least 28 calendar days before the start of the maternity leave, this can be provided earlier if the employee wishes to do so.

The employee must provide medical evidence that they are pregnant. Their midwife will provide a MAT B1 form for this purpose at some time after the 20th week of pregnancy. 

Please note that an employee cannot return to work within two weeks of giving birth. This is known as the Compulsory Maternity Leave period.

Antenatal Care

The employee will be entitled to paid time off during working hours in order to receive antenatal care on the advice of their Doctor, Midwife or Health Visitor. The employee will be required to produce an appointment card or hospital document showing that an appointment has been made. Antenatal care may be extended to include relaxation or similar kinds of classes but only where these are to be attended on medical advice. The employee will be required to provide evidence of this. 

Additional Information

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/part/5/chapter/3/crossheading/pregnancy-and-maternity-equality

Paternity Leave

Paternity leave and pay are available to the employee if they will have parental responsibility for a new-born child, or if they are adopting a child and their spouse/partner is taking adoption leave.

Docere recognises that to be eligible for paternity leave and pay:

  • The employee must have or expect to have responsibility for the child’s upbringing
  • The employee must be the biological father of the child or the mother’s husband or partner (male or female)
  • The employee can only take paternity leave to care for their new child or support the mother of the baby or both

Docere will support two weeks of paternity leave if you meet the eligibility criteria stated. Paternity leave equates to ten days for full-time staff or a pro-rated entitlement for part-time staff (for example an employee who works three days a week is entitled to two of their working weeks as paternity leave, so six days in total).

Docere will support two weeks of paternity leave if you meet the eligibility criteria stated. Paternity leave equates to ten days for full-time staff or a pro-rated entitlement for part-time staff (for example an employee who works three days a week is entitled to two of their working weeks as paternity leave, so six days in total).

Paternity leave can be taken as either two consecutive weeks or as two separate weeks but cannot be taken as individual days (this applies equally to full and part-time staff).

Docere recognises that it is difficult to predict exactly when paternity leave is required to start, but if an employee wishes to take paternity leave, they must inform the manager as early as possible of the likely dates of absence. Docere will require evidence to support the paternity leave request, for example a photocopy of the maternity certificate (MAT B1) or documents from the adoption agency. Paternity leave may start on any day of the week on or following the child’s birth date and must be completed within 56 days of the actual date of birth of the child.

Docere will not treat any employee less favourably because they are on or wish to take paternity leave. Employees will not be discriminated against on grounds of paternity leave in the areas of training, selection, promotion, job security or in any other terms and conditions of employment.

Additional Information

Parental Leave

Docere advises that all parental leave is unpaid.

Parental leave is the right for employees to take time off work without pay to look after a child or decide for the child’s welfare. Docere recognises that parents can use it to spend more time with children and strike a better balance between their work and family commitments and fully that there are different entitlements for parents of a disabled child.

Docere acknowledges that an employee has the right to take unpaid parental leave provided that they are named on the birth certificate as a parent of a child (or have acquired legal parental responsibility for a child under the Children Act 1989) or if they have adopted the child. Docere acknowledges the employees right to take parental leave lasts until the child’s 18th birthday in line with The Maternity and Parental Leave Regulations 1999. (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1999/3312/contents/made)

The Maternity and Parental Leave Regulations 1999 identifies that the pattern in which leave can be taken differs depending on whether or not the child is disabled. 

Children Who Are Not Disabled

  • Employees are entitled to 18 weeks unpaid leave for each individual child (this includes multiple births such as twins etc.)
  • Any leave taken with past employers will count towards the 18-week limit. 
  • A maximum of four weeks parental leave can be taken in any one year
  • Leave must be taken in blocks of a week
  • Parental leave taken for part of a week counts as one full week of parental leave

Children Who Are Not Disabled

  • Employees are entitled to 18 weeks unpaid leave for each individual child (this includes multiple births such as twins etc.)
  • Any leave taken with past employers will count towards the 18-week limit. 
  • There is no maximum number of weeks allowed in any one year for leave taken for the care of a disabled child (apart from the overall 18-week limit mentioned above). 
  • Parental leave for a disabled child can be taken as single days or multiples of single days.

Docere will not treat any employee less favourably because they are on or wish to take parental leave. Employees will not be discriminated against on grounds of parental leave in the areas of training, selection, promotion, job security or in any other terms and conditions of employment.

Additional Information

Flexible Working (Including Working from Home)

Docere has a commitment to valuing diversity and recognises that flexible working hours provide benefits to both employees and to Docere as the employer. Flexible working including home working enables Docere to provide effective arrangements for a flexible system of attendance to help employees to manage their daily hours of work to suit their individual needs and the needs of the organisation. Home working also allows for out of hours working. 

Docere advises it may not always be possible to accommodate the needs of individual employees, and in these circumstances, employees will be given a full explanation of the reasons for not applying full flexible working hours terms to a position. However, no employee is specifically excluded from this policy, and it is Docere’s policy to allow flexible working hours wherever possible and to fit the needs of the organisation. 

Docere recognises that there is a requirement to complete a formal record of hours worked to monitor flexible working practices.

The employee who has flexible working, will be required to focus on the achievement of key activities and personal objectives agreed with the manager. Communications must be completed within every 24-hour period so the manager is aware of progress, the success and can monitor the effectiveness of the arrangement. 

Docere will encourage and recommend that employees take appropriate breaks and should monitor hours to ensure that a sensible work-life balance is achieved. However, the employee must not work beyond their contracted hours, unless prior consent has been confirmed by the manager. 

The success of flexible working depends on trust and any employee found to be deliberately abusing this trust will have any flexible working agreement cancelled.

The Working Time Regulations 1998

*http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/1998/1833/contents/made

Working Time’ means any period during which the employee is working, is at the employer’s disposal and is carrying out their activities or duties. 

Working time with regards to flexible working at Docere includes:

  • Any period during which the employee is receiving training in connection with the job
  • Time spent waiting at the place of work for work to be allocated
  • Time spent working at home

Additional Information

Staff Performance Policy

Docere adheres to the expectations that its performance management describes the arrangements it uses to maintain and improve the performance of all employees so that it can successfully achieve its goals. 

Docere’s performance management includes:

  • Employees being set performance measurements
  • Meetings between a manager and each member of staff to discuss their performance
  • Assessing employees against their performance measures
  • A record of performance being kept

Docere identifies that only good performance management will enable them to get the best outcome for the business as a whole and the workforce. If performance is not managed well, employees are unlikely to perform at their best.

Docere understands that good performance management arrangements can support it to:

  • Motivate employees
  • Ensure all employees are making valuable contributions towards the organisational goals
  • Develop employees
  • Recognise and acknowledge the good work of employees
  • Deliver tasks and projects quickly and to required standards
  • Identify and improve poor performance effectively

Docere will maintain regular performance management arrangements with all employees, to facilitate effective and appropriate professional discussions regarding job roles. Docere recognises that performance management arrangements are important so that the business can be monitored and reviewed to ensure it is meeting its strategic direction.

Docere prides itself on the ongoing development of all its employees. The manager will regularly talk with their team members about what opportunities may be available and listen to what sort of development they might be interested in.

An annual appraisal or regular review may:

  • Provide an opportunity for Docere to outline its general plan for the future of the business and workforce
  • Support Docere and the employee identify the employee’s future work preferences
  • Include an annual salary review
  • Must not include any discriminatory remarks or actions

Docere identifies that an Annual Review will be completed in the anniversary month of an employee’s start date.

Docere identifies that a Regular Review will be completed quarterly, or more often if the employee requests. 

Staff Training and Development Policy

Docere, is fully committed to ensuring that all employees have the relevant knowledge, skills, and expertise to perform their work to consistently high standards and to achieve their full potential.  We recognise that the training and development of our employees is fundamental to the improvement of our operational performance and the achievement of company strategy and goals. Docere will therefore strive to make training and development an integral part of our operations and to follow a continuous process of appraisal, training and development.

In accordance with Docere’s Equal Opportunities Policy, all employees are treated equally in the provision of training and development opportunities and are provided with equal access to training and development opportunities relevant to their needs.

It is the responsibility of the Manager to:

  • Identify and consider training and development as an integral part of the strategic planning process.
  • Provide adequate resources for training and development across the company
  • Evaluate the efficiency and effectiveness of training and development
  • Monitor the efficiency and effectiveness of this policy
  • Ensure that the training and development needs of all employees are assessed and provided for in accordance with this policy
  • Agree and provide appropriate and cost-effective training and development solutions

All employees are responsible for: 

  • Identifying their own training and development needs and bringing these to the attention of the Manager
  • Undertaking training and development activities which will enable them to perform their work efficiently and effectively
  • Managing their own learning and professional updating  

Docere advises that:

  • Training and development will be provided only where needs exist
  • The Manager will identify the training needs of their employees via discussion through appraisails, reviews and supervisions
  • Training and development needs, once identified will be collated centrally and priorities assessed 
  • All training and development activities must be approved in writing, in advance by the Manager 
  • The Manager will determine the annual budget available and formulate a strategy for the deployment and expenditure of available resources 
  • All training and development activities will be evaluated
  • At company level, the Manager will be responsible for evaluating all training and development activities against the company’s strategy and goals on an annual basis.   

Induction

All new employees to the company will receive appropriate induction training. 

Health and Safety Training

All employees will be provided with adequate health and safety training, including information on emergency procedures, before they start their employment. The need for health and safety training will be reassessed on a regular basis and when there has been a change in operating procedures.  Retraining and/or refresher training will be provided whenever necessary to all employees.

Professional Expectations Policy

When working with colleagues, students & young people.

Working With Students & Young People

Excellent teachers/teaching assistant’s:

  • Never (ever) swear whilst in the setting
  • Never shout at children or young people
  •  Always moderate their use of colloquialisms (slang) – always imagine you are teaching in front of an Ofsted inspector!
  • Never use “skewed banter” i.e. ‘picking on’ or ridiculing learners – consider The Equality Act 2010
  • Never have any physical contact with children and young people
  • Never criticise Docere, colleagues, other schools/colleges, or employers
  • Never promise children and young people anything they cannot deliver or have control over
  • Never show favouritism
  • Always show an interest in all the children and young people
  • Are always consistent with deadlines, marking and assessment
  • Demonstrate to children and young people how objective judgements are made (i.e. in marking, assessing)
  • Never discuss the ‘issues’, home lives, the progress of children and young people with other children and young people, or others – please also consider GDPR
  • Encourage children and young people to ask lots of questions
  • Our helpful and supportive to all in the setting
  • Never give personal information about themselves or colleagues or children and young people
  • Always develop teaching practices that recognise and accommodate diversity
  • Always differentiate their teaching &amp, learning strategies for each child or young
  • Person
  • Consistently reinforce the policies and procedures of the setting
  • Always make the effort to enrich the curriculum
  • Ensure all children and young people know when their assessment deadlines are, at all times
  • Always tell children and young people when they can expect to work back or expect to be assessed and stick to that date
  • Always challenge discriminatory (racism, sexism, ageism) remarks or bullying in classes
  • Will not allow children and young people to openly criticise other staff or other staff’s lessons, nor should they offer an opinion on the matter
  • Always respect, secure, and ensure the safety of any submitted work
  • Always ensure children and young people are aware of what is expected of them at every step of their journey, through the use of a valid, accurate and current curriculum plan
  • Always remember that children and young people are not their ‘mates’.
  • Actively support the settings commitment to the Learner Voice

Working With Colleagues

Excellent teachers/tutors/assessors:

  • Never swear or shout at colleagues
  • Do not ‘pull rank’ on each other
  • Always behave impeccably &amp, professionally with colleagues
  • Always conduct professional relationships with colleagues in ways that are consistent with principles of equity, fairness, and respect for others
  • Treat each other the way you expect to be treated
  • Ensure that ‘banter’ is not offensive, over-powering or damaging to others
  • Always share their teaching expertise & resources with each other
  • Always have honest and open professional discussions which focus on children and young people/teaching & learning which does not get personal
  • Never purposefully exclude staff in work-related social activities
  • Are always mutually supportive in your teaching teams
  • Are always punctual and prepared for all meetings
  • Keep a tidy staff room/area – clear up after yourself and keep your things in order

Safeguarding & Safer Recruitment Policy

Docere adheres to the NSPCC statement: “Everyone has a responsibility to keep children and young people safe(nspcc.org.uk).

Education providers, social work teams and any other employers that hire people to work with children and young people need to understand a Safer Recruitment policy. Safer Recruitment is designed to protect children’s welfare at every point where they meet professionals in a safeguarding role. The overall purpose of Safer Recruitment is to help identify and deter or reject individuals who are deemed to be at risk of abusing children. The recruitment legislation enforces pre-employment checks for all prospective staff to seek out anyone who may not be suitable to work with children and vulnerable young people. Every employer should already have a recruitment policy in place to ensure job applicants are considered equally and fairly, and are not discriminated against based on their race, nationality, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, marital or civil partner status, disability or age. Safer Recruitment takes this further; pre-employment checks make sure that applicants’ references have been cross-checked and that they have proof of identity. It also ensures that criminal convictions have been declared and that candidates have an up-to-date DBS certificate that they can provide evidence of, prior to employment.

Docere is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and has an expectation that all its staff share this commitment.

Docere is fully compliant with the:

The Department for Education (DfE) requires schools to keep a central record of the vetting checks made on all staff including those who work on supply via an agency. With this in mind, Docere will email a copy of the completed Verification of Checks Form prior to any member of staff being allocated to the setting. This will identify that the mandatory checks required by the documents stated above have been completed. 

Docere confirms that the setting may use the Verification of Checks Form as evidence for future OfSTED Inspections.

DBS Code of Practise

Every candidate accepted for registration as a member of Docere must have a current and valid enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service certificate (DBS certificate), which is registered with the DBS Update Service. https://www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service This certificate must be valid to the Child Workforce. 

In line with the requirements of The Recruitment & Employment Confederation https://www.rec.uk.com/ all DBS certificates are checked annually, via the DBS Update Service, to ensure that the DBS certificate sighted by Docere is current. 

Docere will accept enhanced DBS certificates valid for the child workforce when:

  • Docere has obtained the certificate for you and it was issued within the last 12 months,and on the understanding that it will be checked using the Update Service annually from the date ofissue noted on the DBS certificate. If an Update Service check cannot be undertaken at the end of the12 month period from date of issue, a new DBS certificate will need to be obtained by Docere for the member of staff at the member of staff cost.
  • Another agency or employer has obtained the certificate for you, and it can be verified by an Update Service check. If an Update Service check cannot be undertaken, a new DBS certificate will need to be obtained via Docere.
  • The original of the DBS certificate must be presented at the individual’s registration interview. DBS certificates become invalid if the candidate has a gap of three months or more in education-based employment (excluding the 6-week summer break for schools). In these circumstances a new disclosure certificate must be obtained if the current certificate cannot be verified by the candidate’s subscription to the Update Service.
  • Docere must sight the original copy of the DBS certificate. Docere does not accept scanned or photocopied copies of DBS certificates.
  • Docere will complete a risk assessment on all DBS certificates which contain information, to ascertain whether or not the candidate is suitable for placement in an education setting.
  • DBS certificates and the information they contain are shared only with those who need to have access to them in the course of their duties and not passed to any third-party persons not authorised to receive them. 
  • Docere will advise every candidate to carry the DBS certificate to each assignment to assist the record keeping of settings. Docere recommends that the candidate shows the setting their DBS certificate alongside the Verification of Checks Form.
  • As far as reasonably possible, Docere will ensure recipients of DBS certificate information do not discriminate against any individual on the basis of information contained on the certificate. A criminal record will not necessarily be a bar to obtaining a position and individuals can be assured that information contained on the DBS certificate will not be used unfairly. Any matters revealed on the DBS certificate will be discussed with the applicant before acceptance of registration with Docere. Any decision to decline the individual against registration with Docere will be made at senior level and will be handled with the utmost sensitivity.
  • DBS certificates are stored securely in each office in accordance with DBS storage policies. The date of issue and unique reference number for DBS certificates are recorded on the secure database.
  • Docere will co-operate with requests from the Disclosure and Barring Service to complete quality assurance checks as to the proper use and safekeeping of DBS certificate information and will report to the DBS any suspected malpractice in relation to this Code of Practice or any suspected offences in relation to the misuse of DBS certificate information.

Dealing with Allegations

Docere will ensure that any allegation of abuse made against any staff member in an education setting is dealt with fairly, quickly, and consistently, that provides effective protection for the child, and at the same time supports the individual who is subject to the allegation.

Docere would require that, the setting and the individual:

  • Report the allegation to the Manager of Docere 
  • Immediately arrange to meet with the Manager to discuss the allegation, and to prepare a written statement which provides his / her account of the situation in which the allegation was made.
  • All staff are advised that during the investigation of an allegation, they will not be placed into a school or education setting until the allegation has been satisfactorily resolved. 
  • The Manager will keep the individual informed of the progress of the case and will consider what other support is appropriate for them, considering their wellbeing and health.
  • Docere will work closely all parties involved, including the setting, Local Authority Designated Officer, Social Services and Police. It will act on any requirements put in place during the process, whether to support the individual’s return to work, or referral to the Disclosure and Barring Service and / or the National College of Teaching and Leadership.

Dealing with Allegations

At Docere vetting and monitoring does not stop once individuals are accepted as a member of staff. Regular performance feedback reports, ongoing auditing of files ensure the continued suitability of teachers and teaching assistants.

Audit of Staff Files

No individual is deployed to a setting unless all mandatory vetting checks have been completed.

Staff files are reviewed monthly and where expiry dates are due, checks are renewed as required.

Managers ensure staff files are audited correctly to ensure vetting standards are maintained.

Monitoring of Staff Performance

Verbal feedback is gathered on all individuals following day-to-day placements.

Formal written feedback is gained following a long-term placement.

Docere monitor feedback to support professional development, affirm expectations and select the most appropriate candidate for each position.

Health and Safety Policy

Including First Aid Expectations.

The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 (*https://www.hse.gov.uk/legislation/hswa.html) states that it shall be the duty of every employer to ensure, so far as it is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of all its employees. Docere takes all steps within its power to meet this responsibility.

The Act further states that it will be the duty of every employee, while at work, to take reasonable care for the health of themselves and of other persons who may be affected by their acts or omissions and to co-operate fully with their employer to carry out their responsibilities.

The manager and any “appointed persons” are responsible for ensuring that there is due regard for health and safety at work whilst employees are carrying out their duties. 

Docere will provide all employees with the necessary information, training and equipment to ensure safe and healthy working conditions. Docere will take reasonable steps to identify any known risks concerning Health and Safety and satisfy itself, as the employer, that they have taken steps to control, prevent and minimise those known risks. Docere will ensure that there is a “Competent Person” (*https://www.hse.gov.uk/involvement/competentperson.html) with regards to Health and Safety at Work, who holds the appropriate qualification.

Docere has an expectation that all activities and work will be carried out in a safe manner and we will ensure the health, safety and welfare of our employees and others who may be affected by our activities. Appropriate management of health and safety issues is seen as an integral part of the efficient management of Docere’s activities, and critical to developing a professional culture and establishing and maintaining a solid reputation with all of our settings and employees.

Docere does not currently have a Health and Safety Committee but should this become necessary then this will be set up following legislative guidelines.

Docere’s Responsibilities & Arrangements to Implement the Health and Safety Policy.

As and when necessary, Docere will arrange for Basic First Aid training to be provided to employees. (*https://www.firstaidforfree.com/) There may occasions when Docere will be required to distribute Health and Safety and/or First Aid bulletins and notes its employees.

Docere will issue Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) as and when any employment requires such issue. Items to be made available may include disposable gloves, aprons, and hand sanitizers. They will ensure all employees are fully briefed and understand what PPE (personal protective equipment) is required for a particular setting and provide this free of charge if required.

Docere will ensure that effective and appropriate Risk Assessments are completed by a suitably qualified employee where required.

 *(https://www.hse.gov.uk/involvement/riskassessments.html) 

Docere will maintain its facilities, equipment, and implement systems of work that are safe and without risks to health

Docere will ensure that all employees have got the relevant qualifications to carry out the duties of their role.

*(https://www.highspeedtraining.co.uk/health-and-safety/online-level-1-health-and-safety-training)

Docere will provide and maintain a working environment for employees that is safe and without risks to health and is adequate with regards to facilities and arrangements for their welfare at work.

Docere will ensure that all employees know how to raise Health and Safety concerns either to the setting or to directly to Docere as the employer.

Docere will not engage with a setting unless they are satisfied that any employees Health and Safety will be protected.

Docere will arrange the appropriate fire-certificates for the office, the proper maintenance of fire-fighting equipment including regular fire drills.

Docere will ensure that this policy is kept up to date to reflect changes in legislation and/or circumstances of the business.

Employees Responsibilities

  • To read and understand the Docere’s health and safety policy and to ensure that its contents are being effectively carried out
  • Work in a safe and efficient way 
  • Set high standards of health and safety by personal example
  • Demonstrate positive health and safety practice as normal and encourage others to do so
  • Refrain from doing anything which constitutes a danger to themselves or others
  • Ensure that any equipment issued to you for which you are responsible is correctly used and safely stored
  • Be responsible for good housekeeping in the area and/or setting you are working
  • Co-operate with Docere to achieve a healthy and safe workplace and to take reasonable care of yourself and others
  • If you identify a health or safety problem; any situations or practices which may lead to injuries or ill health which you are not able to correct effectively, you must straightaway inform the manager or Appointed Person.
  • Ensure you are wearing the correct PPE, where required.

Good Housekeeping

Much of health and safety can be positively actioned via good housekeeping and sensible working practices. By following these points highlighted ensures accidents can be avoided:

  • Do not allow cables to trail across the floor.
  • Clear any spillages quickly.
  • Make sure that you are on solid footing. Slipping or twisting whilst walking or lifting can cause injury.
  • Never reach above your height. Ask for help.

First Aid Expectations

All employees have access to a First Aid Kit and Accident Book. The Accident Book is stored safely and securely at 4 Bedford Terrace, North Shields, Tyne & Wear, NE29 0AW. Docere will provide a Basic First Aid Kit (https://www.hse.gov.uk/simple-health-safety/firstaid/what-to-put-in-your-first-aid-kit.htm) to any employee required to use their own vehicle for business purpose. It is expected that this will be stored in the boot of their vehicle. These employees will be provided with Basic First Aid Training. ( https://www.firstaidforfree.com/)  Docere will ensure that there are two Appointed First Aiders who hold First Aid in the Workplace qualifications. (https://www.hse.gov.uk/pubns/indg214.pdf) (https://www.sja.org.uk/courses/workplace-first-aid/emergency-first-aid/book-efaw/)

A list of employees with Emergency First Aid at Work qualifications and Basic First Aid qualifications will be displayed at 4 Bedford Terrace, North Shields, Tyne & Wear, NE29 0AW.

Employees who are employed in settings, are expected to adhere to the setting Health and Safety / First Aid Policy and procedure and should ensure they are aware of its contents prior to starting any placements. The setting will generally have their own Appointed First Aiders who can respond quickly and efficiently to any incidents or accidents.

However, Docere advises all employees to complete a Basic First Course. (https://www.firstaidforfree.com/)

Eyesight Screening Policy

Including workplace provisions.

In accordance with our health and safety policy, Docere Is fully committed to continuous improvement in the management of al significant health and safety risks. Docere, will fully meet its legal requirements to provide a safe and healthy working environment for all staff.

The law says employers must arrange an eye test for display screen equipment (DSE) users if they ask for one and provide glasses if an employee needs them only for DSE use. DSE work does not cause permanent damage to the eyes. But long spells of DSE work can lead to tired eyes, discomfort, temporary short-sightedness, and headaches.*(https://www.hse.gov.uk/msd/dse/eye-tests.htm#:~:text=The%20law%20says%20employers%20must,tired%20eyes)

Eyesight Screening Policy

The purpose of the policy is to ensure employees required to use Display Screen Equipment (DSE) do so safely and without risk to their eyesight.

Docere will contribute a maximum of £25 towards one eye test in any twelve-month period.

Docere will contribute to the cost of spectacles specifically prescribed for use with Visual Display Units (VDU) only. This cost needs to be agreed before the purchase.

Provision of Workstation Equipment.

Docere, is fully aware of the need for its employees to have a comfortable workstation and will listen to any concern’s employees have about their workstation.

Where reasonable and in accordance with any risk assessment process, Docere will provide equipment (for example, a monitor stand) to ensure an employee’s comfort at their workstation.
* (https://www.hse.gov.uk/msd/dse/)

Recruitment of Ex-Offenders Policy

Docere will ensure that this document is made available to all DBS applicants at the start of any recruitment process.

As an organisation considering a potential employees suitability for positions which are included in The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (Amendment) (England and

Wales) Order 2013 (https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukdsi/2013/9780111537718) using criminal record checks processed through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), Docere complies fully with the DBS Code of Practice (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dbs-code-of-practice) and undertakes to treat all potential employees fairly.

Docere will not discriminate unfairly against any subject of a criminal record check on the basis of a conviction or other information revealed, within any compulsory educational check prior to being registered for employment within any setting.

Docere will only ask an individual to provide details of convictions and cautions that they are legally entitled to know about. Where a DBS certificate at either standard or enhanced level can legally be requested from guidance within either The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (Amendment) (England and Wales) Order 2013 (https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukdsi/2013/9780111537718) or the Police Act 1997 (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1997/50/contents).

Docere will only ask an individual about convictions and cautions that are not protected. 

Docere is committed to the fair treatment of its employees, potential employees or users of its services, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, responsibilities for dependents, age, physical/mental disability or offending background in line with The Equality Act 2010. (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

Docere actively promotes equality of opportunity for all with the right mix of talent, skills and potential and welcomes applications from a wide range of candidates, including those with criminal records

Docere select all candidates for interview based on their skills, qualifications and experience.

Docere will ensure that positions where a criminal record check is identified as necessary, all application forms, job adverts and recruitment briefs will contain a statement that an application for a DBS certificate will be submitted in the event of the individual being offered the position.

Docere will ensure that all those who are involved in the recruitment process have been suitably trained to identify and assess the relevance and circumstances of offences, in line with the expectations of the DBS Code of Practice.
(https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dbs-code-of-practice).

Docere will ensure that all those who are involved in the recruitment process have been suitably trained and have received appropriate guidance and training in the relevant legislation relating to the employment of ex-offenders through The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (Amendment) (England and Wales) Order 2013. (https://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukdsi/2013/9780111537718 )

  • Within a private discussion, with a member of staff who is suitably trained, Docere will ensure that an open and measured discussion takes place on the subject of any offences or other matter that might be relevant to the position. Failure, by a potential employee, to reveal information that is directly relevant to the position sought, within a setting, could lead to the withdrawal of an offer of employment. Docere will ensure that any matter revealed on a DBS certificate with the potential employee seeking a position within a setting, will be discussed, and recorded, before withdrawing any offer of employment.
  • Docere will ensure that every potential employee who is subject to a criminal record check being submitted to DBS is aware of the existence of the DBS Code of Practice (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dbs-code-of-practice) and will provide either an electronic copy of a paper copy available, on request.

Additional Information

Anti-Racism Statement

In relation to employees who are employed to support settings.

Like bullying, racism can exist in any school, even those where all the students are made up of one ethnicity. However, the schools with which we work with, are within an increasingly multi-cultural community. To support any employee we place in a setting, Docere has principles in place to ensure that racism can be quickly stopped if it were to occur.

The Stephen Lawrence Enquiry Report defines racism as: ‘conduct or words which advantage or disadvantage people because of their colour, culture or ethnic origin’. A racist incident is defined as ‘any incident which is perceived as racist by the victim or any other person’.
(https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/277111/4262.pdf)

Racist behaviour is any hostile or offensive act or expression by a person of one racial/ethnic origin against a person/group of another racial/ethnic origin. It can also be an incitement to act or express themselves in such a manner that would interfere with the peace and comfort of a person/group, regardless of whether that person/group are present or not.

Racist behaviour in an educational institution can include:

  • Physical assault because of colour and/or ethnicity
  • Derogatory name-calling, insults and racist jokes
  • Racist graffiti
  • Provocative behaviour e.g. wearing racist badges/insignia
  • Bringing racist materials e.g. leaflets, magazines into school
  • Verbal abuse/threats
  • Incitement of others to behave in a racist way (whether the ethnic group are aware or not)
  • Racist comments during lessons
  • Ridicule of cultural differences e.g. food, music, dress etc
  • Refusal to cooperate with other people because of their colour and/or ethnicity.

The schools with whom Docere work provide a safe and secure environment where everyone can learn irrespective of their nationality, ethnic background, or faith. It is not possible to achieve this if anyone faces prejudice or hostility. Racism is wrong.

Therefore, Docere will do all that it can to prevent racist behaviours affecting our placed employees.

Equal Opportunities & Diversity Policy

Including Employee Information Handout (prior to entering a setting)

Docere embraces diversity and aims to promote the benefits of diversity in all areas of our business activities. We aim to develop a business culture that reflects this. In all areas of recruitment, we strive to ensure that we have a diverse employee base.

The success of the Docere depends on our people. We are committed to valuing diversity and promoting equality for everyone within the company. Competent and motivated employees are essential in today’s competitive environment and therefore Docere requires the best individuals within its employee base. We recognise the varied contributions that a diverse workforce brings to the company and we are committed to drawing on the different perspectives and experiences of individuals which will add value to the way we operate.

The aim of this policy is to communicate the commitment of Docere to the promotion of equality of opportunity, to ensure that all employees receive fair treatment regardless of their gender, marital or civil partnership status, having or not having dependants, sexual orientation, race, nationality, ethnic and national origin, disability, age, trade union membership, religious or political beliefs, work location and working hours.

Docere will:

  • Promote a good and harmonious working environment in which all individuals are treated with respect
  • Prevent occurrences of unlawful direct discrimination, indirect discrimination, harassment and victimisation
  • Fulfil all our legal obligations under the equality legislation and associated codes of practice
  • Complying with our own equal opportunities policy and any associated policies 
  • Taking lawful affirmative or positive action, where appropriate 
  • Regarding all breaches of equal opportunities policy as misconduct which could lead to disciplinary proceedings

We are opposed to all forms of unlawful and unfair discrimination. All employees will be treated fairly and will not be discriminated against on any of the above grounds. Decisions about recruitment and selection, promotion, training, or any other benefit will be made objectively and without unlawful discrimination.

We do this by adhering to all equal opportunities legislation and ensuring that we are fair, objective, transparent and free from discrimination in all our systems, processes, procedures, activities and decisions. Unlawful discrimination will not be tolerated. We are committed to promoting a positive work environment for our employees and ensuring employees are given every opportunity to fulfil their potential.

Docere is committed to diversity and will promote diversity for all employees and prospective employees. We will continuously review all aspects of recruitment to avoid unlawful discrimination. We will treat everyone equally and will not discriminate on the grounds of an individual’s “protected characteristic” under the Equality Act 2010

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/equality-act-2010-guidance

Protected Characteristics:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender re-assignment
  • Marriage and civil partnership
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Race
  • Religion or belief
  • Sex and sexual orientation
  • Equality commitments and responsibilities

Docere are committed to promoting equality of opportunity for all persons.

Unlawful discrimination occurs in the following circumstances:

Direct Discrimination

Direct discrimination occurs when an individual is treated less favourably because of a protected characteristic. Treating someone less favourably means treating them badly in comparison to others that do not have that protected characteristic.

It is unlawful for Docere to discriminate against an individual on the grounds of a protected characteristic.

Direct discrimination can take place even if the individual does not have the protected characteristic but is treated less favourably because it is assumed the individual has the protected characteristic or is associated with someone that has the protected characteristic.

Direct discrimination would also occur if Docere accepted and acted upon instructions from a prospective setting which states that certain persons are unacceptable due to a protected characteristic unless an exception applies. The Act contains provisions that permit specifying a requirement that an individual must have a protected characteristic in order to undertake a job. These provisions are referred to as occupational requirements. Where there is an occupational requirement then the setting must show that applying the requirement is a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim, i.e. the setting must be able to objectively justify applying the requirement. An occupational requirement does not allow a setting to employ someone on less favourable terms or to subject an individual to any other detriment. Neither does an occupational requirement provide an excuse against harassment or victimisation of an individual who does not have the occupational requirement.

Indirect Discrimination

Indirect discrimination occurs when a provision, criterion, or practice (PCP) is applied but this results in individual’s who share a protected characteristic being placed at a disadvantage in comparison to those who do not have the protected characteristic. If the PCP can be objectively justified it will not amount to discrimination.

Indirect discrimination would occur if Docere accepted and acted upon an indirectly discriminatory instruction from a setting. If the vacancy requires characteristics which amount to an occupational requirement or the instruction is discriminatory but there is an objective justification, Docere will not proceed with the vacancy unless the setting provides written confirmation of the occupational requirement, exception or justification.

Docere will ensure to comply with the expectations of The Equality Act (2010) and will not accept instructions from settings that will result in unlawful discrimination. *http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents

Docere will not discriminate on the grounds of an individual’s membership or non-membership of a Trade Union. Docere is explicit in its understanding that all staff have an obligation to respect and comply with this policy.

Docere will not discriminate unlawfully when deciding which individual is submitted for a vacancy within a setting. We will ensure that everyone is assessed in accordance with their merits, qualifications and ability to perform the relevant duties for the role.

Harassment

Harassment is defined as unwanted conduct that relates to a protected characteristic which has the purpose or effect of violating an individual’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that individual. This includes unwanted conduct of a sexual nature.

*(Equality Act 2010 http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

Docere is committed to providing a work environment free from unlawful harassment.

Examples of prohibited harassment are:

  • Verbal or written conduct containing derogatory jokes or comments
  • Slurs or unwanted sexual advances
  • Visual conduct such as derogatory or sexually orientated posters
  • Photographs, cartoons, drawings or gestures which some may find offensive
  • Physical conduct such as assault, unwanted touching, or any interference because of sex, race, or any other protected characteristic basis
  • Threats and demands to submit to sexual requests as a condition of continued employment or to avoid some other loss, and offers of employment benefits in return for sexual favours
  • Retaliation for having reported or threatened to report harassment

If an individual believes that they have been unlawfully harassed, they should make an immediate report to the Manager, followed by a written complaint as soon as possible after the incident.

The details of the complaint should include:

  • Details of the incident
  • Name(s) of the individual(s) involved
  • Name(s) of any witness(es)

Docere will undertake a thorough investigation of the allegations. If it is concluded that harassment has occurred, action will be taken.

All employees of Docere will be expected to comply with this within the workplace. Any breach would lead to the appropriate disciplinary action. 

Victimisation

Victimisation occurs when an individual is treated unfavourably because he/she has a ‘protected act’ which is bringing a claim for unlawful discrimination or raising a grievance about discrimination or giving evidence in respect of a complaint about discrimination.

*(Equality Act 2010 http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

Docere will ensure that employees do not victimise any individual.

Disabled Persons

Discrimination occurs when an individual is treated unfavourably as a result of their disability.

In direct discrimination occurs where a provision, criterion or practice (PCP) is applied by or on behalf of an employer, or any physical feature of the employer’s premises, places a disabled person at a substantial disadvantage in comparison with persons who are not disabled.

*(Equality Act 2010 http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

Within recruitment and selection, of an employee for a setting, there may be a requirement to make reasonable adjustments. For example, it may be necessary to have different application procedures for partially sighted or blind applicants that enable them to use Braille.

Within testing and assessment methods and procedures, tests can only be justified if they are related to the skills and competencies required for the job role. However, it may be appropriate to have different levels of acceptable test results, depending on the disability. For example, an individual with a learning disability may need more time to complete a test, or not be expected to reach the same standard as other non-disabled individuals.

Reasonable adjustments in the recruitment of employees could include:

  • Modifying testing and assessment procedures
  • Meeting the individual at alternative premises which are more easily accessible
  • Having flexibility in the timing of interviews
  • Modifying application procedures and application forms
  • Providing a reader or interpreter

Wherever possible Docere will make reasonable adjustments to provide and improve means of access for disabled employees. However, this may not always be feasible, due to circumstances creating such difficulties as to render such adjustments as being beyond what is reasonable in all the circumstances. We will make career opportunities available to all people with disabilities and every practical effort will be made to provide for the needs of staff and settings

Docere will not discriminate against a disabled person:

  • In the arrangements i.e. application form, interview or arrangements for selection for determining whom a job should be offered to
  • In the terms on which employment or engagement, within a setting, is offered
  • By refusing to offer, or deliberately not offering the disabled person a job for reasons connected with their disability
  • By subjecting the individual to any other detriment (detriment will include refusal of training or transfer, demotion, reduction of wage, or harassment).

Age Discrimination

It is unlawful to discriminate against directly or indirectly or to harass or victimise an individual due to their age. Age discrimination does not just provide protection for individuals who are older or younger. Individuals of all ages are protected. A reference to age is a reference to that individuals age group. Those who share the protected characteristic of age are those who are in the same age group.

*(Equality Act 2010 http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

Docere will not discriminate directly or indirectly, harass, or victimise any individual on the grounds of their age. We will encourage settings not to include any age criteria in job specifications and every attempt will be made to encourage settings to recruit based on competence and skills and not age.

Docere is committed to recruiting and retaining employees whose skills, experience, and attitude are suitable for the requirements of the various positions regardless of age. No age requirements will be stated in any job advertisements on behalf of the company.

If Docere requests age as part of its recruitment process such information will not be used as selection, training or promotion criteria or in any detrimental way and is only for compilation of personal data, which the company holds on all employees as part of its equal opportunities monitoring process.

In addition, if under age 22 to adhere to Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Business Regulations 2003 (*http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2003/3319/contents/made) and other relevant legislation applicable to children or young candidates. Where a setting requests age or date of birth, this will have to be under an occupational requirement or with an objective justification which should be confirmed in writing.

Part-Time Workers

This policy also covers the treatment of those employees who work on a part-time basis. Docere recognises that it is essential that part time employees are treated on the same terms, with no detriment, as full-time employees (albeit on a pro rata basis) in matters such as rates of pay, holiday entitlement, maternity leave, parental and domestic incident leave and access to our pension scheme. Docere also recognises that part time employees must be treated the same as full time employees in relation to training and redundancy situations.

Gender Reassignment

Docere recognises that any employee may wish to change their gender during their employment with the Company. Docere will support any employee through the reassignment. We will make every effort to try to protect an employee who has undergone, is undergoing or intends to undergo gender reassignment, from discrimination or harassment within the workplace. Where an employee is engaged in work where the gender change imposes genuine problems Docere will make every effort to reassign the employee to an alternative role within the Company, if so desired by the employee.

Recruitment of Ex-Offenders

Docere has registered with the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) and has the authority to apply for criminal records checks on individual because they are working with children we will comply with the DBS’s Code of Practice which includes having a policy on the recruitment of ex-offenders. *https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dbs-code-of-practice

Legislative Basis

The acts listed below set out the legal basis of equal opportunities. They also provide for rights of appeal and sanctions to be invoked where discrimination is proved.

The relevant acts are:

  • Equality Act 2010
  • Sex Discrimination Act 1975
  • Race Relations Act 1976 and 2000 as amended
  • Disability Discrimination Act 1995
  • Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006
  • Part-time Workers (Prevention of less Favourable Treatment) Regulations 2000
  • Equal Pay Act 1970
  • Data Protection Act 1998
  • Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1994
  • The Asylum and Immigration Act 199

Docere recognises that the provision of equal opportunities in the workplace is not only good management practice, it also makes sound business sense. Our equal opportunities policy will help all those who work for us to develop their full potential and the talents and resources of the workforce will be utilised fully to maximise the efficiency of the company.

Absence from Work/Sickness Policy

Docere, understands that there will be times when employees are ill or need to take time off for personal reasons. This policy is specifically related to employee illness. 

(There are already policy documents in place for maternity leave, paternity leave, flexible working, and homeworking)

  • Docere expects that employees will consider themselves; their colleagues and the business as a whole and therefore require that employees adhere to this policy.
  • Where employees are unable to come to work because they are sick or may have suffered an injury, it is important that they telephone the manager as early as possible and within 1 hour of theor normal start time
  • Complete a self-certification form for sickness absence of up to seven calendar daysWhen the sickness absence lasts for more than a week, employees must provide a relevant doctor’s certificate, called a fit note, which will state why you are not fit for work
  • If the employee’s sickness absence is going to continue when the fit note or Doctor’s certificate expires, it is their responsibility to provide Docere with a new certificate covering the continued absence

Fit for work service

The Fit for Work programme is a government-funded occupational health assessment service. The intention behind the programme is to help employees get back to work when they have been absent with sickness. If you are absent with sickness for four weeks, either we or your doctor may suggest referring you to the Fit for Work service. Your Doctor can, where he or she believes it is appropriate, suggest that a referral is made earlier than four weeks. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/197669/797summ.pdf  

Sick pay

Docere does not provide contractual sick pay over and above any statutory sick pay to which an employee may be entitled. An employee may be entitled to receive statutory sick pay if they meet the statutory requirements. Statutory sick pay is not paid for the first three consecutive days of sickness absence. Statutory sick pay may be payable for up to 28 weeks. 

(https://www.gov.uk/statutorysickpay)

Meeting with you about your return to work

When an employee has been absent with illness, the manager may hold a return-to-work interview with you. The reason for the meeting is to check that you are fit enough to return to work and consider whether there are any steps that could be taken to facilitate this. It is also Docere’s opportunity to speak with you about any issues regarding your absence record.

Long-term sickness/absence or frequent short-term absences

In circumstances where an employee has been absent for a long period or has had frequent shortterm absences, Docere will be supportive but will follow the following process.

It is important for Docere to understand the reasons for an employee’s absence. Docere needs to know whether there are things we can do to help you improve your attendance and your health. In some circumstances we may need to get medical information about an employee’s illness before deciding on any course of action.

Docere may need to meet with the employee to discuss their absence, the medical information, or other related issues. Docere will provide reasonable notice of the meeting and location. If the employee is unable to attend the meeting, at the time specified, it is especially important that Docere knows as soon as possible. We will then seek to arrange another time where they are able to attend.

Where it is relevant, Docere will consider whether reasonable adjustments may need to be made to the sickness absence procedure, or to your role or working arrangements, in line with The Equality Act 2010.

(http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

Medical assessments

In appropriate circumstances, Docere may ask the employee to consent to attending a medical assessment by a doctor or occupational health adviser. Sometimes it may be that a specialist medical practitioner is the right person for them to see. Docere will always discuss this with the employee. Docere will ask you to agree that any medical report produced may be disclosed to them. All medical reports will be kept confidential.

Sickness absence meeting (concern)

Docere will request this meeting to discuss the reasons for absence, the likely next steps and prognosis. We will also want to discuss whether to obtain a medical report and whether there are any steps that we can work together to improve your health.

Where the sickness absence is of a long-term nature, it may be appropriate to agree a return-to work programme in partnership with medical advice and the employee.

 

When sickness absence does not improve

Docere will monitor an employee’ progress following any sickness absence meeting. Where they have not been able to return to work from longer term sickness or are unable to meet any targets set for short term absences, Docere will invite them to another meeting. 

The point of another meeting is to assess whether the absence situation is likely to improve. Where it is appropriate and able to do so, Docere will consider redeployment opportunities.

Where we believe that it is unlikely that you will return to work from long term absence or where you have not been able to meet the targets for improving short-term absences, you may be given a written warning that you are at risk of dismissal. Where the circumstances require, we will agree a further review period and a meeting to follow.

Final sickness absence meeting

Where there is no improvement in reaching any targets set for the reduction of short-term absences or the employee has been unable to return to work from long-term sickness Docere will invite the employee to another meeting. This meeting will include an assessment of whether to terminate the contract of employment. Docere will consider any points that are raised in relation to the employee’s sickness absence and the likely prognosis.

Retirement Policy

Docere understands that most employees now have the right to decide at what age they will retire. Government guidance identifies that for most job roles there is no longer a legal set retirement age.
(https://www.gov.uk/working-retirement-pension-age)

Docere will adhere to The Equality Act 2010 and will not:

  • Raise or prompt a discussion about when an employee might retire
  • Ask an employee questions such as ‘when are you planning to retire?’
  • Suggest they retire, put pressure on them to retire or force them to retire

However, if an employee raises Docere or the manager that they have been thinking about possible options such as full or partial retirement, without being asked or prompted, then that is a different matter. Government guidance would then allow for a conversation between Docere and/or manager with the employee, to enable them to start to discuss retirement.

Docere will adhere to The Equality Act 2010 and will not respond with discriminatory remarks or actions. Docere will not:

  • Treat an employee detrimentally because they are thinking about retiring or could already take their work pension or State pension.
  • Suggest the employee should retire before or during a disciplinary process
  • Change an employee’s employment contract once they take any pension

Docere understand that an employee does not need to retire when they reach their state pension age.

As the employer Docere can ask an employee, no matter what their age, about their work plans in the short-, medium- and long-terms, and how they view their contribution to the organisation. This would generally be completed during an employees’ annual appraisal or regular review.

An annual appraisal or regular review may:

  • Provide an opportunity for Docere to outline its general plan for the future of the business and workforce
  • Support Docere and the employee identify the employee’s future work preferences
  • Include an annual salary review
  • Must not include any discriminatory remarks or actions.
  • Not ask an employee a different set of questions because of their age
  • Not prompt a discussion with an “older” employee about when they might retire, or suggest they go part-time or switch to another role because of their age
  • Talk to the employee about retirement only if the employee introduces the subject and wants to explore it; the employee must volunteer the information without being asked or prompted
  • Make a note of outcomes and hold these for as long as there is a business need; where this is the case Docere will provide the employee with a copy

Docere understands that it cannot force an employee to retire if they do not want to. If an employee decides they are going to retire but has not given Docere their formal notice of when, they can change their mind. In this situation, Docere will discuss with the employee about the reason for their change of mind and whether there is any issue it might be able to help them overcome. This might be so they can retire on the planned date or shortly after. Or, for example, the employee might now have decided they want to carry on working.

Docere notes that the legal guidance states that, “if an employee has given their employer formal notice of their intention to retire on a certain date, the employer does not have to let them withdraw their notice.”

(https://www.gov.uk/work/pensions-and-ageing-society)

In line with Docere’s Equal Opportunities Policy, employees and prospective candidates are protected against discrimination because of age. This includes protection against unfair treatment because the employees or prospective candidate which is:

  • A different age or in a different age group to another job applicant or employee, or
  • Thought to be of a particular age
  • Associated with someone belonging to a particular age group

(http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/15/contents)

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