ABOUT THIS POLICY
It is the vision of TSI to inspire future leaders through holistic education that champions global enterprise and innovation. We have adopted as core values the importance of Responsibility, Self-Discipline and Ethics to enable us to achieve this vision. Therefore, the aims of this Disciplinary Policy are to provide a framework within which TSI can maintain satisfactory standards of conduct and to encourage improvement where necessary. This procedure will cover conduct, not issues related to genuine sickness absence or poor performance. In those cases, reference should be made to agreements and the school’s professional code.
This policy must be read in conjunction with other TSI policies, in particular the Safeguarding Policy, Staff Code of Conduct and the Professional Code of Conduct for Teachers.
TYPES OF MISCONDUCT
Misconduct might be a series of minor offences or a single incident. Misconduct falls into two categories: general misconduct and gross misconduct. The nature and severity of the alleged offence will determine the form of disciplinary action invoked. Gross misconduct will result in either a final written warning or summary dismissal, which may be without notice or with pay in lieu of notice when the nature of the case is such that the School cannot allow the individual to continue at work.
Minor conduct issues can often be resolved informally between an employee and their line manager or the Principal. These discussions should be held in private and without undue delay whenever there is cause for concern. Formal steps will be taken under this procedure if the matter is not resolved, or if informal discussion is not appropriate (for example, because of the seriousness of the allegation).
Our aim is to deal with disciplinary matters sensitively and with due respect for the privacy of any individuals involved. All employees must treat as confidential any information communicated to them in connection with an investigation or disciplinary matter.
Employees, and anyone accompanying them (including witnesses), must not make electronic recordings of any meetings or hearings conducted under this procedure.
Following any investigation, if the School considers there are grounds for disciplinary action, the employee will be required to attend a disciplinary hearing. The School will confirm in writing the basis for the allegations and what the likely range of consequences will be if it decides after the hearing that the allegations are true. Employees will be given all relevant documentation gathered during the investigation.
In most cases, the Principal will deal with disciplinary hearings for teachers or support staff. The employee will be advised in writing of the date, time, place of hearing, who will be involved, the nature of the complaint being made and given copies of any supporting information, including statements taken as part of an investigation.
At the disciplinary hearing, the chair will go through the allegations and the evidence that has been gathered. The employee will be able to respond and present any evidence of their own.
Having considered the matter the chair may announce the decision orally to the employee or may reserve the determination of the matter and choose to inform the employee in writing within a reasonable period of time.
Any verbal decision will be confirmed in writing within a reasonable period of time.
The usual penalties for misconduct are set out below. Employees may be dismissed for a first act of misconduct if it amounts to gross misconduct, with or without a Disciplinary Hearing, or the employee is still in their probationary period.
Misconduct on the part of the Employee shall consist, without prejudice to the generality thereof of the following acts –
a. Stealing, falsification of accounts or records, fraud or any other form of dishonesty;
b. Deliberate acts calculated to cause or likely to cause injury or damage to the Employer’s property or business or injury to other employees or persons at the place of work.
c. Wilful refusal to carry out proper and reasonable instruction.
d. Rude, abusive and violent conduct near or at the place of work.
e. Being under the influence of alcohol or drugs at or near the place of work.
f. Wilful disregard for safety.
g. Incompetence in the performance of duties.
h. Negligent and reckless conduct.
i. Abuse of confidential information.
j. Conviction for a criminal offence.
k. Persistent lateness to and absenteeism from work without good reason.
l. Sexual harassment of students or other staff, including volunteers and interns- see Sexual Harassment Policy
First written warning where there has been a first act of misconduct which the employer following investigation does not deem to be gross misconduct, and the employee is not subject to any other active written warnings, the employee will be advised that a failure to improve or a repetition of the misconduct may result in further disciplinary action.
Final written warning where there has been misconduct and an active warning is already in place or in the case of a first but serious breach of discipline. This warning must state that failure to improve or any repetition may result in dismissal.
Dismissal with or without notice where any misconduct takes place in the probationary period, or further misconduct which takes place where a final written warning is already on an employee’s record, or for gross misconduct regardless of whether an employee has received previous disciplinary warnings; or for a conclusion of unsatisfactory teaching performance on assessment.
Where the Employee is accused of misconduct, the matter shall be investigated as fully as practicable without delay.
ALTERNATIVES TO DISMISSAL
In some cases alternatives to dismissal may be considered at the employer’s sole discretion. These will usually be accompanied by a final written warning. Examples include:
- A period of suspension without pay (one month)
- Reduction in pay
Provided that where the status of the Employee is to be reduced, he/she must be given full information about the alternative position being offered to him/her to enable the employee to decide whether to accept or reject it.